STARKVILLE -- CJ Jackson knew he wasn't getting tackled.
New Hope football coach Wade Tackett knows the stakes are already high enough when his Trojans (1-2) visit MHSAA Class 5A, Region 1 opponent Columbus (0-3) on Friday.
As soon as eighth grader Caroline Peal opened the scoring for the Heritage Academy girls soccer team in Tuesday's home match against Laurel HomeSchool, Patriots coach Tom Velek delivered an important reminder.
Micaela Hudgins led the Trojans with nine kills, while Daylyn Nettles and Madyson McBrayer each had eight, and Zoe Goodman had two.
Baylee Smith went 2 for 2, walked twice and drove in a team-high four runs for the Raiders.
The Green Wave (2-1) moved up a spot in the latest rankings.
Caledonia head coach Samantha Brooks and New Hope assistant coach Becky Hudgins shared a court in college in the 1990s, and they've helped their respective programs -- rivals in name only -- draw closer together.
Caledonia, Starkville and Hebron Christian all picked up wins this week, while Columbus, West Lowndes and Oak Hill Academy were among the losers.
The Bulldogs honored Wilcox, who died from the disease in June 2018, with a walk around Chadwick Lake. Coach Samantha Ricketts said spreading knowledge of the symptoms of ovarian cancer can help prevent someone else from going through what Wilcox and her family did.
Hayden Harris batted away the Bulldogs' go-ahead two-point conversion attempt with 29 seconds left, New Hope rebuffed Aberdeen on another last-second possession, and the Trojans snagged a home victory.
Taking a set from a Class 5A program had the Panthers feeling somewhat optimistic despite their loss Thursday.
Coach Chase Nicholson said his Vols are a "mirror image" of the Rebels and expects another close game between the two programs.
STARKVILLE -- Olivia Simpson likes to dance.
"She's been an effective force for us," Caledonia coach Samantha Brooks said of her senior after Tuesday's sweep of the Troopers.
The Tigers haven't lost, but Columbia took over second from them in Tuesday's poll.
MACON -- Speed is Antonio "AJ" Fowler's biggest asset on the football field, the quality that allows the Noxubee County sophomore wide receiver to make the game-breaking plays he routinely delivers.
Almost every local team played on the road Friday. See how they fared here.
Wesley Miller's 3-yard touchdown was the deciding score as the Patriots earned a 28-21 win.
Against a team that Falcons coach Joshua Pulphus said would contend for the Class 5A north half title, Columbus has a chance to prove it's made significant progress in its rebuild.
The Trojans (8-0) have still not dropped a set in regular-season competition all year.
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