Dale’s Sideline Report

Posted on: March 04,2019

The Mississippi State Lady Bulldogs won their second straight SEC title, 68-64, over their nemesis from the East in South Carolina. The Lady Bulldogs (15-1, 27-2) won for their first time in Columbia, South Carolina, since the 2010 season. The Lady Gamecocks had no answer for States’ 6-foot-7 Teaira McGowan who dominated the boards. 

The SEC men will complete their regular season this week. LSU and Tennessee are tied at 14-2 at the top of the standings. LSU, who has the tie breaker with Tennessee, will travel to Florida and host Vanderbilt while Tennessee will host Mississippi State and travel to Auburn this week. Kentucky, who is in third place at 13-3, travels to Ole Miss this week. Ole Miss and MSU are tied with Auburn, South Carolina and Florida as each team has 9-7 SEC marks entering the final week of play. With the top three seeds set, the fourth seed will come from these five teams. The top four seeds will have double byes in the tournament. 

Ole Miss lost two nail biters this week, one at home versus Tennessee and then one in the last second at Arkansas. The Rebels host UK and travel to Missouri this week. The MSU Bulldogs’ five-game winning streak ended at Auburn this past Saturday, but earlier in the week nailed  Missouri in Starkville. USM fell to Western Kentucky to drop to 17-11 overall. The Eagles are tied for fourth place at 9-7 in the conference standings. They will travel to first place Old Dominion and then host third place UTSA on Saturday at 2 p.m. to finish up the regular season. The conference tournament is in Frisco, Texas, at the Star the following week. The Lady Eagles (9-6, 17-11) will host Charlotte in their final regular season game. 

Mississippi State finished its stay at the Frisco Classic with a 2-0 record, beating Sam Houston State to open the event and then toppled No. 3 Texas Tech. For the season, State owns a 10-1 record, its best start since beginning the 2015 campaign 13-0. As a team, Mississippi State is hitting .291 and averaging 8.1 runs per game. On the mound, MSU owns a 1.53 ERA. Ole Miss swept Long Beach State to improve to 8-2 overall over the weekend. Thomas Dillard who is hitting .425 with six home runs and 18 RBIs leads the Rebels. USM has lost five straight as the Eagles have fallen to 4-5 overall. The Golden Eagles pitching staff has a decent 3.70 ERA, but the team has a .246 batting average. Delta State’s (14-2) team batting average is .301, and the pitching staff had an ERA of only 0.90 before their weekend series with Shorter (GA). 

Former Delta State great and Mississippi Sports Hall of Famer Jack Gregory (74) died this week in Okolona. Gregory, a second generation NFL football player, played for the Cleveland Browns from 1967-71 and then with the New York Giants from 1972-1979 before playing his final year in Cleveland.  The four-time Pro Bowler played in the first “Monday Night Football Game” when the Browns defeated Joe Namath and the New York Jets.  

Odds & Ends

Ole Miss wide receiver D.K. Metcalf and Mississippi State defensive lineman Montez Sweat turned heads at the National Football League Combine in Indianapolis this week. Metcalf, at 6-foot-3 and 228 pounds, ran a 4.33 40-yard dash. Sweat (6-foot-6, 260 pounds), defensive lineman, set a DL combine record with a 4.41 40-yard run.

The Jones College Women won their third straight JUCO State title while the East Mississippi Lions won the school’s first state men’s basketball title this past week. The MHSAA state basketball tournament begins this week in Jackson at the Mississippi Coliseum. 
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