Friday, February 15, 2019






Moody Tops 1A/5A, Benjamin Russell Leads 6A after Day 1 of AHSAA State Wrestling Tourney

HUNTSVILLE – Moody and Benjamin Russell high schools held slim leads after day one as the AHSAA 2019 State Wrestling Championships got underway at the Von Braun Center here Thursday.
   The Blue Devils led defending state champion Arab by three points, 69-66, after the quarterfinal round of Class 1A/5A concluded Thursday night. Scottsboro, the 2019 duals champs in 1A/5A, was third with 62 points.
   Benjamin Russell’s Wildcats wrestlers totaled 66 points in Thursday’s Class 6A competition with Wetumpka second with 63.5, followed by McAdory (55) and defending 6A Oxford was fourth with 51 points.  
    Wrestling gets underway Friday morning at 9:30 a.m., with Class 7A joining the action. All divisions will wrestle through the semifinals of the winner’s division and consolation division on Friday.  The 64th AHSAA championships will conclude Saturday with consolation finals at 9 a.m., followed by the championship finals beginning at 11:30 a.m.
    All matches are being live-streamed over the NFHS Network’s subscriber-based platform  by TrackWrestling.
     Among the top individual efforts Thursday was  Spanish Fort sophomore Gabriel Warren (72-7), who  pinned Ethan England of Hartselle in his first match at 1:04 and then pinned Gavin Strain of Robertsdale at 2:34 to tie and set the AHSAA and NFHS national record for pins in a season. He has 69 pins among his 72 wins on the year heading into Friday’s semifinals.
     The previous National and State Record (68) was set by Scottsboro’s Brandon Womack in 2014.
     Steven Bell of McAdory had pins at 0:53 and 2:51 to move to advance to the Class 6A semifinals at 132 pounds. The No. 1 seed from the South Super Sectional is now 89-0 and needs one win to tie the state record for most wins in a season (90) set by Macon Edwards of Fultondale, who graduated last year. Bell could break that record if he can win the state title.
     Teammate Turner Black (88-1) could tie the record with two wins over the next two days. He had two quick win at 182 pounds to also advance to the semifinals.
    Other highlights include:

·       Alexandria senior Christian Knop (69-0) had little trouble extending his state-record match winning streak to 232 – winning both matches Friday with pins at 1:52 and 1:27. He is just two wins away from completing four straight years without a defeat and would become the first wrestling in AHSAA history to will straight state championships with undefeated seasons.

·       Cory Land of Moody, a freshman ,moved to the 106-pound semifinals undefeated at 45-0 with one win by pin and a 17-0 technical fall win in the quarterfinals.

·       Sophomore Jacob Holland of Arab improved to 68-5 with two pins in the opposite site of the 106-pound bracket to also move to the semifinals.

·       Arab freshman Bronson Jackson (40-6) won both matches Thursday with pins in less than a minute – with times of 0:59 and 0:48.

·       Senior Rashad Clark (64-2) of Moody posted a pin and a technical fall in his two wins advance to the 152-pound semifinals.

·       Scottsboro senior Kolton Clark (34-1) opened the meet with a pin in 21 seconds and followed with another pin at 1:58 to advance to the semis at 182 pounds. Defending 1A/5A 285-pound champion Brandon Womack (17-1) had a pin in his first match and won a tough battle over Skylar Payne of Alexandria 4-0 to move to the semis Friday.

·       In the 220-pound Class 6A competition, Carlos Figueroa of Homewood improved to 42-0 with pins at 38 seconds and 1:48 to reach the semis.

·       Xander McWilliams of Wetumpka, the top seed at 106 pounds from the South Super Sectional, had two wins to advance to Friday’s semifinals.

·       170-pounder Sam Ingram of Chelsea wrestled for only 2 minutes and one second to win both matches to move into the 6A semifinals. His first win came with a pin at 39 seconds and his quarterfinal pin took 1:22.

Defending State Champions Thompson, Oxford, Arab Claim Super Sectional Wrestling Titles Saturday

   MONTGOMERY – Defending state champions Thompson (7A), Oxford (6A) and Arab (1A/5A) made strong statements Saturday by winning class titles at the AHSAA Super Sectional Wrestling Championships Saturday.
    Thompson posted 303.5 points to win the Class 7A South Super Sectional crown at Montgomery’s Garrett Coliseum. Hoover, with 191, finished second. Vestavia Hills out-pointed Bob Jones 241-212 to win the 7A North Super Sectional at the Birmingham CrossPlex’s Bill Harris Arena.
    Oxford won the 6A North championship by the slimmest of margins over Clay-Chalkville, 181.5  to 178 at Birmingham, and Wetumpka edged McAdory 196 to 193 to win the 6A South title. high schools begin defense Friday of the AHSAA state wrestling championship each won in 2018.
   Arab managed 267.5 points to claim the North 1A/5A championship over 2019 1A/5A duals champ Scottsboro (212), and Saint James won the South 1A/5A title at Garrett Coliseum with 263 points. Alexandria was second with 203.
   The top four finishers in each weight division at each site qualified to advance to the
   64th AHSAA State Championships at Huntsville’s Von Braun Center Feb. 14-16.
       Alexandria senior Chris Knop extended his state-record consecutive match winning streak to 230 posting four wins at Montgomery in the 1A/5A 195-pound weight class. He had a 13-6 decision over Ranburne’s Christian Smith (39-5) in Saturday’s championship match. If Knop can win the state championship next week, it will be his fourth in a row and would make him the first wrestler in AHSAA history to win four straight titles going undefeated each season.
       Freshman Gabriel Warren, a freshman at Spanish Fort competing in the 120-pound weight class. His head coach J.T. Gosnell reports that Warren (70-7) posted three pins to improve his total to 67 for the season at the 6A competition at Garrett Coliseum and moved to within one pin of the national record (68), which was set by Scottsboro’s Brandon Womack in 2014. He lost a 14-4 major decision in the finals to Wetumpka sophomore Kyler Adams (61-3) Saturday.
    The NFHS Network is partnering with TrackWrestling live-streamed both Super Sectionals and will also live-stream the State Championships over the NFHS Network’s subscriber-based platform next week. Go to for more details.
    Unbeaten wrestlers who advanced out of the Super Sectionals were, in Class 7AMaxwell Kauffman of Central-Phenix City (61-0) at 145 pounds; Grissom 106-pound freshman Zaderian Toney of Bob Jones (18-0) at 106 pounds; and Tyler Ivey of Grissom (44-0) at 120;  Class 6A: McAdory senior Steven Bell (87-0) at 132 pounds; and Carlos Miguel Figueroa of Homewood (40-0) at 220 pounds; in Class 1A/5A: Alexandria’s Knop (67-0) at 195 pounds; Trey Gaines of Saint James at 145 pounds; and Moody freshman Cory Land (43-0) at 106 pounds.


AHSAA South Super Section Wrestling Championships
Garrett Coliseum, Montgomery
Saturday’s Final Results
Top four individual qualifiers in each weight advance to the AHSAA State Wrestling Championships at the Von Braun Center in Huntsville, Feb. 14-16.

Thompson 303.5; Hoover 191; Smiths Station 149.5; Oak Mountain 128.5; Auburn 125.5; Prattville 86; Central-Phenix City 61; Lee-Montgomery 54; Tuscaloosa County 46; Foley 40.

106 Pounds:
Yanni Vines, Thompson (57-13), Fr., over Quintez Clayton, Jeff Davis (8-3), Sr. (Fall 2:38)
113 Pounds: Dylan Lesueur, Thompson (46-2), Sr., over Nick Smith, Hoover (44-6), So. (Dec 8-3)
120 Pounds:
James Latona, Thompson (55-11), Fr., over Patrick Neal, Oak Mountain (29-12), So. (TF-1.5 5:54 (23-8)
126 Pounds:
Chandler Akins, Thompson, (50-6), Sr., over Sullivan Tipton, Oak Mountain (42-6), Jr. (Dec 3-0)
132 Pounds:  
Cole Thomas, Oak Mountain (22-4), Sr., over Devin Stone, Smiths Station (43-14), 8th, (MD 12-0)
138 Pounds:
Gabe Hixenbaugh, Thompson (41-3), Sr.,  over Isaac Arnett, Smiths Station (40-20), Sr., (Technical Fall (20-5)
145 Pounds:
Maxwell Kauffman, Central - Phenix City (61-0), Sr., over Nathan Roberts, Thompson (28-12); Sr., (Fall 3:57)
152 Pounds:
Dallas Free, Prattville (13-3), Jr., over Josiah Campbell, Thompson (36-27), Sr. (Fall 3:53)
160 Pounds:
Derek Hussey, Thompson (47-4), Sr. over Josh Reynolds, Hoover (40-14), Sr. (Fall 2:54)
170 Pounds:
Ashunti Perry, Thompson (34-16), Jr. over Alex Fouts, Smiths Station (44-5), Jr. (Technical Fall (20-5)
182 Pounds:
Harrison Kinsey, Oak Mountain (36-15), Jr. over J.T. Foster, Hoover (31-17), So. (Dec 5-2)
195 Pounds:
Michael Jackson, Thompson (24-7), Jr. over Jack White, Hoover ( 11-2), Fr. (Forfeit)
220 Pounds:
Isaac McAdams, Thompson ( 46-17), Sr. over Bryce Carnes, Hoover (20-4), Sr. (Fall 1:39)
285 Pounds:
Ellis Adams, Hoover (8-2), Sr. over Jeremiah Coney, Thompson ( 20-5), So. (Fall 5:56)

Wetumpka 196; McAdory 193; Benjamin Russell 185.5; Gulf Shores 167.5; Spanish Fort 150; Chelsea 136.5; Helena 129.5; Opelika 96; Brookwood 69.5; Pelham 64.5.

106 Pounds:
Xander McWilliams, Wetumpka (64-4), So. over Peter Henderson, McAdory (74-9), So. (Dec 5-2)
113 Pounds:
Michal Moran, Helena (42-6), Jr. over Adam Byerman, Chelsea (38-17), So. (Dec 9-4)
120 Pounds:
Kyler Adams, Wetumpka (61-3), So. over Gabriel Warren, Spanish Fort (70-7), Fr. (MD 14-4)
126 Pounds:
Will Miller, Helena (46-6), So. over Bryce Wanagat, Pelham (37-12), Fr. (Dec 11-4)
132 Pounds:
Steven Bell, McAdory (87-0), Sr. over Robert Graham, Benjamin Russell (42-14), Sr. (MD 16-6)
138 Pounds:
Gage Hudson, Gulf Shores (51-5), Sr. over Kaleb Jones, Wetumpka (56-16), Sr. (MD 10-0)
145 Pounds:
Cole Blackwell, Wetumpka (58-6), Sr. over Micah Brasher, Gulf Shores (31-9), Sr. (Dec 5-2)
152 Pounds:
Saxon Coker, Benjamin Russell (60-8), Jr. over William West, Gulf Shores (43-9), Sr. (Dec 4-2)
160 Pounds:
John Paul Uter, Gulf Shores (41-7), Jr. over Jake Snow, Spanish Fort (62-14), Jr. (Fall 3:09)
170 Pounds:
Sam Ingram, Chelsea (56-4), Sr. over Hezekiah Hunter, Benjamin Russell (39-9), Jr. (Dec 5-0)
182 Pounds:
Turner O’Brian Black, McAdory (86-1), Sr. over Noah Barclay, Wetumpka (51-3), Sr. (Dec 3-2)
195 Pounds:
Braiden Williams, Baldwin County (41-1), Sr. over Elliot Gage, Chelsea (41-8), Jr. (Fall 4:53)
220 Pounds:
Nathan Dunaway, Helena (38-3), Jr. over Damien Lawry, Benjamin Russell (29-7), So. (Fall 1:55)
285 Pounds:
Curtis Norris, Benjamin Russell (35-7), Jr. over Cameron Reese, Opelika (42-5), So. (Fall 3:42)

Saint James 263; Alexandria 203; Ranburne 197; Tallassee 193; Cleburne County 166; Elmore County 148; Weaver 134; Beauregard 130; Piedmont 204.5; Montevallo 85.

106 Pounds:
 Travis Bellar, Weaver (44-22), So. over Tennison Norton, Saint James (34-7), So. (Fall 1:37)
113 Pounds:
Jackson Elder, American Christian (30-1), Sr. over Grant Hall, Tallassee (41-9), Sr. (Technical Fall (20-5)
120 Pounds:
Jemari Harris, Montevallo (38-4), Jr. over Wes Christie, Saint James (33-8), Sr. (Fall 5:23)
126 Pounds:
Fletcher Swindall, Alexandria (59-1), Sr. over Jackson Howard, Saint James (38-2), Sr. (Fall 3:14)
132 Pounds:
Jaden New, Alexandria (62-2), Fr. over Cody Souder, Weaver (61-10_, So. (Dec 5-4)
138 Pounds:
Shane Beason, Cleburne County (38-5), Sr. over Gabe Robbins, Saint James (39-4), Jr. (Dec 8-3)
145 Pounds:
Trey Gaines, Saint James (26-0), Sr. over Mathew Williamson, Cleburne County (39-5), So. (Fall 1:33)
152 Pounds:
Zachary Williamson, Cleburne County (41-3), Jr. over Mason Bell, Tallassee (54-8), So. (Fall 1:44)
160 Pounds:
Travis Hamilton, Saint James (20-3), Sr. over Spencer Jordan, Ranburne (37-9), Jr. (Dec 6-4)
170 Pounds:
Mac Johnson, Saint James (37-3), Sr. over Cody Gilson, Tallassee ( 49-7), Sr. (Dec 7-6)
182 Pounds:
Andy Baker, Tallassee (21-1), Sr. over Kyle Hugley, Beauregard (49-3), Sr. (Dec 7-2)
195 Pounds:
Christian Knop, Alexandria (67-0), Sr. over Christian Smith, Ranburne (39-5), Jr. (Dec 13-6)
220 Pounds:
Sean Caleb Allison, Weaver (65-3), Sr. over Ben Buchanan, Ranburne (11-6), Jr. (Fall 2:51)
285 Pounds:
Evan Cooper, Piedmont (39-2), Sr. over Skylar Payne, Alexandria (41-16), Sr. (Fall 0:28)

AHSAA North Super Section Wrestling Championships
Birmingham CrossPlex, Bill Harris Arena
Saturday’s Final Results
Top four individual qualifiers in each weight advance to the AHSAA State Wrestling Championships at the Von Braun Center in Huntsville, Feb. 14-16.

Vestavia Hills 241; Bob Jones 212; Grissom 145.5; Huntsville 130; Hewitt-Trussville 126; Spain Park 81.5; Mountain Brook 71.5; Sparkman 50; James Clemens 46; Florence 38.
106 Pounds:
Zaderian Toney, Bob Jones (18-0), Sr. over Ryan Summerlin, Vestavia Hills (47-6), Fr. (TB-1 6-4)
113 Pounds: Zaevian Toney, Bob Jones (26-6), Sr. over Christopher Hays, Vestavia Hills (32-20), So. (Fall 4:21)
120 Pounds:
Tyler Ivey, Grissom (44-0), Sr. over Jim Wilson, Bob Jones (40-8), Sr. (Fall 1:42)
126 Pounds:
Samuel Jaggears, Gadsden City (40-1), Jr. over Cordell Ellison, Sparkman (33-9, Sr. (Dec 2-1)
132 Pounds: Jack Rivers, Spain Park (53-8), Sr. over Lucas Reaves, Hewitt-Trussville (27-18), Fr. (Fall 1:24)
138 Pounds:
Nathaniel Nailen, Vestavia Hills (46-11), Sr. over Grayson Curtis (Huntsville) 26-13, Jr. (Dec 6-1)
145 Pounds:
Stone Barden, Hewitt-Trussville (30-1), Sr. over Jordan Whalen, Bob Jones (32-5), Sr. (Dec 8-6)
152 Pounds:
Cale Land, Hewitt-Trussville (36-5), Sr. over Cole Williams, Huntsville (32-11), Sr. (Dec 11-4)
160 Pounds:
Gabriel Pittman, Bob Jones (27-9), Sr. over Carson Casteel, Florence (30-8), So. (MD 9-1)
170 Pounds:
Peter Dazzio, Vestavia Hills (42-3), Sr. over Cal Francovitch, (Bob Jones (24-8), Sr. (Technical Fall (15-0)
182 Pounds:
George Francovitch, Bob Jones (19-1), Sr. over Jack Higgins, Mountain Brook (39-7), Jr. (Dec 9-6)
195 Pounds:
Rob Barrentine, Vestavia Hills (28-7), Sr. over Harrison Hemmerly, Grissom (25-7), Sr. (Fall 3:19)
220 Pounds:
Grant McLean, Vestavia Hills (29-10), Sr. over Cole Batson, Huntsville (35-6), Jr. (Fall 5:32)
285 Pounds:
Douglas Thompson, Vestavia Hills (43-7), Sr. over Jaxon Bast, Spain Park (55-5), Jr. (Fall 3:46)

Oxford 181.5; Clay-Chalkville 178; Gardendale 173; Mae Jemison 125.5; Fort Payne 125; Homewood 117; Minor 113; Pell City 112.5; Athens 84; Hartselle 81.

106 Pounds:
David Miguel, Fort Payne (32-10), So. over Melton Powe, Gardendale (46-10), Fr. (Dec 4-2)
113 Pounds:
George Vazquez, Pinson Valley (29-2), Sr. over Gabe Sweat, Buckhorn (34-11), So. (Fall 1:09)
120 Pounds:
Corey Jones, Shades Valley (29-10), Jr. over Cote Blalock, Fort Payne (43-8), Fr. (Dec 9-6)
126 Pounds:
Landon Burrage, Oxford (48-10), Sr. over Devyn Scoggins, Gardendale (51-7), Jr. (Dec 8-6)
132 Pounds:
J.C. Williams, Clay-Chalkville (35-7), Sr. over Wesley Slick, Oxford (43-8), Sr. (Dec 6-4)
138 Pounds:
Deacon Cowart, Athens (30-5), Sr. over Keenan Wyatt, Gardendale (41-10), Fr. (MD 9-1)
145 Pounds:
Brandon Seawright, Minor (33-2), Jr. over Jakob Chisolm, Oxford (55-4), So. (SV-1 4-2)
152 Pounds:
Reed Hill, Oxford (55-3), Jr. over Jason Minchew, Shades Valley (36-4), So. (Fall 3:31)
160 Pounds:
Jackson Stocks, Pell City (45-4), Sr. over Zaquerius Harris, Columbia (33-10), Sr. (SV-1 7-5)
170 Pounds:
Theo Maxwell, Clay-Chalkville (38-5), Sr. over Kendrick Young, Oxford (31-25), So. (Dec 8-2)
182 Pounds:
Jordan Hunter, Buckhorn (22-2), Sr. over Derrick Orvik, Gardendale ( 28-8), So. (Fall 1:00)
195 Pounds:
A.J. Talton, Clay-Chalkville (42-1), Sr. over Riley Kuhn, Fort Payne (42-6), So. (Dec 6-1)
220 Pounds:
Carlos Miguel Figueroa, Homewood (40-0), Sr. over Kobe Shumaker, Oxford (26-16), So. (Fall 2:13)
285 Pounds:
Jack Jones, Clay-Chalkville (40-1), Sr. over Avion Woods , Hueytown (23-5), (Dec 5-3)

Arab 267.5; Scottsboro 212; Moody 189.5; Mortimer Jordan 180.5; Hayden 140.5; Southside-Gadsden 140.5; Jasper 122; Dora 111; Sprngville 106; St. John Paul II Catholic 100.
106 Pounds:
Cory Land, Moody (43-0), Fr. over Jacob Holland, Arab (66-5), So. (Dec 8-1)
113 Pounds:
Parker Dodd, Moody (55-10), So. over Shawn Ammerman, Madison County (27-10), Jr. (Fall 2:32)
120 Pounds:
Jacob Dease, Southside (52-5), So. over Bronson Jackson, Arab (38-6), Fr. (Dec 7-3)
126 Pounds:
Carlos Chavez, Dora (43-3), Sr. over Ryan St. John, Hayden (66-7), Sr. (Dec 13-11)
132 Pounds:
Sebastian Oswalt, Mortimer Jordan (45-9), Jr. over Patrick Lawler, Arab (73-12), 8th. (Dec 5-3)
138 Pounds:
Garrett McClendon, Arab (63-7), Sr. over Evan Vieira, New Hope ( 32-5), Jr. (Fall 3:16)
145 Pounds:
Zeke Smotherman, Madison County (27-4), Jr. over Sage Hughes, Moody (62-7), Sr. (Dec 4-2)
152 Pounds:
Rashad Clark, Moody (62-2), Sr. over Jordan Kiley, Mortimer Jordan (42-10), Sr. (Dec 5-2)
160 Pounds:
Connor Calfee, Scottsboro (27-4), Sr. over Jayson Spencer, St. John Paul II Catholic (35-2), Sr. (Fall 1:48)
170 Pounds:
Gerard McArron, St. John Paul II Catholic (32-2), Sr. over Damian Ramirez, Scottsboro ( 34-3), Sr. (Dec 11-8)
182 Pounds:
Kolton Clark, Scottsboro (32-1), Sr. over Sam Atchley, Arab (60-12), Jr. (MD 14-4)
195 Pounds:
Cole Fuller, Corner (45-6), So. over Dashton Rush, Jasper (23-8), Jr. (Injury default,  5:58)
220 Pounds:
Caleb Anderson, Scottsboro (28-6), Sr. over Skyler Mizzell, Saint Clair Co. (55-4), Sr. (Dec 4-3)
285 Pounds:
Michael Barnes, Mortimer Jordan (36-5), Sr. over Ronny Henderson, Dora (42-6), Jr.
(Fall 0:19)

Defending State Champions Thompson, Oxford, Arab Begin Defense of Titles Friday at Super Sectionals

   MONTGOMERY – Thompson, Oxford and Arab high schools begin defense Friday of the AHSAA state wrestling championship each won in 2018.
   All three schools will be among the favorites as the 2019 AHSAA State Wrestling Championships open with the North and South Super Sectional Championships at Birmingham and Montgomery, respectively, Friday with first matches beginning at 10 a.m. The top four wrestlers in each division’s weight class will advance to the 64th AHSAA State Championships at Huntsville’s Von Braun Center Feb. 14-16.
   Class 7A Thompson, coached by Shawn Weltzin, will be competing in the South Super Sectional at Montgomery’s Garrett Coliseum. Defending Class champs Oxford and Class 1A/5A Arab will be competing at the North Super Sectional at the Birmingham CrossPlex Bill Harris Arena.
    Weltzin’s Warriors won the AHSAA Class 7A duals’ title last month. A few days prior on Jan. 22, Thompson claimed the school’s 500th career dual match win with a 57-7 triumph over Hoover in the state duals semifinals. The Warriors feature a strong lineup of veteran wrestlers led by senior 138-pounder Gabe Hixenbaugh (38-3), who won the state title at 132 pounds last season for his fourth state crown overall. He was 53-3 in 2018. Thompson will be hoping to win its seventh state title in the last nine years.
    Oxford, coached by Kristopher Routon, won the Class 6A duals title in January. The Yellow Jackets will be vying for their third straight 6A crown. Sophomore Jakob Chisolm (53-3), who won the 126-pound state title in 2018 with a 57-14 slate, has moved up to 132 pounds this season.
    Arab, coached by Mike Pruitt, is anchored by 195-pounder Zac Pugh (61-12) and 138-pounder Garrett McClendon (58-7). McClendon finished second last season at 138 pounds.
    One wrester worth watching closely is Alexandria senior Chris Knop, who finished 50-0 last season to win the Class 1A/5A title at 182 pounds to extend his unbeaten streak to 164 in a row. He will be coming into the Super Sectional at Birmingham with a 63-0 record in the same weight class and an AHSAA state-record 226-match winning streak. Mike Sutton of Weaver held the record (201) from 1999-2004. Knop is just the second wrestler in state history to win more than 200 straight matches in a row and if he can finish the season unbeaten, he will become the first wrestler in AHSAA history to win four straight titles with unbeaten records.
    Another wrestler chasing an elusive AHSAA state record is Gabriel Warren, a freshman at Spanish Fort competing in the 120-pound weight class. His head coach J.T. Gosnell reports that Warren (67-6) has 64 wins by pin this season, which currently ranks tied for second in a single season with Brandon Womack, who set the NFHS nation record with 68 in 2014.
   Classes 1A/5A and 6A kick off Friday’s wrestling at 10 a.m. Class 7A will have its first round of competition in the third session Friday set for the early afternoon.
    The Super Sectional competition concludes Saturday with consolation round four at 9:30 a.m., followed by the consolation semifinals, then finals and consolation finals.
    The NFHS Network is partnering with TrackWrestling will live-stream the event at both sites. Go to to for more details.

Murr & Baldwin Reach Scoring Milestones to Grab AHSAA Prep Basketball Spotlight

   MONTGOMERY – Lindsay Lane Academy junior guard Tommy Murr and Pleasant Home High School senior River Baldwin each reached major milestones in their AHSAA basketball careers last week to share the AHSAA Basketball Spotlight as the regular season came to an end.
    Murr scored 41 points and eight assists to lead the Lions to an 81-61 victory over Phillips to push him over the 4,000-point mark for his career. Brandon Green, who is averaging 26 ppg this season, had 24 points for the Bears.
     Murr, a 6-foot-1 guard, has scored 1,236 points this season in 28 games and is leading the nation with 44.3 points per game.  He has scored 40 or more points 20 of those games, including eight over 50 and one over 60. Murr is shooting 86.7 percent from the foul line (319-of-368) and has sank 101 3-pointers on the year heading into this week’s Class 1A, Area 15 tournament.
     The son of head coach Steve Murr has 4,004 points for his career in 143 varsity games to become the fourth boys’ player in AHSAA history to go over the 4,000-point career mark. The AHSAA’s all-time scoring leader is Jeremy Monceaux, who amassed 4,555 points in 124 games over his final four seasons at Parkway Christian in Birmingham from 1998-2002. Currently the head boys’ basketball coach at Clay-Chalkville, Monceaux finished his prep career with 6,354 points in 198 games – including 1,799 points in 74 games playing on the high school varsity while still in middle school in Louisiana. His dad Dave Monceaux was also his head coach.
    Frankie Sullivan of R.C. Hatch High School in Uniontown totaled 4,224 points in a career that spanned 2005-2008 (139 games) for the Bobcats. And John Drew of J.F. Shields High School in Beatrice, totaled 4,018 points from 1969-1972 for the Panthers. He went on to score 15,291 points in 739 games in an NBA pro career that spanned 11 seasons from 1974-1985.
    Murr needs 98 points this season to break the single-season scoring record (1,333) set by Monceaux in the 1999-2000 season and 1,253 in the 1998-99 season. Drew had 1,320 to average 44.0 ppg in 1970-71 for J.F. Shields and Daryl Wilson of South Lamar totaled 1,243 points for the Stallions in 1991-92.
    Robert Whisenant of Ryan High School in Morgan County set the AHSAA single-season scoring record averaging 46.3 ppg in 1969-70. He had 1,112 points in 24 games.
     Pleasant Home’s 6-foot-5 senior center Baldwin went had 32 points and 14 rebounds in a 49-21 win over Kinston and followed with 30 points and 14 boards in a 58-34 victory over Straughn to close out the regular season. The Lady Eagles are hosting the Class 1A, Area 2 tournament this week. Baldwin, who earned MVP honors as Pleasant Home captured its first Class 1A state volleyball championship last October, was recently chosen to participate in the 2018 McDonald’s All-America Game.
     She has scored 534 points and cleared 288 rebounds this season in 21 games and is averaging 25.9 points ppg and 13.2 rpg. For her career, she has 3,034 points scored in 131 games and 1,469 rebounds – an average of 11.2 for her career that has spanned five seasons (2014-2019).   Candace Byrd of Tanner is the all-time career rebounding leader in the AHSAA with 2,065 boards in a career that ended in 2000. Byrd is currently the head girls’ coach at R.A. Hubbard.
    The Florida State signee, who was 23-of-30 shooting (76.7%) in the last two games also had 671 blocked shots, 5.1 per game. Her blocked shots currently rank second all-time in the AHSAA behind Danisha Malone of Clements, who finished her career in 2013 with 721 for the Colts.
     Baldwin is the 20th girls’ player, according to the AHSAA Record Book, to score 3,000 points and the first since Geneva County guard Lacy Stafford, who closed out her career with 3,045 in 2016. Courtney Strain of Woodland set the AHSAA record with 5,283 points in six seasons for the Bobcats from 2004-05 to 2009-10. She is now the head girls’ coach at Handley High School.
    Other top performances reported from the last week of the regular season include:

Had 41 points, 13 rebounds and five assists to lead Thomasville to a 68-66 win over Monroe County.
HAROLD KING, OPP: Sank a 3 –point goal with three seconds remaining to lift the Bobcats past Andalusia 53-50. It was his only points on the night and the first Opp win over Andalusia in the last three seasons.
TREY LEWIS, MILLRY: Nailed a 3-pointer at the buzzer to send the game into overtime as Millry beat Sweet Water 71-69. Lewis finished with 21 points and eight rebounds.
KRISTON DAVIS, BAKER: Led the Hornets past Blount 77-72 in overtime with 30 points.
DEANTONI GORDON, LEFLORE: Scored 30 points, including 22 in the second half, as LeFlore defeated Faith Academy 61-38.
TAE WHETSTONE, SHELBY COUNTY: Keyed the Wildcats’ 49-42 win over Jackson-Olin with 25 points, seven rebounds and three steals.
B.J, COMER, PRATTVILLE CHRISTIAN: Had 27 points in a 67-49 win over Class 7A Prattville and a career-high 34 points in PCA’s 76-58 victory over Calera. He also had nine rebounds for the Panthers (26-3) in that game.
DEMOND ROBINSON, LEE-MONTGOMERY: Grabbed 11 rebounds and eight points in a 56-55 win over Carver-Montgomery to reach the 1,000-rebound milestone in his career for the Generals. 
JOHN COLE NORRIS, HUNTSVILLE: Scored 24 points in a 61-55 win over Decatur.
REGINALD BROWN, MARBURY: Scored 27 points as the Bulldogs downed Autaugaville 73-69.
KENDRICK CALHOUN, B.T. WASHINGTON: Led the Tuskegee school to a 55-47 win over Elmore County with 12 rebounds and 10 blocked shots.

Scored 41 points and cleared 21 rebounds as the Bulldogs beat Houston County 89-43 in the first round of the Class 2A, Area 3 tourney at Hartford Monday night.
KELSEY THOMPSON, DAVIDSON: Sank two key free throws in the final seconds to finish with 14 seconds as the Warriors beat Biloxi (MS) 41-38.
THANIYA MARKS, WENONAH: Had 28 points and 14 rebounds as Dragons beat Parker 72-15 last Wednesday. She also had four blocked shots.
TIARRA BOGGS, WILLILAMSON: Scored all 19 points in the second half to rally the Lions from a 22-point deficit to a 49-45 come-from-behind win over UMS-Wright.
Had 30 points in the Lady Bucks’ 59-47 win over NYA VALENTINE, McGILL-TOOLEN CATHOLIC: Turned in a career-high 32 points as the Jackets beat Faith Academy 60-48.
ELSIE HARRIS, B.C. RAIN: Scored 32 points in a 57-40 win over Baker.
Totaled 17 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists in a 63-57 home win over Hillcrest-Evergreen
KATHLEEN WHEELER, PRICEVILLE: Recorded 24 points, five assists and four steals in a 59-40 win over Lawrence County.
BRE’ANNA RHODES, CARVER-MONTGOMERY: Had 27 points and 10 rebounds in Friday's 68-48 win at Lee-Montgomery.
GAIL WHITING, PARK CROSSING: Had 20 points, 11 rebounds and six steals in a 56-42 win over Sidney Lanier for her seventh double-double of the season.
NIYA BOYKIN, BALDWIN COUNTY: Led the Tigers past Foley 63-62 with 18 points and 15 rebounds.
MAKAYLA FOSTER, VIGOR: Totaled 18 points and 15 rebounds as the Wolves downed Escambia County 63-28.

Homewood Captures Boys’ & Girls’ 6A State Indoor Track Titles as 2019 AHSAA State Meet Concludes

BIRMINGHAM – Hoover (7A), Homewood (6A), Scottsboro (4A/5A) and Winfield (1A/3A) high schools emerged as boys’ state champions Saturday while Saint James (1A/3A, Montgomery Catholic (4A/5A), Homewood (6A) and Mountain Brook (7A) captured girls’ state titles as the 49th AHSAA State Indoor Track & Field Championships concluded at the Birmingham CrossPlex.
    Homewood, coached by Thomas Esslinger, was the only school to capture boys’ and girls’ crowns. The Patriots boys won their second Class 6A title in a row and their fifth in the last seven years amassing 95.5 points. Northridge finished second with 83.5 and Opelika was third with 78.  Homewood’s girls won their third consecutive 6A crown totaling 124.5 points. Pelham was second with 95 and St. Paul’s Episcopal took third place with 53.
   In Class 7A, Coach Devon Hind’s Hoover’s boys cruised to the Bucs’ third straight title and also their fifth in the last seven seasons. The Bucs accumulated  105 points with  strong effort from start to finish. Oak Mountain finished second with 51 points, clinching the runner-up spot with a strong third-place finish in the 4x400 meter relay in the last race of the day. The Eagles started the race in fifth place but picked up six points and moved ahead of Vestavia Hills and Hewitt-Trussville to seal the runner-up. The Rebels and Huskies tied for third over with 49 points each.  Mountain Brook’s Lady Spartans out-pointed runner-up Baker 71 to 60.5 to win the school’s   first state crown since 2013.
    Scottsboro’s boys totaled 76 to win  the Class 4A/5A state championship. It was the Wildcats’’ second title in the last three seasons.  Ramsay finished second with 65 points and Beauregard was third with 36.  Montgomery Catholic won its first girls’ state title edging runner-up Ramsay 80-66. Scottsboro was third with 59.
   And in Class 1A/3A, the Winfield boys managed 105 points to capture its third state since 2015. Bayside Academy was second with 84 points and Altamont third with 77. Saint James won its first Class 1A/3A state girls championship rolling up 117 points. Whitesburg Christian finished second with 103 and Providence Christian had 76.5 to take third place.
    Saint James junior Presley Miles sparked the Lady Trojans’ championship capturing four Class 1A/3A individual state titles winning the 3,200 meters (11:10.48) and the 800 meters (2:18.47) on Friday and closing out the 49th AHSAA State Indoor Track & Field State Championships with first-place finishes in the 400-meter dash (59.03) and the 1,600 meters (5:18.47).  She accounted for 40 of2019  Class 1A/3A state champion Saint James’ 117 points in the meet. The Trojans moved from Class 4A to Class 3A to begin the 2018-19 school year.
   A quick look at past AHSAA indoor track results showed several competitors winning the 800, 1,600 and 3,200 meters events at state indoor meets. However, Miles became the first girls’ participant in AHSAA history to win all four running events at the AHSAA State Indoor Track Championships.
    She was also the first to win four individual events since St. Paul’s Episcopal’s Charlotte Krausse won four at the 2016 state indoor meet. Krausse won the triple jump, long jump, high jump and 60-meter hurdles at that meet. Another track standout from St. Paul’s, Camille Root, won four individual events at the 1995 and 1996 state meets held at Priceville’s Celebration Arena. She won the 55-meter dash and 55-meter hurdles, the 400-meter dash and  the long jump both years.  Bridget Rose of Leeds was the next girls’ participant to win four events with wins in 2006 in the 55-meter dash, 55-meter hurdles, long jump and pole vault.
    Montgomery Catholic senior phenom Amaris Tyynismaa captured her fifth straight indoor state meet individual championship in a row and her first team crown. She won the 1,600 meters Saturday with a strong 5:04.02 time in the 4A/5A finals. Miles upset Tyynismaa in the 800-meter race in 2018, but she roared back to clock 4:56.31 in 2018 to set the class 4A/5A state indoor meet record.
    Tyynismaa closed out her indoor career in the 2019 meet winning the 800 and 3,200 as well. That gave her five consecutive 4A/5A state indoor titles in the 3,200 and three in the 800 and total of 13 indoor state meet titles and one second-place finish since 2015. She did not compete in the 800 in 2017. and to Miles in last year’s state meet. Saint James High School dropped to Class 3A in 2018-19.
    Senior Nicole Payne of Oak Mountain turned in the most impressive time of the day Saturday with a state record (all classes) 54.11 time in the Class 7A girls’ 400-meter finals.  She broke her own 7A record (55.24) she set in 2017 and also beat the AHSAA all-time indoor record (54.22) set by her in regular-season meet in 2018. Payne won the 400 three of the last four years – setting Class 7A records all three times: In 2016 (55.25), 2017 and 2019. Her 2018 regular-season time stood as the all-time indoor record until Saturday. She was disqualified in the event at the 2018 state meet.
     Payne also won the 60-meter dash race with a new Class 7A record time Saturday clocking 7.54 in the finals. Lauryn Hall of Sparkman set the record (7.66) in 2017.
    The top boys’ performance came in the Class 4A/5A high jump where Isaiah McKissic of Beauregard broke a 37-year old indoor record when he cleared 6-09.25. The old record (6-09) was set 37 years earlier by  Vincent “Bo” Jackson of McAdory in 1982. Jackson won the Heisman Trophy at Auburn in 1985 and had a major-league baseball and NFL football career cut short by a hip injury.
    McKissic made his winning height on his second try. It turned out to be the top high jump performance of the state meet. Oak Mountain senior Trey Allen cleared 6-09 Friday to set a new Class 7A indoor state-meet record but then moved the bar to 7-01 and missed on  all three tries. McKissic attempted to clear 6-10 but missed on all three attempts.
    Hoover’s boys’ 4x400 relay team closed out the meet with a 3:20.59 time to set the AHSAA all-time record in that event. Auburn (3:22.05) set the previous state-meet best in 2015.

STONE SHELNUTT, HEWITT-TRUSSVILLE: Turned in the best 400-meter dash time of the 2019 meet winning the Class 7A race with s time of 49.97 seconds. His time fell just short of the all-time state-meet record (48.09) set by Deante Tolbert of Auburn in 2015. Shelnutt also won the Class 7A 60-meter hurdles finals with an 8.27 time.
ETHAN STRAND, VESTAVIA HILLS: Took first place in the Class 6A 1,600-meter race with a strong time of 4:20.34 – less than three seconds off the 7A indoor state record (4:17.06 ) set by Drew Williams of Mountain Brook in 2012.
DEANTHONY COLEMAN, CARVER-MONTGOMERY: Turned in one of the top times of 2019 in the nation to win the Class 6A 60-meter hurdles in 7.89 seconds. His time was just 9/100ths of a second off the 6A indoor state record time (7.80) set by Marlon Humphrey of Hoover in 2013.
WILL STONE, HOMEWOOD: Completed a sweep of the distance events with a 4:24.55 time in the Class 6A 1,600-meter run Saturday. He won the 800 and 3,200 races Friday.
JEKOVAN RHETTA, PARKER: Won the Class 4A/5A 60-meter dash final race with a time of 6.88 seconds. He qualified with a 6.94 time.
JAMES DIXON, ALTAMONT: Won the Class 1A/3A 400-meter dash with a strong 51.26 time to just miss equaling the 1A/3A state indoor record (50.30) set by Trey Cunningham of Winfield in 2016. He finished just ahead of Tawrence Dixon of Mobile Christian, who clocked 51.31.
TAWRENCE DIXON, MOBILE CHRISTIAN: Edged teammate Cameron Alexander at the finish line in one of the closest boys’ raced of the 2019 state meet to win the Class 1A/3A 60-meter dash finals. He clocked 7.146 and Alexander crossed at 7.149.
SCOTTSBORO 4X800 RELAY: Won the 4A/5A race with a time of 8:20.19 – just four seconds off the state indoor meet mark (8:16.55) recorded by Northridge in 2016.

KIARA RISHER, JAMES CLEMENS: Set a new Class 7A indoor state meet record in the high jump with a winning height of 5-06 on her second attempt at that height. Jayden Gilbert of Bob Jones finished second equaling the old record (5-04). Julia Leonard of Mountain Brook set the record in 2015.
JASMINR RILEY, PARK CROSSING: Won the Class 6A 60-meter dash finals with a 7.50 time -- just 1/100ths of a second off the Class 6A state indoor meet record (7.49) established by Jayla Kirkland of Woodlawn in 2014. The winning time was also just 4/100ths of a second off the all-time CrossPlex record (7.46), which was set by Kirkland in 2016.
ZHEVYN JONES, RAMSAY: Set a new Class 4A/5A state indoor meet record winning the 60-meter hurdles in 8.91 seconds. St. Paul’s Lacey Dent set the previous record (9:07) in 2012. Jones qualified for the finals with an 8.93 time.
JADA CHILDERS, CENTRAL-TUSCALOOSA: Crossed the finish line at 57:02 to win the Class 4A/5A 4000-meter dash. Her time was just one stride shy of the state record (56.92) set by
Jayla Kirkland of Woodlawn at the 2017 state meet.  Jasity White of Ramsay was second to Childers in the photo  finish with a 57.10 time.   

AHSAA 49th State Indoor Track Championships Start and End with Record-Shattering Performances Friday

BIRMINGHAM – The 49th AHSAA State Indoor Track and Field Championships started with a bang and ended with a boom Friday as two state records fell in each event.
    As expected, Oak Mountain High School senior high jumper Trey Allen won the Class 7A boys event state-record clearance of 6 feet, 9 inches Friday in the opening field event of the day at the Birmingham CrossPlex.
    Hoover High School’s boys’ 4x200-meter relay team closed out the day in the final running event with a 1:28.02 time to set a new Class 7A and overall AHSAA state record.  Coach Devon Hind’s four runners, in order, were Seth Shelby, Jonathan Martin, Zach Elam and anchor J’Marri McCall. The old state-meet record (1:28.40) was set in 2016 by Opelika in Class 6A. Auburn held the Class 7A mark thanks to its winning 1:29.35 time that same year. The Bucs’ time was also ranks third nationally this season. Oak Mountain’s relay team was second Friday clocking 1:30.00, and Central-Phenix City was third at 1:30.51.
     The 7A high jump was the first boys’ field event of the meet.  He had no trouble clearing 6-09, which erased the previous Class 7A record set by Carl Nesbitt of Vestavia Hills (6-08) by one inch. The overall AHSAA state indoor championship record (6-10.25) was established in 2006 when the meet was held at Priceville’s Celebration Arena by Homewood’s Mitch Dozier.
    Allen, who cleared 7 feet for the top high jump of the season in the nation to set the CrossPlex prep record at a regular-season meet on Jan. 21, moved the bar to 7-01 to try and break his overall AHSAA record, but missed all three times.
    Defending state champion Hoover took the first-day lead in the Class 7A boys’ and girls’ competition with 31 and 29 points, respectively. Central-Phenix City’s boys was second with 29 points and Vestavia Hills had 21. McGill-Toolen Catholic totaled 27.50 points to trail the Lady Bucs by just 1.5 points heading into Saturday’s final day of competition. Auburn was two points back with 27.
   In Class 6A, Homewood’s defending state champion boys’ and girls’ teams  took a big step toward the 2019 state crown with strong showings Friday. The Lady Patriots totaled 44 points after 4 final events with Pelham second with 23. Northridge is third with 16. Homewood’s boys held an 18-point lead over Northridge after six final events, 54-38. Opelika is third with 32. 
   Scottsboro built a 35-22 lead over Trinity Presbyterian in the Class 4A/5A boys’ competition Friday with Guntersville and Arab tied for third place with 14 points. In the 4A/5A girls’ field, Montgomery Catholic totaled 31 points after five final events to lead by six points over Scottsboro (25). Ramsay is 11 points back with 20.
   Bayside Academy held a one-point 29-28 margin over Altamont in the Class 1A/3A boys’ field and Winfield had 25 points to head into Saturday’s final round in third place.  Montgomery rivals Saint James and Montgomery Academy ranked 1-2 in the girls’ competition after day one with the Trojans totaling 52 points in six events scored. The Eagles totaled 31 points and Whitesburg Christian, 30.
    Hannah Daffin of McGill-Toolen Catholic br
oke the Class 7A, overall AHSAA state meet and CrossPlex state indoor record in the shot put by almost five feet to highlight the first-day girls’ performances at the CrossPlex. Her winning with a toss of 42 feet, 8 inches came on the  first of six throws that traveled over 40 feet.
     The old record (38-0) was set by Sarah Owen of Thompson in 2016. The previous CrossPlex record (42-05.50) was set by Indiya Summerville of Northridge in 2015. Lea Townsend of Hewitt-Trussville also eclipsed the old record with 38-08 throw on her final attempt to finish second to Daffin.
Among the other top first-day individual efforts:

NICOLE PAYNE, OAK MOUNTAIN: The senior broke the Class 7A indoor state record with a 7.61 effort in the 60-meter dash prelims. Hewitt-Trussville sprinter Hope Igbinoghene was second at 7.67. The previous 7A state record (7.66) was set at the 2017 state meet by Sparkman’s Lauryn Hall.
Turned in a sub 9.0 time in the Class 7A 60-meter hurdles prelims to earn the top qualifying lane for Saturday’s finals. Teammate Kelsey White earned the second-fastest qualifying time with an 8.20 finish. Hoover’s Brittley Humphrey set the AHSAA indoor record (8.47) at the  2016 state meet.
JASMINE RILEY, PARK CROSSING: Captured the top prelim time in the Class 6A Friday in the 60-meter dash clocking 7.57,just 11/100ths of a second off the overall state indoor record set by Jayla Kirkland of Woodlawn in 2016.
AIYA FINCH, HOMEWOOD: Won the Class 6A triple jump with a strong 39-01.25 best leap.
Set a new Class 4A/5A state indoor state meet record in the 60-meter hurdles with a 8.93 performance in the prelims. The old record (9.07) was established by Lacey Dent of St. Paul’s Episcopal at the 2012 state meet. She also anchored the Rams’ 4x200 relay team that won the event with a Class 4A/5A record 1:42.37 time. Central-Tuscaloosa (1:42.73) and Brewbaker Tech (1:44.30) finished 2-3 and broke the old mark (1:46.54) set by Ramsay in 2016.
CHANICE SPICER, BREWBAKER TECH: Clocked 7.77 for the best pre-lim time in the Class 4A/5A 60-meter dash competition. Only 21/100ths of a second separated the top five qualifiers – setting up what could be a very competitive final Saturday.
AMARIS TYYNISMAA, MONTGOMERY CATHOLIC: The senior, one of the most celebrated distance runners in AHSAA history, added the 2019 Class 4A/5A 800 meters title to her growing list of individual state championships with a winning time of 2:20.05 in Friday’s competition. She fell three seconds shy of the 4A/5A state record (2:17.57) she set in 2015 as an eighth grader.
PRESLEY MILES, SAINT JAMES: The sophomore runner clocked 11:10.48 to win the Class 1A/3A 3,200 meters by more than 37 seconds. Miles was recently named the 2018 Alabama Gatorade Cross Country Runner of the Year. Her time was just seven seconds off the pace of the Class 1A/3A indoor state record set by Kathryn Lazarchick of UMS-Wright in 2013. Miles also won the 800-meter run with an outstanding time of 2:18.47, just short of Lazarchick’s Class 1A/3A record (2:16.37) set in 2013.

Won the Class 7A long-jump competition in one of the top leaps in recent history – winning the event with a final leap of 23 feet, 11.75 inches. The jump did not set a state indoor record (24-050, which was set by Noah Igbinoghene of Hewitt in 2017. Igbinoghene started as a freshman in the secondary for Coach Gus Malzahn’s Auburn Tigers in 2018.
SAVAIN TAYLOR, SMITHS STATION: Set a new Class 7A state indoor 800-meter record clocking 1:54.38 for the best time of all classes Friday. Hunter Ceci of Huntsville was second with a 1:55.44 time. The old record (1:54.69) was set by Hoover’s Trent Hamner in 2017.
HUNTER HARWELL, MOUNTAIN BROOK: The senior set a new Class 7A indoor state record in  the 3,200 meters finishing the race in 9:24.65. The old 7A record (9:26.88), set b was Tommy McDonough of Hoover in 2017. Smiths Station’s Silas Franklin was close behind Harwell with a 9:28.03 performance.
AARON BROOKS, OAK MOUNTAIN: Edged out sprinters Willie McCaulley of Huntsville and Seth Shelby of Hoover in the closest race of Friday’s competition to claim the top qualifying spot in the Class 7A 60-meter dash. Brooks’ time was 7.033, McCaulley had a time of 7.036 and Shelby was third at 7.038 seconds. The 7A state indoor record (6.84) was set by Central-Phenix City’s Karon Delince at the 2017 state meet.
WILL STONE, HOMEWOOD: The senior defended his 2018 championship in the 800-meter run with  winning time of 1:56.14. Teammate Logan Justice finished second crossing three seconds back at 1:56.14. Stone also won the 3,200 meters running the distance in 9:35.34.
BRANTAN BARNETT, OPELIKA: Had a sub-7 second time in the Class 6A 60-meter hurdles prelims (6.98) to earn top seed in the 6A finals. Former Opelika sprinter Nathanaiel Huggins set the 6A mark (6.85) in 2016.
NATHAN COOPER, DOTHAN: Tossed the shot 53-05.50 to beat the field in Class 6A. Zion Binion of Northridge was second with a 52-10 throw.
Had the top 4A/5A qualifying time (6.94) in the 60-meter dash.
D.J. PATRICK, ELMORE COUNTY: Won the 4A/5A triple jump competition with a winning lead of 45-07.75 – almost three feet better than the rest of the competition.
WALKER JUNKIN, WINFIELD: Cleared 14-0 to win the Class 1A/3A pole vault competition.
Clocked 1:36.08 to win the Class 1A/3A relay and missed the state 1A/3A state record (1:34.94) by less than two seconds.

2019-20 High School Volleyball Rules Changes Impact Uniforms, Prematch Protocol






2019-20 High School Volleyball Rules Changes

Impact Uniforms, Prematch Protocol

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                         Contact: Lindsey Atkinson

INDIANAPOLIS, IN (February 1, 2019) — An overhaul of uniform-related rules and an adjustment to team roster submissions were among the most notable rules changes identified for the 2019-20 high school volleyball season.

All rules changes were recommended by the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) Volleyball Rules Committee at its January 6-8 meeting in Indianapolis and subsequently approved by the NFHS Board of Directors.

“The sport of volleyball continues to be in a really good place,” said Lindsey Atkinson, NFHS director of sports and liaison to the Volleyball Rules Committee. “The rules committee focused its changes this year on improving the administration of the match by taking into account the feedback it received via the 2018 NFHS Volleyball Rules Questionnaire.”

The changes in uniform rules are a part of Rule 4-2, which reorganizes the uniform rule to improve understanding and eliminate solid-colored uniform requirements.

Rule 4-2-1, which permits teammates to wear like-colored uniform pieces, was expanded to include all uniforms and involves nine guidelines.

Rule 4-2-1a states that all uniform tops (with the exception of the libero, as noted in Rule 4-2-2) and bottoms shall be like-colored. Rule 4-2-1e permits the top and/or bottom of all uniforms to include the school’s name, nickname, logo, mascot and/or team member’s name. In doing so, a single mascot reference and/or school name may be placed on the sleeve(s), and shall not exceed either 4 inches by 4 inches or 3 inches by 5 inches.

“The rules committee was very deliberate and measured in their language choices to ensure that all currently compliant libero and team uniforms will be compliant under the new rule,” Atkinson said. “The committee believes that this new rule will, in fact, be easier to apply and require less policing by both officials and state associations.”

In Rule 4-2-2, the libero’s uniform must clearly contrast from the predominant color(s) of the team uniform top, excluding trim. The libero’s uniform top cannot be made up solely of the same predominant color(s) of the team’s uniform top, even if the like color(s) are placed differently on the uniform top. Furthermore, numbers shall meet all specifications in Rule 4-2-4, which removes the option for players to wear No. 00 to eliminate confusion surrounding the signaling of the number.

Beginning July 1, 2023, a plain, Arabic numeral of a solid, clearly contrasting color from the body of the uniform will be required. The change eliminates the use of a border to create the number contrast, therefore, allowing officials and scorers to easily identify uniforms numbers while aligning the rule with that of other rules codes.

In dealing with the submission of team rosters, sections of Rules 5-7 were modified to eliminate warmup interruptions by officials requesting rosters with 10 minutes remaining on the warmup clock. The change creates a smoother warmup process for coaches, players and officials.

Rules 5-5-1b, 5-6-1b and 7-1-1a clarified the specific duties of the second referee, official scorer and coach during the prematch setting. Before the match, the second referee shall assist the first referee by collecting each team roster during the timed prematch conference and supervise the placement of the officials’ table and team benches.

As part of Rule 5-6-1b, the official scorer shall now also receive each team’s roster from the second referee at the conclusion of the prematch conference. In Rule 7-1-1a, a coach from each team shall submit in writing to the second referee an accurate roster with names and uniform numbers of all players during the timed prematch conference. Roster changes may be made until 10 minutes remain on the pregame clock.

“The logistical change of when, and to whom, the roster shall be submitted was again the result of questionnaire feedback,” Atkinson said. “In an effort to improve the flow of the prematch requirements, the committee felt that the submission of the roster as a part of the prematch conference, with the ability to make changes until 10 minutes remaining on the clock, allowed for a more efficient process and alleviated the scorer of the responsibility to collect team rosters.”

The committee made additional changes that impact officials, including aligning rules regarding the treatment by officials of a ball striking either the cables and/or the diagonal poles used to retract ceiling-suspended net systems. This change in Rules 2-3j, 2-4-1e and 2-4 PENALTY 3 treats cables and diagonal poles as restricted play at which time officials must determine if the ball was playable. The committee’s change to Rule 5-9-2 NOTE places the line judge in a more appropriate position to watch for foot contact with the end line, as well as allowing him or her to quickly transition back into position for a view of the sideline.

The final change involved the removal of Rule 8-2-6d and adoption of new Rule 8-2-5g, which establishes that a serve is illegal, and the ball remains dead, if the server tosses the ball for serve and the ball touches any part of a backboard or its supports hanging in a vertical position over the serving area and not a service fault.

A complete listing of the volleyball rules changes will be available on the NFHS website at Click on “Activities & Sports” at the top of the home page and select “Volleyball.”

According to the 2017-18 NFHS High School Athletics Participation Survey, volleyball is the second-most popular sports for girls (trailing track and field) with 446,583 participants in 16,434 schools nationwide. In addition, there are 60,976 boys participating in the sport at 2,472 schools, and 24 states conduct state championships in boys volleyball.


This press release was written by Cody Porter, a graphic arts/communications assistant in the NFHS Publications/Communications Department.



About the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS)

The NFHS, based in Indianapolis, Indiana, is the national leadership organization for high school sports and performing arts activities. Since 1920, the NFHS has led the development of education-based interscholastic sports and performing arts activities that help students succeed in their lives. The NFHS sets direction for the future by building awareness and support, improving the participation experience, establishing consistent standards and rules for competition, and helping those who oversee high school sports and activities. The NFHS writes playing rules for 17 sports for boys and girls at the high school level. Through its 50 member state associations and the District of Columbia, the NFHS reaches more than 19,000 high schools and 11 million participants in high school activity programs, including more than 7.9 million in high school sports. As the recognized national authority on interscholastic activity programs, the NFHS conducts national meetings; sanctions interstate events; offers online publications and services for high school coaches and officials; sponsors professional organizations for high school coaches, officials, speech and debate coaches, and music adjudicators; serves as the national source for interscholastic coach training; and serves as a national information resource of interscholastic athletics and activities. For more information, visit the NFHS website at




MEDIA CONTACTS:                       Bruce Howard, 317-972-6900

                                                      Director of Publications and Communications

                                                      National Federation of State High School Associations



                                                      Chris Boone, 317-972-6900

                                                      Assistant Director of Publications and Communications

                                                      National Federation of State High School Associations


AHSAA Saddened by the Death of Wenonah Coach Emanuel Bell

    The AHSAA is saddened to learn of the passing of Wenonah High School girls’ basketball coach Emanuel “Tubb” Bell IV. He died Thursday afternoon, Jan. 31, after a long battle with cancer.
     “Our AHSAA family of member schools has lost a special person in Coach Emanuel Bell,” said AHSAA Executive Director Steve Savarese. “His love for teaching and coaching was only surpassed for his love of his players. He had an impact on all who knew him. We are all very fortunate that he chose to teach and coach at Wenonah High School.”
      Coach Bell’s team beat Parker 70-15 Wednesday night to improve to 19-8 with one regular-season game remaining. He compiled a 529-194 overall record in 25 years as the Lady Dragons’ head coach. One of the nation’s biggest ambassadors of girls’ high school educational-based basketball, his teams won five state championships: including his first in 2004 and four in a row from 2014-2017. His team lost in the semifinals last year. Bell received numerous coach-of-the-year honors and was also the recipient of the Frank House Award presented to him by the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame in 2017.

     “His legacy will live on in the hearts and soul of those he helped mold into outstanding adults. Our hearts and prayers go out to Coach Bell’s family, his team, his school and all who loved him,” Savarese added. “He fought a valiant fight and now I can only imagine that he is organizing a team and coaching in heaven tonight. Yes, I am sure with his contagious smile that he is working the crowd and hugging everyone in sight. Heaven has a new angel and we have lasting memories of Coach Bell.
   “His life of service is one we should all emulate. He will be missed by us all.”
    Funeral arrangements were not available at this time.

Hoover, Homewood Set to Defend Titles After Tune-Up at Last Chance Meet

    MONTGOMERY – AHSAA member schools tuned up for this week’s 49th AHSAA Indoor Track & Field State Championships with strong showings in last weekend’s Last Chance Invitational meet held at the Birmingham CrossPlex.
    Grabbing this week’s AHSAA Indoor Track Spotlight at the Last Chance meet were Tanner King of Class 4A Northside and Jasmine Griffin of Class 6A Homewood.
    Hoover High School’s boys, going for their third consecutive AHSAA Indoor Class 7A State Championship this weekend, won the Last Chance Classic title with 81 points Chapel Hill (NC) was second with 64. Hewitt-Trussville was fourth with 44 points and Central-Phenix City was sixth with 37. 
    Defending Class 6A state girls’ indoor champion Homewood was second to Miller Grove (GA) at the CrossPlex’s final regular-season meet of the prep season.  Miller Grove totaled 72 points, the Patriots had 58 and Hoover’s girls were third with 52. Coach Devon Hind’s Bucs will be attempting to extend their current indoor state championship meet winning streak to six state titles in a row. Hoover has won the first four 7A indoor girls’ crowns and won the 6A championship in 2014 – one year before the AHSAA moved from six classes to seven.
    The AHSAA state meet gets underway Friday at the Birmingham CrossPlex the Coaches’ meeting at 8 a.m., and competition beginning at 9 a.m. Saturday’s events get underway at 8 a.m. The NFHS Network is expanding its coverage this year from one day to both days and will have veteran announcer Jerry Young handling the broadcast duties each day.
      Approximately 3,000 student-athletes will be in the competition in four divisions. Defending state champions are: (7A) Hoover’s boys and girls; (6A) Homewood’s boys and Homewood girls; (4A/5A) St. Paul’s Episcopal girls and Guntersville’s boys.  (1A/3A) American Christian’s boys and girls. Coach Jim Tate’s Saints has moved up to Class 6A and Coach Charles Tiller’s Patriots will be competing in the 4A/5A division.   
   The field this weekend will be impressive, led by Montgomery Catholic senior distance runner Amaris Tyynismaa and Oak Mountain senior high junior high jumper Trey Allen.
    Tyynismaa, one of the state’s most accomplished runners, holds the fastest time of the season in the 1,600 meters. She clocked 5:01.84 in the Holiday Invitational in December. Sophomore Presley Miles of Saint James turned in the best 3,200 time of the regular season with a 10:52.52 time at the VA Showcase two weeks ago.  Katie Strozier of Pelham has the AHSAA’s top 800 meters time (2:14.33), winning the Last Chance Classic 6A/7A race just three seconds off the CrossPlex record. Oak Mountain senior Nicole Payne won the Last Chance 400-meter dash with a meet-record 55.03 time. Her 54.88 performance in the Ice Breaker Meet on Jan. 5 is the AHSAA’s fastest time of the year.
    Allen’s 7-0 leap in the MLK Classic is the best high-jump effort of the season across the nation. Hoover’s Kyle Smith cleared 6-06 to win the Last Chance meet competition. McGill-Toolen Catholic senior David Dolan cleared 15-03 for the state’s best pole vault performance of the season to win the Last Chance meet. Senior Will Stone of Homewood, who posted a 4:19.04 time in the 1,600 meters at the Ice Breaker meet, won last weekend with a 4:19.24. He also set Last Chance meet and CrossPlex record with a 9:15.14 in the 3,200 meters race.
    Mae Jemison senior Tyler Davis won the 60-meter dash last weekend with a 6.87 time. He was just 9/100ths of a second behind Trey Cunningham’s state and national record time set in the Last Chance meet in 2017.
    Heat sheets for the AHSAA State Championships can be found at the following link:}

    Xpress Timing, directed by Dan Passen, will provide live stats results throughout the state meet with the NFHS Network’s subscriber-based live stream available through its subscriber program. For more information, go to

Mountain Brook’s Trendon Watford Becomes AHSAA Career Rebound Leader in Hewitt Win

MONTGOMERY -- Mountain Brook High School 6-foot-9 senior Trendon Watford had 27 points and 12 rebounds as the defending Class 7A state champion Spartans (24-3) beat Hewitt-Trussville 63-39. In the process, his last rebound of the night made him the AHSAA’s all-time leading rebounder – and the outstanding forward grabbed this week’s AHSAA Basketball Spotlight.
   Watford had 1,821 rebounds following that win, which moved him past the state’s all-time career leader Richard Hendrix of Athens, who finished his career with 1,820 rebounds from 2001-05 for the Golden Eagles.  Watford added 12 in a 51-47 win over Memphis East on Saturday night to give him 1,833 on the season. He also has more than 3,400 points in a career that spanned one season (2014-15) at Shades Valley High School and four seasons at Mountain Brook (2015-16, 2016-17, 2017-18 and this season). Coach Bucky McMillan’s Spartans, ranked 8th nationally by U.S. Today, have won back-to-back Class 7A boys’ state basketball titles with Watford in the line-up.  He also was one of two AHSAA seniors named to rosters for the McDonald’s All-America All-Star Game last week. Pleasant Home senior center River Baldwin was selected for the McDonald‘s girls’ contest.
    Josh Langford of Madison Academy (2016) and Shakayla Thomas of Sylacauga (2014) are the most recent AHSAA players to play in the annual all-star game. Jack Doss served as a head coach and his J.O. Johnson assistants Troy Ragland and Preston Barber also coached in the game in 2016.
    The win over Memphis East extended Mountain Brook’s current winning streak to 10 games.
    Watford’s rebounding record edged out another outstanding rebounding performance by Coosa Christian’s India Brown for this week’s AHSAA Spotlight. She had 25 points and 28 rebounds in a 67-58 win over Jacksonville Christian. Brown had 11 offensive rebounds and 17 defensive boards to turn in the 13th best single-game rebounding effort in AHSAA girls’ basketball history.  Maida Harris of B.B. Comer had 38 in a game for Childersburg against B.B. Comer in 2000 to set the record. Brown had 31 in a win over Cleveland last season, which ties for third most overall. Her 28 versus Jacksonville Christian is the most reported since then and gives her the two highest rebounding totals reported in AHSAA girls’ play since 2014.
   In other top efforts reported this week:

Nailed the game-winning shot in the closing seconds of Tanner’s 38-36 win over West Limestone on Thursday in the Limestone County Tournament. Benford finished the game with 11 points. Caroline Bachus had 20 points for West Limestone.
MAXWELL RONE, COLUMBIA: Had 15 points, including two clutch baskets in overtime, as the Eagles downed Muscle Shoals 51-49 to claim the Class 6A, Area 15 top seed. Teammate Gervaughn Abram also sank three important free throws in the OT period to help seal the win. He finished with 11 points.
JAKE KOKOSZKA, ST. MICHAEL CATHOLIC: Scored the game-winning shot with 1.5 seconds left to give the Cardinals a 36-35 win over Bayside Academy. It was the first area win in the school’s AHSAA history.
CHANCE SPEARS, MOBILE CHRISTIAN: Had 16 points to lead the Leopards from a 15-point deficit in the 70-68 overtime win over Flomaton.

Scored 30 points in the Eagles’ 74-48 win over Pike Road. The win was the 20th for Montgomery Academy this season – the Eagles’ sixth straight year with 20 or more wins and 11th in the last 14 seasons.
RIVER BALDWIN, PLEASANT HOME: The senior center, who was recently named to participate in the 2019 McDonald’s All-American Game, had 23 points, 15 rebounds and seven blocked shots in a 157-20 win over McKenzie. One night earlier, she had 24 points, 15 rebounds and 10 blocked shots in the Eagles’ 54-25 win over Georgiana.
KEANDRIA CHILDRESS, WENONAH: Had 29 points and 10 steals in a 76-43 win over Fairfield.
SARAH ASHLEE BARKER, SPAIN PARK: Tallied 27 points as the Jaguars beat Hewitt-Trussville 75-65, had 20 in a 67-50 win over Vestavia Hills and 15 in a hard-fought 48-45 loss to Hazel Green.
KAROLINE STRIPLIN, GENEVA COUNTY: Had 19 points, 17 rebounds and 11 blocked shots in a 43-28 win over Geneva County rival Samson.
RANDREA WRIGHT, CARVER-BIRMINGHHAM: Scored 28 points as the Rams (20-8) captured the Class 6A, Area 11 regular-season title. She also had 19 points and six re bounds in a 44-27 win over Gardendale.
KATIE JONES, DECATUR HERITAGE: Scored 29 points in Decatur Heritage’s 56-48 win over Westminster Christian.
ALLISON EVANS, STANHOPE ELMORE: Led the Mustangs to a 55-29 win over Prattville with 20 points and 17 rebounds.
30 points in roughly two quarters as Priceville defeated Falkville 62-35 in the semifinals of the Morgan County Tournament on Friday. She scored 25 points in the first half.
ELSIE HARRIS, B.C. RAIN: Had 23 points in a 38-34 win over Baldwin County.
TIARRA BOGGS, WILLIAMSON: Scored 20 points and had five steals in a 52-47 win over W.S. Neal.

Scored 55 points in an 85-72 loss to Sheffield.
J.D. DAVIDSON, CALHOUN: Scored 32 points, handed out seven assists and cleared seven rebounds as the Tigers beat arch-rival Central-Hayneville 100-73.
CAMERON TUCKER, WENONAH: Had 21 points, seven rebounds and four assists in a 66-57 win over Pinson Valley, 14 points and five assists in a 57-48 win over Fairfield and added 18 points as the Dragons beat Lausanne Collegiate (TN) 55-52 in the Hotbed Classic at New Albany (MS).
DE’MARQUIESE MILES, LEE-MONTGOMERY: Had 16 points and eight assists in a 66-34 win over Ellwood Christian and had 14 points in a 57-50 win over Carver-Montgomery at the Wolverines’ gym – just the sixth loss in the arena’s nine-year history. Carver is 105-6 overall at home during that span with three losses coming at the hands of their arch-rival Generals.
KENDRICK CALHOUN, B.T. WASHINGTON: Had 14 rebounds and nine blocked shots as the Golden Eagles beat Holtville. His teammate Joseph Graham led the scoring with 16 points and also cleared 10 rebounds.
MARKEL BEE, SPANISH FORT: sank six 3-pointers en route to 22 points as the Toros downed Daphne 69-40 in a standing-room-only packed gym as the two rivals played in the Shooting 3 Change Classic to raise awareness for autism research. Daphne won the first meeting 67-64.
DREW DUNN, OAK MOUNTAIN: Had 21 points, including 6-of-8 at the foul line, as the Eagles downed Thompson 59-47 to clinch second seed in Class 7A, Area 5.
MICAH BOONE, LAMP: Totaled 19 points in the Golden Tigers’ 57-48 win over Montgomery Catholic to help expend LAMP’s current win streak to 13 games.
MARTAVIUS PAYTON, GEORGIANA: Had 25 points and 11 rebounds as the Panthers (22-4) won their 11th game in a row beating Pleasant Home 72-32. He also had 14 points and 10 rebounds in a 63-53 loss to Greenville the next night as the win streak came to an end versus the 5A Tigers.
NOAH BOLER, DECATUR HERITAGE: Had a pair of double-doubles with 21 points and 14 rebounds in a 59-53 win over Westminster Christian and 13 points and 13 re bounds in a 69-57 loss to Huntsville.