In the game of basketball there are many skills that come in to play.
Shooting, ball handling and passing are always at the top of most players list.
Having all those skills are great, but you can't pass, shoot or dribble if you don't have the ball and that’s where the art of rebounding enters the picture.
Shaw 33, JFK 18
The Shaw Hawks welcomed the John F. Kennedy Hornets into town Friday to kickoff Region 2-1A action.
The Hawks proved to be too much in the third quarter by outscoring the Hornets 20-6 to pull away for the victory. The Hawks led 13-12 at halftime.
Shaw improved to 4-2 overall and 1-0 in region play. The Hornets are now 1-4 overall and 0-1 in
Emmanuel Simmons led the Hawks offense with 182 yards on 17 carries and a touchdown, Jermarquis Stimage completing 6-of-11 passes for 67 yards with two touchdowns and an interception. Stimage also rushed for a touchdown. Travelle Ware had 56 yards on five carries while also adding one catch for 20 yards and a touchdown. Travious King also had a rushing touchdown. William Scott finished with three catches for 48 yards in the win.
Ware led the defense with 17 tackles; Ricky Lunford had 11 tackles with two sacks and Dacciarus Clark had nine tackles and Malik Matthews added seven tackles with a sack.
Rundell James led the Hornets offense with 70 yards on nine carries with a touchdown, Xavier Roberts had 30 yards on 10 carries with a touchdown and LaHarvair Obryant added 37 yards on one carry with a touchdown.
Shaw will be on the road to face the Hollandale Simmons Blue Devils this week. The Hornets will be off until Oct. 16.
Ray Brooks 36, Broad Street 6
The Ray Brooks Tigers picked up their first win of the season with a 30-point Region 2-1A win over the Broad Street Jaguars Friday in Benoit.
The win improved the Tigers to 1-3 overall and 1-0 in region play. Broad Street fell to 1-4 and 0-1 in region play.
Ray Brooks will be off this week and will be back in action on Oct. 9. Broad Street will also be off and will play again on Oct. 16.
Ruleville 27, Leland 20
The Ruleville Central Tigers survived a close one at home Friday when they hosted the Leland Cubs. With the win Ruleville improved to 2-4.
The Tigers trailed at halftime 13-7 and headed into the fourth quarter Leland was on top 20-14. Ruleville's offense and defense stepped up in the final period and outscored the Cubs 13-0 to take a 27-20 victory.
Markevion Quinn led the Tigers completing 10-of-17 passes for 184 yards with two touchdowns with one interception and also added 53 yards on six carries. Johntravious Hannon had 36 yards on nine carries with a touchdown and Trentavious Fonzy added 40 yards on five carries with a touchdown. Kajarvis Williams caught three passes for 50 yards with a touchdown and Jaleel Johnson had a 78-yard touchdown reception. Keeyuntae Willis caught four passes for 41 yards.
Deshawn Austin led the defense with nine tackles including seven tackles-for-loss, Fonzy had seven tackles and Willis added three tackles-for-loss. Demarkus Moorhead had tow sacks on the night and
Ruleville will be back in action at 7 p.m. Friday on the road against Humphreys County.
North Sunflower 28, Calhoun Academy 22
The North Sunflower Academy Rebels pulled out a tough one on the road against Calhoun Academy Friday night. With the win the Rebels improved to 3-3 on the year. Lucas Garrett ended the game completing 2-of-6 passes for 38 yards with a touchdown; he rushed for 88 yards on eight carries with a TD and caught a touchdown. Garrett also had 10 solo tackles a pass deflection and three forced fumbles. Jacoby Brown completed 3-of-6 passes for 19 yards with a TD and Mitch Ramage caught a 32-yard touchdown. The defense was also keyed by Patrick Boykin had 12 total tackles and two sacks. Rivers Ray had 10 total tackles and a sack. Caleb Dyche had nine tackles and a pass deflection. Bo Dawson had eight total tackles; three pass deflections, and two interceptions.
West Bolivar 26, Coahoma Aggie 14
The West Bolivar Eagles improved to 4-2 on Friday night with the win over the Coahoma Aggie Tigers in Clarksdale.
Roger Veazy led the Eagles' offense with 135 yards on 20 carries and three touchdowns, Greg Robb had 133 yards on 13 carries with a touchdown and Jermaine Jones added 50 yards on eight carries with a touchdown.
The Eagles will open Region 3-2A action at 7 p.m. Friday in Itta Bena against Leflore County.
Bayou 41, Kirk Academy 22
The Bayou Academy Colts picked up a key win in District 1-AAA Friday night on the road in Grenada. Bayou led Kirk 21-16
With the win the Colts improved to 3-3 overall with a 2-2 mark in district play.
Cross Crowe finished the night completing 8-of-14 passes for 124 yards and rushing for a touchdown. John Thomas Davis completed 1-of-2 passes for 74 yards and a touchdown. Davis also led the team in rushing with 116 yards on seven carries with three touchdowns. Dustin Gilliland had six carries for 57 yards. Jack Haynes caught a touchdown pass from Davis. Ashton Ouzts, Tayden Burrell, Turner Davis, Michael Beamon and Kamien Gray led the defense. Beamon and Gray each had an interception in the win.
The Colts will be back in action at 7 p.m. Friday at home against North Delta.
The Bayou Academy Lady Colts had to play themselves out of the losers bracket on Monday, but finished strong to take second in the North AAA State Tournament, held at Bear Pen Park in Cleveland.
Head Coach Lauren LaSuzzo said overall she felt really good about the team's performance in the tournament.
"We played really well. Our bats and pitching were great Monday. The girls really wanted it. Unfortunately we couldn't recover from some errors in the championship game. I'm proud of the girls now we just have to look forward towards the weekend," said LaSuzzo.
With the finish the Colts will advance to the AAA State Tournament at Shiloh Park in Brandon on Saturday. The Lady Colts are set to take on the Adams County Christian School Rebels at 9 a.m. The Rebels are the No. 3 team from the South Half Tournament.
If Bayou wins the first game they will play the winner of the North Delta/Silliman Institute game at 1 p.m. If they lose the first game they will play the loser from that game as well.
The other two games will feature Leake Academy against Cathedral Unity School at 9 a.m. and Kirk Academy against Simpson Academy at 9 a.m.
The Lady Colts started the North Half Tournament with a 10-0 win over Park Place on Saturday.
Bayou continued to dominate on Monday with a 14-2 win over Riverfield Academy.
The next contest pitted the Lady Colts against the Lady Rebels of Leake. Defense was at its best in this game as both team's were held scoreless until the bottom of the third when and RBI double gave the Rebels a 1-0 lead.
Leake added another run in the bottom of the fifth to take a 2-0 lead. The two runs proved to be enough for Leake as they held Bayou off to give the Lady Colts their first loss of the tournament.
Bayou then had to play out of the losers bracket and they did just that edging out Kirk Academy 3-0 to set up a rematch with Leake.
In the rematch the Colts brought their big sticks and jumped out on the Rebels quickly.
In the top of the first inning Kailyn Lofton started things off with a single and Chrissy Tubbs followed with a bunt single. A double from Ashley Vickers brought in Lofton and Tubbs to give the Lady Colts a 2-0 lead. Vickers scored off a wild pitch from third and later in the inning Shelby Newsom scored off a pass ball by the catcher to give the Lady Colts a 4-0 lead.
Bayou added another run in the bottom of the third when Tubbs led off with a triple. A ground out RBI from Vickers scored Tubbs for a 5-0 ball game.
Leake Academy put up four runs in the bottom of the frame for a 5-4 ball game.
An RBI double from Lofton scored Kamryn Otts for a 6-4 game and later in the inning Lofton scored for a 7-4 Lady Colts lead.
The Lady Rebels pulled to 7-6 with two runs in the bottom of the fourth, but in the top of the fifth Bayou went back to work.
Newsom led off with a single, Carley Peden laid down a bunt single and a wild pitch allowed both runners to move over into scoring position.
Ana Parker Davis socked a hard single that scored Newsom for an 8-6 lead.
Two batters later it was Brantley Hutchinson beating out a throw to load the bases.
With one out, Madison Jenkins stroked a two-run single to give the Lady Colts a 10-6 lead. A ground out RBI from Lofton increased the lead to 11-6.
In the top of the sixth inning Bayou added two more runs for a 13-6 lead. Leake scored a run in the bottom of the sixth, but Bayou added one of their own in the top seventh to take a 14-7 lead and the game.
Because it was a double elimination tournament and Leake had just suffered their first loss, the Lady Colts had to play them again.
In the next game the Lady Colts were not as fortunate as they fell to the Lady Rebels 6-3.
Tonneisha (Woo) Bell lives and breathes basketball.
She will tell you that most of her thoughts are consumed with some form of the sport each day.
Every opportunity she is afforded is devoted to dribbling, shooting or even talking about basketball.
This love and devotion to hoops is something that drives Bell, who is affectionately called Woo by everyone, to be the best she can.
This summer Woo continued to hone her skills as she recently returned home from Columbus, Ohio as a member of the U.S. Junior Nationals Sports Festival.
Woo joined eight other girls from Louisiana and Mississippi to form the team that won the overall girl's championship with a 9-0 record. Woo's team competed against players from Canada, Alabama, Colorado, Florida, Ohio, Washington, Wyoming, Oregon, Illinois, Michigan, Missouri and Texas. In addition to the overall championship, she was also selected First Team All-American Junior Nationals.
During the tournament she led her team in assists and rebounds and scored 10 or more points in each of the nine games.
The experience for Woo was a great one.
"I was scared at first because I didn't know any of the players and I just didn't know what to expect. When we started practicing it was just basketball and all my fears went away. I enjoyed meeting new people and competing," she said.
Shelia Bell, Woo's mother said, "basketball is something that has given her purpose and brought the family together as well as the entire community. We love to support Woo. She loves basketball and we love her. The way she is committed to it is a beautiful thing and we are there for every single game," said Sheila.
In the Bell clan, every family member has a Broad Street High School Lady Jaguars basketball schedule on their refrigerator as to know when each game is and even when they are canceled.
"The support I get from my family is amazing. My mom and dad (Tony and Sheila) do everything in their power to give me every opportunity to play basketball and be successful," said Woo.
"If no one else is there for me you can bet Tony and Sheila Bell will be there," she added with a laugh.
Woo and her family live in the Bolivar County village of Duncan where there isn't much to do for a kid beyond walking the streets, riding bicycles, playing a game of kickball or shooting hoops.
The places to play ball in Duncan are limited to the basketball court at Brooks Elementary School where grass outlines can be found throughout the asphalt and the rims are uneven with paint chipped backboards.
For a young lady the options are usually restricted to a portable hoop in front of ones house, but the talented 15 year old rarely has a problem getting picked by the boys, but that is typically when the high school season is over for Woo.
"Basketball is everything to me. When I play I feel my mind is clear and I can relax from any troubles I may have. Playing against the boys is tough, but I can handle it. There aren't that many girls that play for real in Duncan anyway," said Woo.
Basketball may be everything to Woo, but grades are clearly first and foremost. Woo was the salutatorian in her eighth grade class and this past school year, which was her freshman year she brought home A's and B's.
"I love basketball, but my mom made it clear that in order to play you have to get really good grades and that's encourages me to always stay on top of my school work," she added.
This past season Woo made the All-District team and was selected as a member of The Bolivar Commercial's All-Area Girl's Basketball Team. She led her team with 16 points per game and 16 rebounds per game.
With everything she accomplished last season and this summer, Woo is excited about the upcoming basketball year for the Lady Jaguars.
"I am just looking forward to doing all I can to help lead our team and go further in the playoffs," Woo said.
The Cleveland High Lady Wildcats swept the Yazoo City Lady Indians Tuesday in a Region 3-4A fast pitch softball doubleheader in Cleveland.
The Lady Wildcats used some dynamic pitching from Briana Garner in the first game to earn a 15-0 win. Garner pitched a three inning complete game. She faced nine batters and struck out seven of them with out yielding a hit in the victory.