By NEMS Daily Journal

Baldwyn, Myrtle play in Grizzlies’ backyard

The Lakers visit the Memphis Grizzlies tonight at the FedEx Forum, but the main event will be played earlier in the day.

That’s if you’re a Baldwyn or Myrtle fan.

The Bearcats and Hawks play girls and boys basketball games in the downtown Memphis arena, starting at 1 p.m. with the girls tipoff. The boys game follows at 2:30.

Baldwyn coach Jason McKay says they’ve sold 350-400 tickets to Bearcats fans. Those tickets are also good for the Lakers-Grizzlies game.

“The Grizzlies told us we had to sell 150 tickets,” McKay said. “We had to call them back and get a lot more. I’m tickled to death by the positive response by our community.”

Players from the two schools will have the opportunity to attend the pregame shoot-arounds of the Lakers and Grizzlies. They’ll also attend the NBA game.

McKay wants his team to enjoy the experience, but not to forget they are playing a game.

“We told our kids to not get caught up in the Lakers and Grizzlies to the point they forget about playing the game,” he said. “We’re playing a good Myrtle team.”

This is Baldwyn’s second time in three years to play in Memphis.

“You want your kids to leave the program and know they were a part of something more than winning and losing,” McKay said. “This is an experience they can carry with them the rest of their lives.”

Bruce baseball coach receives national honor

Bruce baseball coach Josh Dowdy was selected National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) Coach of the Year for the 2011-12 school year in Mississippi.

Dowdy led the Trojans to a 23-9 season and the MHSAA Class 2A championship.

Shumpert’s recruitment easy to handle

Itawamba AHS 4-star running back Ashton Shumpert drew a lot of attention from college recruiters this season.

He lists 10 offers dominated by Southeastern Conference schools. It could have easily been a distraction for the Indians, who went 12-1, but never was even close said coach Toby Collums.

“This was my first year to deal with it. I wanted to keep an open mind,” Collums said. “I think I’ve enjoyed it probably as much as him. I look forward seeing where he chooses and supporting him wherever he goes. They’re getting a good player and a good person.”

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