The idea of being a national champion is still sinking in with Gracie McCleskey.
The former Caledonia High School softball standout knew she was in store for some of the best competition the state of Mississippi had to offer when she signed to play at Jones County Junior College in Ellisville.
The stories started after Quintavin Williams received the text message from Brian Merkel.
It's one thing to play on your home course in the biggest event of the season.
CALEDONIA -- Houston Mims seized the opportunity.
STARKVILLE -- Ben Owens never envisioned the recruiting process would take this long.
But the Starkville Academy senior's patience paid off Wednesday when he celebrated his decision to play football at Belhaven University in Jackson.
There is power in numbers for the Heritage Academy girls tennis team.
In a sport where individual pursuits sometime overshadow team accomplishments, the Lady Patriots worked this season toward one goal: doing their part to help the squad win a state championship.
Playing for his teammates is second nature to Xavier Harrison.
The New Hope High School senior doesn't know how he came to possess a drive to track down opponents and a knack for making life miserable for attacking players.
Sisters and brothers have their ways of working through disagreements.
Some argue. Some don't talk to each other for hours or days until the silence becomes too much to bear.
Other siblings prefer to stay positive and to offer constant encouragement and support.
Count Drew Pounders and Xavier Harrison as part of the latter group.
Thomas Berkery is "hyped."
Baseball always has been part of the former Mississippi State standout's life for as long as he can remember. He coaches his son's travel ball team as part of the Swing Elite organization based in Starkville. Berkery also owns The Swing, a 10,000-square foot facility on Industrial Road in Starkville, where he and other instructors give lessons for baseball and softball.
Travis Garner has a good memory.
But it wasn't until John Wilson told Garner he coached him years ago at the Mississippi State baseball camp that the coach who is "getting older" remembered he had received instruction from the "old" coach.
STEENS -- Bill Beck is used to wearing a lot of hats.
From coaching football, working as athletic director, and coaching boys basketball, track and field, and cross country in the last 15 years at DeSoto School in West Helena, Arkansas, Beck has learned staying busy isn't a problem.
Josh Hill and Blayze Berry showed Tuesday night why they are two of the best pitchers in the state of Mississippi.
There have been times this season when the New Hope High School baseball team has been its worst enemy.
STEENS -- The maturation is complete.
The fight was what Wade Goodman was looking for all season.
Chemistry is at the heart of everything the Heritage Academy baseball team has accomplished this season.
STEENS -- Chris Webber wanted to go out on a high note.
Wade Tackett sees the potential at New Hope High School.
Tackett knows about the community's support of its sports programs from his years as a coach at Grenada High. When he interviewed for the school's football coach opening, Tackett saw the facilities, including a new field house, and a new school that is set to open for the 2018-19 school year.
Wade Tackett is in line to be the next football coach at New Hope High School.
Andy Stevens doesn't have a lot of time.
Following the resignation Tuesday of Tim Nickens as Caledonia High School's football coach, Stevens, the school's principal, hit the phones and began the search for the Confederates' new coach.
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