Sports Notebook 030520

Central Holmes set to begin league baseball play

From combined reports

The Central Holmes Christian School Trojans will enter district play in baseball this week with only two games under their belt.

After losing a doubleheader to Ethel, Central Holmes had a Feb. 25 date with Deer Creek. That game was cancelled due to rain, leaving the Trojans without a game.

The Trojans will now enter district play as they were scheduled to travel to Carrol on Tuesday for a varsity doubleheader. Then on Thursday, Central Holmes will host the Rebels. Carroll is not in much better shape as it enters the week with an 0-3 record but did manage to get in two games last week.

— Robbie Robertson

MCADAMS SET TO OPEN SEASON

McAdams is expected to get its first baseball season under the direction of coach Michael Huffman under way this week.

Weather permitting, the Bulldogs were set to visit J.Z. George for a doubleheader on Tuesday, then travel to Walnut Grove to take on Leake County on Thursday. After a road game with Velma Jackson on Friday, the Bulldogs have nearly two weeks off before visiting Amanda Elzy on March 19.

— Austin Bishop

MSU’S MATHARU HONORED

Aliyah Matharu posted back-to-back career games in Mississippi State wins against Arkansas and Ole Miss, averaging 21 points, 5.5 rebounds, 2.5 assists and one steal per game to earn her second SEC Freshman of the Week honors.

The freshman guard earned her first career start on Thursday night against Arkansas and did not disappoint, finishing with 18 points behind four 3-pointers to go along with career highs in rebounds (7) and assists (4). Ten of her points came in a back-and-forth first quarter to keep State even with the hot-shooting Razorbacks.

The Washington, D.C., native followed that performance by going off for a career-high 24 points off the bench to lead all scorers at Ole Miss. Matharu was 8-of-12 from the field and knocked down a career-best five 3-pointers to go along with four rebounds, two steals and an assist in just 19 minutes of action. After Ole Miss took a 32-30 lead late in the second quarter, Matharu scored eight points during the final 1:12 of the frame to spark the offense, hitting a big 3-pointer with less than three seconds left to give State the momentum going into halftime.

The double-digit scoring efforts marked Matharu's fifth such performances during SEC play. She has posted nine double-digit scoring efforts on the season, including four games with 15 or more points.

— Josh Lively

C-SPIRE TOP PLAYER FINALISTS ANNOUNCED

The finalists for the C-Spire Gillom and Howell Trophies have been announced. The awards are presented to the top women’s (Gillom) and men’s (Howell) college basketball players in Mississippi each year, and they will be awarded during a ceremony at the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame on Mar. 9. 

The finalists for the Gillom Award, named in honor Ole Miss alum Peggy Gillom, are Quantesha Patterson of Delta State University and Rickea Jackson and Jessika Carter of Mississippi State.

Jackson, a freshman, leads MSU in scoring at 14.7 points per game, while Carter, a sophomore, averages 14 points and 9 rebounds per game. Patterson is average a double-double with 16.8 points and 13.2 boards per contest.

The finalists for the Howell Trophy, named in honor of former MSU and NBA star, Bailey Howell, include Mississippi State’s Reggie Perry, Breein Tyree of Ole Miss and Ledarius Woods of Tougaloo. Perry averages 17.2 points per game, while Tyree is averaging 32.2 points per team in SEC play ad Woods has a 21-point scoring average.

Fans will have a chance to help select the winner through a fan vote sponsored by C-Spire. The fan vote counts for a weighted 10% of the final total.  To vote fans may go to http://howellgillomvoting.hscampaigns.com to cast votes for their favorites.  Statewide sports media select the finalists and account for the remaining votes for the winners.

— Special Reports

THOMPSON TAKES MACJC HONOR

East Mississippi Community College head women’s basketball coach Sharon Thompson has been recognized for the Lady Lions’ successful season by being named the 2019-20 MACJC Women’s Basketball Coach of the Year, as voted on by the conference’s head women’s basketball coaches.  The announcement was made Wednesday by MACJC Commissioner Steven Martin, along with the conference’s other individual postseason basketball honors, as EMCC continues to serve as the proud host of this year’s MACJC Basketball Tournament being played at Keyes T. Currie Coliseum on the Scooba campus.

Thompson, who has also recently taken on additional administrative responsibilities as EMCC’s Director of Athletics, has guided the 24-2 EMCC Lady Lions to the MACJC North Division regular-season championship with a current 19-game winning streak heading into this week’s Region XXIII tournament in Clinton.

— David Rosinski

WEST LOWNDES TUMBLES

After rolling through the regular season and first portion of the postseason undefeated, the Lady Panthers of West Lowndes saw their season come to a sudden halt on Monday night at the Mississippi Coliseum in Jackson in the semifinals of the MHSAA Class 1A Girls State Basketball Tournament.

Loren Elliot scored 13 points and pulled down 11 board to lead Pine Grove to a convincing 55-26 thrashing of West Lowndes. Pine Grove, now 29-8 on the season and the three-time defending 1A state champions, will play Baldwyn at 1 p.m. on Thursday for the state title at the Pavilion at Ole Miss.

The 1A boys championship game, to be played at 3 p.m. on Thursday at Ole Miss, feature 18-12 Baldwyn against 35-2 Ingomar.

— Austin Bishop

LADY BULLDOGS WIN PAIR

The Holmes Community College Lady Bulldogs picked up two wins here Sunday afternoon over Mississippi Delta Community College, 15-6 and 19-12.

In the first game, Katie Dana went three innings and gave up five runs on eight hits with two strikeouts. Hannah Champion, Abby Welborn and Kylie Richardson each led the Lady Bulldogs with three hits. Welborn had a two-run homerun and a double while Champion added two doubles. Madilyn Manor and Lainee Mckelroy each had two hits with Mckelroy adding a two-run homerun and Manor having a triple.

In the second game, Jessica Mitchell went 3 1/3 innings and gave up eight runs on nine hits with three strikeouts and one walk. Dana went 3 2/3 innings and gave up four runs on three hits with three strikeouts and one walk.  Shelby Lindsay and Kaleigh Cosgrove each had three hits with Cosgrove adding a two-run homerun.  Teagun Barnes had a three-run homerun while Manor added a two-run homerun. Shawanda Gray had two triples while Champion, Mckelroy and Josie Reed each had a double.

— Steve Diffey

OLE MISS FOOTBALL NAMES GM

Ole Miss football head coach Lane Kiffin officially announced Monday the hiring of Matt Lindsey as the program's first general manager.

Lindsey will oversee the day-to-day operations of the Ole Miss football office, which includes administrative duties with player personnel, recruiting, staffing, performance analytics, academic support and other areas.

Lindsey arrives in Oxford after spending the last three years as the director of player personnel at South Carolina. While at USC, Lindsey oversaw all recruiting efforts for the Gamecocks. Aided by Lindsey, South Carolina put together three straight top-25 recruiting classes, including a 2020 class that ranked No. 18 nationally according to the 247Sports Composite rankings.

A native of Tuscaloosa, Lindsey was named the 2018 Football Scoop Player Personnel Director of the Year. In 2017, 247Sports recognized Lindsey in its "30Under30" list of rising stars in college football.

— School Reports

NE LAUDERDALE NAMES COACH

Maurice Gowdy has been hired as the new head football coach at Northeast Lauderdale High School near Meridian. NEL plays in the same division as Kosciusko High School.

It is Gowdy’s first head coaching job and will be the Trojans fourth head coach in four years. He has never been a varsity head coach, but served as offensive coordinator at both Biloxi and Moss Point and was co-offensive coordinator at Laure.

He replaces Glenn Sanders who resigned to take an assistant coach position at Meridian High School.

— Austin Bishop

HOLMES BASEBALL TAKES SWEEP

The Holmes Community College Bulldogs picked up two wins today over Blue Mountain JV, 11-1 and 10-0. With the wins, the Bulldogs improve to 6-4 overall.

Matthew Koch picked up the win. He went four innings and gave up one run on two hits with three strikeouts and one walk. Cade Johnson also threw in the game.

Jonathan Evans led the Bulldogs with two hits including a three-run homerun. Alex Frillman added a solo homerun and Jaylen Armstrong and Logan Toups added a double.

In game two, Alex Frillman picked up the win. He went two innings and gave up no runs on two hits with five strikeouts and two walks. Nate Oswalt and Dalton Massingill also threw in the game. Tommy Easley led the Bulldogs with three hits including a double to end the game. Cole Drake had a grand slam in the game.

— Steve Diffey