Where are the top teams tonight?

@brandonspeck

Class 6A/5A

1. Starkville (7-0) at Madison Central: The Yellow Jackets received 12-of-13 first-place votes in the Associated Press overall poll.

2. Oxford (6-1) vs. New Hope: Big test against unbeaten Trojans.

3. Tupelo (5-2) vs. South Panola: A loss would be the third straight for injured Wave.

Class 4A/3A

1. Aberdeen (6-2) vs. Louisville: A win would all but secure the Division 4-3A title.

2. Corinth (6-2) at Itawamba AHS: Division 1-4A battle of 2-0 teams.

3. North Pontotoc (7-1) vs. Belmont: Big-play North Pontotoc has scored 31 points per two division games.

4. Ripley (5-3) vs. Rosa Fort: Tigers looking for revenge for controversial 2013 division loss at Rosa Fort.

5. Mooreville (5-2) vs. Booneville: Troopers have been a surprise of Division 1-3A.

Class 2A/1A

1. Calhoun City (8-0) open date: Week off before state’s top 2A team goes to Eupora.

2. Baldwyn (7-1) at East Union: Bearcats have won nine straight division games.

3. Walnut (7-1) at New Site: A Walnut win sets up an unbeaten division showdown next week at Baldwyn.

4. Hamilton (5-2) at Biggersville: Lions are 3-1 in division need a third straight win before closing the season at Smithville and against Coffeeville.

5. Falkner (5-2) at Coldwater: Key division game for 4-0 Eagles before hosting Smithville and going to Coffeeville.

Posted in Football

Softball playoff scores from Thursday, Oct. 16

Class 1A
Falkner 16-22, Ashland 0-0
(Falkner wins series 2-0)
Smithville 11-14, Ingomar 8-4
(Smithville wins series 2-0)
Jumpertown 16-11, Blue Mtn. 2-0
(Jumpertown wins series 2-0)

Class 2A
Riverside 10-13, Walnut 1-2
(Riverside wins series 2-0)
East Webster 13-17, Puckett 3-0
(East Webster wins series 2-0)

Class 3A
Booneville 16-18, Charleston 0-5
(Booneville wins series 2-0)
Nettleton 12-18, North Pontotoc 2-3
(Nettleton wins series 2-0)
Mooreville 9-6, South Pontotoc 7-2
(Mooreville wins series 2-0)

Class 4A
Houston 2-2, Kosciusko 1-1
(Houston wins series 2-0)

Class 5A-6A
Saltillo 9-11, Clinton 2-7
(Saltillo wins series 2-0)

Posted in Sports

Week 8 Northeast Mississippi Fantasy Standings

@brandonspeck

@guntillobearcat has the latest totals in the NeMiss Fantasy League. I’m personally find of this one because Josh Williams and Antares Gwyn have me atop the standings with three weeks to go,

1. Brandon Speck 1,020.1
2. Kedrick Storey 996.5
3. Melissa Meador 912.2
4. Scotty Nichols 842.6
5. Jeff Roberts 760.9
6. Jonathan Wise 676.7
7. John Davis 601.6
8. Donica Phifer 218.9

Week 8 Results (season total)

Brandon Speck 205.4 (1,020.1)
Josh Williams, Aberdeen 64 (329.8)
Jay Johnson, Bruce 17.5 (85.4)
Marquis Moore, Byers 39.8 (154.1)
Jacquez Horsley, Starkville 14.3 (94.6)
Antares Gwyn, Corinth 69.8 (356.2)

Kedrick Storey 141.1 (996.5)
Jase Stroupe, Falkner 35.1 (219.9)
Dorian Gaston, Ripley 0 (86.8)
Armani Linton, Walnut 35 (196)
Alston Dill, Mantachie 0 (49.7)
Dakota Dailey, Marshall Academy 71 (444.1)

Jeff Roberts 106.5 (760.9)
Chakel Gates, Calhoun City 33.3 (188.5)
Isaiah Howard, Ripley 11.5 (108.1)
Jeramie Lawrence, Falkner 27.3 (136.1)
Chance Lindsey, Hatley 8.8 (162.9)
JT Herring, New Site 25.6 (165.3)

Scotty Nichols 96.3 (842.6)
Duke Upshaw, Baldwyn 19.7 (169.9)
Alex Norwood, Tupelo 0 (59.4)
Diamante Pounds, Saltillo 23.4 (216.9)
Hunter White, IAHS 14.8 (121.6)
Vijay Miller, IAHS 38.4 (274.8)

Jonathan Wise 67.1 (676.7)
Daniel Bristow, Tupelo 7.1 (104)
Brooks Shannon, North Pontotoc 39.5 (244.8)
TJ Fields, Amory 11 (114.6)
DJ Glaspie, Bruce 0 (13.9)
Caleb Nelson, North Pontotoc 9.5 (199.4)

John Davis 55.8 (601.6)
Jack Abraham, Oxford 0 (248.9)
CJ Williams, Aberdeen .6 (11.3)
Kenzie Phillips, Oxford 45.2 (173)
Zach Cousar, Oxford 0 (32.8)
Tyrell Price, Lafayette 10 (83.7)

Melissa Meador 51.9 (912.2)
Brady Davis, Starkville 19.7 (347.3)
DK Metcalf, Oxford 19.5 (96)
Keshon Heard, Hamilton 0 (200.1)
Tyreke Gates, Aberdeen 10.3 (75.4)
Brandon Townsend, Houston 2.4 (149.5)

Donica Phifer 18.3 (218.9)
Devon Thomas, Lafayette 3.1 (85.5)
Jake McDonald, New Albany 15.2 (24.2)
Quincy Starks, West Point 0 (76.4)
Hunter Sheffield, IAHS 0 (20.6)
Chase Hall, East Union 0 (12.4)

Posted in Football

Softball playoff schedule for Thursday, Oct. 16

Class 1A
Ashland at Falkner, 5 p.m.
Smithville at Ingomar, 5 p.m.
Jumpertown at Blue Mountain, 5 p.m.

Class 2A
Walnut at Riverside, 1 p.m.
Puckett at East Webster, 5 p.m.

Class 3A
Charleston at Booneville, 5 p.m.
Mooreville at South Pontotoc, 5 p.m.
North Pontotoc at Nettleton, 5 p.m.

Class 4A
Kosciusko at Houston, 4 p.m.

Class 5A-6A
Clinton at Saltillo, 4 p.m.

Posted in Sports

Softball playoff scores from Wednesday, Oct. 15

Class 3A
Kossuth 15, Winona 11Kossuth 12, Winona 2
Kossuth wins series 2-0

Posted in Sports

Hatley seniors looking to start a legacy for trodden Tigers

@brandonspeck

Hatley quarterback Jonathan Waycaster arrived in January 2013 – from Australia. With a dad who had played football at Hatley, Waycaster had pitched the ball in the back yard, but not played the organized game.

A senior, Waycaster has thrown for 957 yards and 11 touchdowns, as Hatley tries to make the playoffs for the first time in school history.

Senior teammate, lineman Adrian Moffett, who beams of the possible excitement making the playoffs would create for Hatley’s school and loyal fanbase, speaks highly of his quarterback.

“He has learned so much. It has really made him the player he is today,” Moffett said. “He’s a lot more athletic than the one’s we’ve had, a lot more athletic, a lot better throwing arm.”

Waycaster has a good running game and he likes his play-action options.

Born in South Carolina, he lived in Australia for a decade before returning to the states.

“It’s not near as big. Normally it’s older men that play (football),” Waycaster said.

Hatley was 0-11 the year before and hasn’t had a winning season since 1997, a streak of 16 losing years, winless in three of those.

“I still wanted to play,” Waycaster said. “Once we started winning, we need to start something. It’s gone on for too long. We need to show our progression.”

Here is my story from today’s #DJournal on Hatley’s hopes of winning its final three games and hosting, not just making, the postseason.

Posted in Football

Softball playoff scores from Tuesday, Oct. 14

Class 1A
Hamilton 11-16, Myrtle 4-0

Class 2A
East Union 14-21, Simmons 4-5

Class 4A
Tishomingo Co. 21-20, Rosa Fort 0-0
Leake Central 8-4-11, Itawamba AHS 7-9-10

Posted in Sports

Video: Don’t forget about Dario Robinson

@brandonspeck

Only two players in America had more receiving yards than former Amory receiver Dario Robinson did his junior year at Amory, one being the nation’s top overall recruit, Oklahoma receiver Dorial Green-Beckham.

After moving to fill a rushing need as a senior for Amory, Robinson is two years removed from high school, spent a year injured at Southeastern Louisiana and is now a freshman at East Mississippi.

“It’s been kind of crazy,” Robinson said.

He had a pretty good senior year, 801 receiving yards, five touchdowns. He rushed for more than 1,000 yards and scored 10 touchdowns.

Pretty good.

His 2010-11 junior season spent solely at receiver: video game good. Robinson put himself on the map with 2,191 yards and 21 touchdowns.

Quarterback Forest Williams was fourth in the nation in passing that season. Robinson was third, behind current Illinois receiver Zach Grant and Green-Beckham.

A late glitch is the only thing that kept Robinson from joining Grant at Illinois. Robinson would double-sign with Southeastern Louisiana and EMCC.

A knee scope just before his freshman season at SELA gave him the push to transfer to East.

“I’m 100 percent. I feel better than I’ve ever felt before,” he said.

It may seem like a step down from senior college, but the Lions are the No. 1 JUCO team in the country. The exposure he’ll get from both his own game and from coaches watching a bevy of other stars is unrivaled.

East is expected to make a run at a second national championship in three years. Robinson’s role will help determine that, as well as where he’ll play out his college football.

“It’s incredible, all type of stars,” Robinson said. “Everybody’s good. The coach teaches us he wants our least player to be the best player.”

Robinson has never been the least and says he’s gotten more explosive and smarter. He currently has four catches for 53 yards and a touchdown in an offense that has thrown the ball to 14 guys, all 14 playing in all six games.

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Posted in Football, Recruiting

Slowpitch teams throwing in the towel

I’m openly against Mississippi continuing to play scholarship-less slow-pitch softball and all for playing fast-pitch in the fall. But let’s take it a step further. I’m now against some teams playing either version of softball.

The slow-pitch playoffs are scheduled to begin Tuesday and three teams have already forfeited. Greenwood alerted Amory it is opting out, as did Leland, West Bolivar and West Tallahatchie in 2A. One of those three teams in 2A won the two playoff spots and no one really knows who, but they’ve told Hatley and Mantachie that they would not be playing.

An unnamed 4A team requested to be fed if it made the trip NE Miss.

It’s been a problem with Delta schools for a while, and a problem with a few schools in other parts of the state. But if you forfeit a playoff game, there should be a consequence. No softball – fast or slow – next season. Heck, if you’re pulling out of a series that was going to beat you 27- and 21-0 anyway, you probably would care.

I covered Coldwater at Smithville one year and Coldwater was winless in the regular season. It had played like three games and made the playoffs by default in a division that contained the same number of teams that the MHSAA playoff format allowed in the postseason.

Some of these teams bring 10 slow-pitch starters and seven gloves. It’s absurd and it should stop.

Posted in Sports

Starkville still climbing national polls

@brandonspeck

Starkville climbed a spot to No. 21 in the MaxPreps Xcellent 25 and is No. 6 nationally in the company’s computer rankings.

Here are the MP state rankings.

Starkville is a composite No. 18. Here are those rankings.

 

Posted in Football, Recruiting

Video: North Pontotoc can really run

@brandonspeck

North Pontotoc picked up a big division win, 34-14 against Booneville on Friday.

Booneville took a 7-0 lead on Jack Simpson’s pass to Ben McCutchen and seemed to control the first half, despite a 14-all tie.

But North’s prowess is big plays and the Vikings can afford some lulls as long as they get their share of breaking runs. That’s what they did, with scores of 65, 30, 17, 55 and 45.

Class 3A is tough at the top, with run-and-gun teams like Aberdeen and Kemper County, but if there is an unexpected team with the ability to pop off touchdowns with some of those, it’s North.

Aberdeen is this week’s No. 1 medium school. North remained at No. 3. The Vikings host Belmont this week.

Here is the story from Saturday’s #DJournal

Today’s story on North’s weaponry

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Posted in Football

Vardaman coach Gann takes to the Twitter

@brandonspeck

Vardaman coach Larry Gann watched his team lose 64-7 to visiting Coldwater on Friday. It send Vardaman to an 0-8 record. He wasn’t at all pleased with how it happened.

Once a sure North 1A contender and now seemingly stuck in rebuilding mode, Vardaman went 1-11 last season in Gann’s first year. He’s consistent with posting inspiration on his Twitter account, but last night he delivered a much more stern message. Here are a couple of tweets.

At 10:06 p.m.: “Tonight was NOT what Vardaman Ram football is about. I take responsibility for our play tonight. Poor effort from the start. Monday at 2:00!”

At 10:16 p.m.: “We have to coach better, we have to practice better, we have to play better as a team. Injuries are not an excuse for our effort tonight.”

Today at 8:34 a.m.: “We did a poor job of representing our community, our school, our student body, our fans, and former Ram players & our team. Work Monday!”

Posted in Football

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