Golf: The EMCC golf team competed Feb. 24 in a tournament at Hinds Community College – its first golf match of the season. Freshman Zak Holloway of Columbus made the cut as a member of the All-Tournament Team, made up of the six golfers with the lowest scores.
In other EMCC golf news, Coach Dale Peay has recruited four players, so far, for next year's team – including James Winter of Brandon, ranked the No. 1 player in the state by the Mississippi Junior Golf Association. Also on the roster for next year are: Will Black of Calhoun City, the No. 4-ranked golfer; Garrett Alford of Brandon, ranked in the top 15; and Trey Adams, who played on a two-time state championship team at Belmont High School.
The team, now in its first year at EMCC’s Golden Triangle campus, is looking forward to hosting a high school golf tournament at Columbus Country Club in April.
Football: New head coach Buddy Stephens is assembling his staff and keeping the recruitment push on. Stephens chose Mike Volarvich as his offensive coordinator. Volarvich comes to EMCC from Southwest Mississippi Community College, as does secondary coach Cliff Collins. William Jones, EMCC’s new defensive coordinator, worked with Stephens at Pearl River Community College – where they helped lead the Wildcats to four state championships and one national championship.
Spring training: Lion football players will start training for the 2008 season right after spring break. Meanwhile, 2007 players who graduated early and signed with four-year schools will also begin spring training: LeGarrette Blount, University of Oregon; Jare Gault, University of Tennessee at Chattanooga; Derrick Boyd, University of Central Arkansas; Dameon Baylor, University of West Alabama; and Evan Webber, University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff.
Basketball: There was good news for women's basketball this season. The EMCC Lady Lions advanced to the MACJC State Tournament, a first for the program this decade. Under the direction of coach Sharon Thompson, the women’s basketball team finished 11-13 overall and 6-6 in division play. EMCC concluded its season in the opening round of the MACJC State Tournament. The even better news is that 12 of the 14 players are freshmen.
Academics: Classes come first at EMCC and this year’s athletes are excelling academically. The softball team ranks the highest with a 3.5 cumulative grade point average. Other team GPAs include: women’s soccer, 3.4; men’s soccer, 3.1; men’s and women’s basketball, 3.0; and baseball, 3.0.