Sports / Outdoors – 9/15/2006

Published 12:00 am Friday, September 15, 2006

The Panolian: SPORTS – September 15, 2006

  From the 9/15/06 issue of The Panolian       

ND softball prepares for playoffs
By Myra Bean

The North Delta fastpitch softball team has earned a trip to the playoffs beginning Wednesday, September 20.

The district tournament will be held at Tunica Institute of Learning in Tunica.

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The Lady Green Waves were first in the district going into Tuesday’s game with Bayou but lost that pivotal game 2-0.

Earlier in the season, the Lady Waves defeated Bayou 1-0. That one point was all Bayou needed to take the district lead.

Those two runs are the only scores the Lady Waves have allowed this week in four games.

Monday, they defeated Marvell 12-0. Wednesday, they defeated Tunica 17-0 and West Memphis 15-0.
The Lady Waves will be in Marks to take on Delta tomorrow morning beginning at 10 a.m. in A and B games. Monday, they will finish the season hosting Magnolia Heights at 4 p.m.

Old timers game to be held Sat.
The South Panola baseball team is preparing some good old fashioned fun with America’s favorite pastime ? baseball.

Former members of the South Panola baseball team, old timers, will put on a baseball game Saturday, September 16.

Some familiar names on the roster include coach Ronald McMinn, Barry Flint, Wayne Belk, Jim Pitcock, Randy Willis, Mike White, coach Robert Lightsey, Randy Johnson, Bob Burkes, James Horace Finnie, coach Darrell Arnold, Jake Joiner, Scott Harrison, Byron Houston, Tommy Bolton, Fred Graves, Keith Parker, Ricky Towles, Craig Webb, Niles Norris, Mike Britt, Chris McMinn, David Hardy, Brandon Burnett, Chris Ware, Jay Williams, Joey Hopper, Shane Faulkner, Jerry Ware, Henry Pullen, Nathan Bowden, Ben Boren, Brad Lightsey, Chris Burnett, Jeff Walls, Brandon Kizer, Josh Bright, Tyler Brewer, Nick Walton, Hunter Coy, Jonathan Flint and Josh Boren.

Though this is a fun event, proceeds will go to a fund to help four Tiger players who were involved in an automobile accident this summer.

Tyler Benson, Brandon Taylor, Jonathon Ware and Monroe Harrison were on their way to Geyser Falls in Philadelphia, Miss. when the accident occurred.

Three had to be flown to the University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson for emergency treatment. One was sent to the hospital in Meridian. All four underwent surgery for various injuries.

The money raised will go towards helping these families with medical care.

Sponsored by the South Panola Chapter of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA) as a fall project, tickets for the event are $6 and allow the holder to hear gospel music beginning at 4:30 and enjoy a chicken dinner with all the trimmings beginning at 5 p.m. followed by a game featuring local celebrities and used-to-bes.

Those interested in the evening of baseball, gospel music and dinner should contact any baseball team member or member of Junior Civitan for tickets.

Cougars start district play tonight with Holly Springs
By Myra Bean

While 5A and 1A are finishing up the non-conference season, the other three regions are set to begin district play tonight.

North Panola will host Holly Springs. Both teams come into the conference with identical 0-3 records and hungry for their first win of the season.

North Panola has played some close games but have not been able to pull out the wins.

Last week against Rosa Fort the Cougars fell 26-9, but were in the game.

"We are in position to make plays, we just have to make plays," said Cougar head coach Vincent Johnson. "I am confident in the schemes we have prepared."

Johnson is also looking for his first win as a head coach.

"If we play every down with 100 percent effort, execution will follow," Johnson added.

Another advantage the Cougars hope to showcase is the return of senior quarterback Perry Trammell who has not played this season due to injury.

At last week’s game, Johnson praised the fans.

"We had great community support at the game," he said.

The rest of the 3-3A district is not looking so good going into the new season. Senatobia is 0-3; M.S. Palmer 1-2; Independence 1-2; and Byhalia 0-2-1.

Independence will not begin district play until September 22.

Water Valley begins the district season as the only team with a winning record, 2-1. As for Senatobia, it has played three of the toughest teams in the state in 3A Charleston, last year state champion runner-up; Oxford, last year’s 4A district champion and North Half runner up; and an always tough 3A Corinth.

Many look at the district season as starting the season over. Johnson is no exception.

"I hope after tonight’s game we will be 1-0," he said.

Kickoff for the Cougar/ Hawks football matchup is 7 p.m. on Cougar field.

Jr. High Green Waves start season 1-1
By Angie Ledbetter

The North Delta Junior High football team played its first district game on Thursday, September 7, at home and shut out the Marvell Junior High Eagles 18-0.

The first quarter was scoreless. The only score in the second quarter came when Jim Tom Copeland caught a nine-yard pass from quarterback Bryan Nickle. The PAT was blocked and the score stood 6-0 with 1:21 left.

The Green Waves were successful with an onside kick as Chance Crites recovered it on Marvell’s 49. The quarter ended with Marvell intercepting the ball with 21 seconds left in the first half.

With 26 seconds left in the third quarter, Corbin Baker caught a 12-yard pass from Nickle. With the missed PAT, the Green Wave had a 12-0 lead.

Nickle scored the last points of the evening on a 42-yard run with 5:23 left in the game but again the PAT was no good for the 18-0 score.

The Green Waves opened the season August 31 against the Delta Academy and lost 36-7.

The only scoring for the junior high Green Wave came in the fourth quarter of the game with 3:25 left on the clock and quarterback Bryan Nickle scored on a 3 yard keeper and the PAT by Nickle was good to bring the final score to 36-7 in favor of the Raiders.

Tres Brassel scored a touchdown and Geri Lamm scored two touchdowns. The defense was the highlight of the scrimmage led by Will Dunlap, according to Green Wave head coach Richard Russo.

Coach Russo said that he thought that the team had played 110 times better than they did the first week.

"They played with a purpose and they played as a team," said Russo. "They really stuck together."

The defense garnered the most improvement, according to Russo, on technique and tackling.
Russo was also pleased with the play of Nickle at quarterback.

"On the offense, Bryan Nickle really read the option extremely well for an eighth grade quarterback," Russo said. "I was very impressed with his play. He threw the ball extremely well, too."

Russo was complimentary of the play of Copeland making the touchdown when the game was scoreless.

"Jim Tom Copeland stepped up and really ran a good route," Russo said. "As soon as he turned around, the ball was in his face and he made a great catch and scored a touchdown."

Another player who gained some verbal recognition from Russo was Geri Lamm on special teams.

"On the punt return, I wished that he had accelerated and opened the field and scored," Russo said. "He gave us a big boost right there in the first quarter. He really put field position back in our favor."

Russo said he could not say enough about the defense.

"Our safety, Tres Brassel, had the biggest hit of the game and Geri Lamm did an excellent job," Russo said. "I thought that our linebackers played a lot better, which are Carson Bailey, Thomas Womble, and Chance Crites."

The Green Wave Junior High traveled to Tunica last night, but the score was not available at press time.
The Jr. High will play at Bayou Academy next Thursday night beginning at 7 p.m.

South Panola High School baseball will host an "Old Timers Benefit Baseball" tournament on Saturday, September 16. Tickets are $6 and may be purchased at the South Panola High School Office, from Shelter Insurance, any player or parent.
     Fee includes admission and a chicken plate. Proceeds will benefit the four baseball players who were injured in a car accident recently.
     Any former South Panola baseball player is eligible to play. To play contact coach Brad Lightsey at 934-5000 or Ben or Randy Boren at Shelter Insurance 563-2772.
The South Panola High School baseball program will host a Fall Instructional League every Tuesday in September 2006 from 2 to 5 p.m. Children ages 10 to 13 can participate. The cost is $40 and includes a t-shirt. T-shirt sizes will be taken the first day of the session.
     The dates of the sessions will be September 5, 12, 19 and 26.
     Sessions will stress baseball fundamentals such as fielding, throwing, hitting, pitching and catching as well as squad games.
     For an application or more information, contact head baseball coach Patrick Robey at (662) 934-2104. Registration deadline is September 1.
Backups provide Tigers depth
     South Panola seniors quarterback Leroy Diggs (left) and tailback Jeramie Griffin proudly wear their t-shirts they received along with the rest of the team from Fox 13 Sports. The Tigers were named the team of the week and were showcased Wednesday afternoon and night on FOX 13.
By Myra Bean

As South Panola goes through the season, a new generation of leaders is being born.

Last Friday against Germantown, South Panola (3-0) got a chance to showcase some of the upcoming leaders on the team.

The backup players on the nationally-ranked team helped solidify and protect the lead and the win over Germantown last week. In the games against Clarksdale and Moss Point, they were not seen very much. Those two teams took the starters all the way to the edge.

As the season progresses and the backup players get some more game experience, head coach Ricky Woods said these players will be able to help in the "heat of the battle."

"Just playing helps," Woods said. "We play five B team games, but being in front of a bigger crowd is different."

He also hopes he will be able to use the backup squad in tonight’s game against Carver High School of Memphis.

Woods describes Carver (1-3) as being sort of like last year’s team.

"They gave us a little bit of trouble," Woods said.

South Panola won 39-20 last year. That was the second most points the Tigers gave up to a team. They gave up 25 to Columbus later in the season.

The Carver Cobras come to the game down 1-3 after giving up a lead and the game to Mitchell last week 28-20.

Carver went up 14-0 in the first quarter on a fumble and an interception they turned into scores.

Some familiar names to the Carver crowd are junior running back Robert Arnold, senior defensive end Napale Walters, sophomore running back Dewayne Johnson, junior quarterback Kendrick Wadley and junior wide receiver Andrew Fields.

Last week Woods activated sophomore David Renfroe at the quarterback position. Woods said he saw Renfroe throwing about three weeks ago and asked him if he wanted to try the quarterback position.

"He is a good athlete and has a good arm," Woods said.

Renfroe already punts and kicks for the Tigers.

Some other backup players providing some depth for the Tigers include running backs Reuben Corley, Terrance Griffin, Xavier Lee and Mario Nash.

South Panola is on pace to meet and break the state’s longest win streak record of 51, which was set by Hamilton from 1979-1983. The Tigers are at 48 straight wins. Hamilton broke the streak of 50 straight wins set by Picayune Carver from 1958-1962.

Kickoff tonight for this final non-conference game of the season is 7 p.m. The ticket booth opens at 6 p.m. for $5 general admission and $7 reserved seating.

Super 25 football rankings
Tuesday, September 12, 2006

1. Hoover, Ala. (2-0)
2. Byrnes, Duncan, S.C. (3-0)
3. Lakeland, Fla. (3-0)
4. Lufkin, Texas (2-0)
5. De La Salle, Concord, Calif. (1-0)
6. Southlake (Texas) Carroll (1-0)
7. Central Catholic, Pittsburgh (2-0)
8. St. Xavier, Cincinnati (3-0)
9. Warren Central, Indianapolis (4-0)
10. Lincoln-Way East, Frankfort, Ill. (3-0)
11. Hamilton, Chandler, Ariz. (2-0)
12. Oaks Christian, Westlake Village, Calif. (2-0)
13. John Curtis, River Ridge, La. (1-0)
14. St. Edward, Lakewood, Ohio (2-1)
15. Garland, Texas (2-0)
16. Independence, Charlotte (3-0)
17. St. Bonaventure, Ventura, Calif. (2-0)
18. Glades Central, Belle Glade, Fla. (1-1)
19. St. Peter’s Prep, Jersey City (1-0)
20. Summerville, S.C. (3-0)
21. Camden County, Kingsland, Ga. (2-0)
22. South Panola, Batesville, Miss. (3-0)
Previous: 23. Result: Winning streak hits 48 consecutive games, beating Germantown (Tenn.) 41-7. Next: Friday vs. Carver (Memphis).
23. Jenks, Okla. (2-0)
24. DeMatha, Hyattsville, Md. (2-0
25. Colerain, Cincinnati (3-0)
Green Waves to face former coach at Kirk Academy
By Angie Ledbetter

Tonight’s non-conference game for the North Delta Green Waves (2-1 overall, 1-0 district) against Kirk Academy will have a special twist. In one of the biggest games of the season, the Green Waves will face off with former head coach Rick Johnston.

Kirk has been one of the biggest district rivals, but that district association ended this year with North Delta moving to 1A. The emotions are expected to be very high not only for the Green Wave football players, but also for the parents, teachers and many friends.

Johnston had been at North Delta for 12 years before his resignation this spring when he took the assistant coach position at Kirk. Johnston had coached most of the players on the team since their seventh grade year.

Jim Beard, a senior, has played football since his seventh grade. This is his first season under a new coach.

"It is going to be different playing against him since I have been playing with him all of these years," Beard said. "He knows me about as well as anyone does as far as playing football. I want to play harder and beat him because he taught us to win. Now, he is against us, and we want to try and beat him now."

Another senior, Nick Douglas, played for Johnston for five years.

"I really can’t wait to play him," Douglas said. "It is just another game against our former coach so I don’t think that I will play any differently. But going up against him will be different. My emotions will be pretty high. He knows me a pretty good bit since I played for him since the seventh grade. I will be playing a different position on offense than what I played for him, so that will be different."

Evan West also played for Johnston since his seventh grade year.

"It will be a big challenge," West said. "It will have some mixed feelings going into the game somewhat. It will be kind of a rivalry game for me. I will play a lot harder than I ever have going up against him. He knows how I played in the past but I will be a totally different player in this game. As a whole, everyone is excited about going up against him."

The Kirk Academy Raiders (0-2 overall, 0-0 district) enter the game looking for their first win of the season.

The Raiders lost to 3A Pillow Academy in the season opener 50-0 and also lost 30-6 against 3A Oak Hill September 1.

Last week when things seemed to be going in favor of the Raiders, problems occurred during the game. The Raiders were up 27-6 over the Carroll Academy Rebels in Carrollton, when someone hit a utility pole and the football field lost its power with 51 seconds left in the first half of the game.

The game was stopped and is re-scheduled for October 30. The game between these two schools will be completed only if it will make a difference in the district and playoffs. Otherwise, Kirk will be declared the winner.

There is history between these two teams. The Raiders have not defeated the Green Waves since 2003 when they won 17-8. North Delta claimed the next two wins in 2004, 41-13 and by two points last year, 20-18.

Head Green Wave coach Richard Russo noted Johnston is running the defense at Kirk.

"Obviously he does a good job," Russo said. "He’s been around the block several times. I know that Coach Johnston feels like he knows the North Delta players inside and out and knows their strengths and weaknesses."

On offense, Russo said he feels Kirk is struggling to find its identity.

"If they finally settle on an offense, I am looking forward to see how our defense responds to that," Russo said. "I really hope that we can play as well defensive for four quarters as we did for three quarters last week."

The game will kick off at 7:30 p.m.

     These Northwest Ranger players posed for a photo with their former high school coaches. Included are (left to right) coach Lucian King, Jeremy Williams, Travis Sanford, Scott Honnoll, Marcus Johnson and coach Trenell Edwards.

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