News from MSU Media Relations--November 16

The lastest sports news from the MSU Media Relations Department...

Women's Basketball
STARKVILLE, Miss. - Mississippi State University head women's basketball coach Sharon Fanning has announced the signings of Mary Kathryn Govero of Clinton, Miss., Danielle Rector of Chattanooga, Tenn., and Laquitta "Shai" Wilkins of Harvest, Ala. to national-letters-of-intent. The trio will begin competing for the Lady Bulldogs during the 2007-08 school year.

A 2006 Jackson (Miss.) Clarion Ledger Dandy Dozen selection, Mt. Salus Christian School's Govero led the state in scoring as a junior averaging 36.7 points per game. Under coach Bill Maner, Govero recorded 40-point games 14 times and eclipsed 50 points twice during the 2005-06 season. She also helped the Lady Eagles reach the quarterfinals of the Academy A Tournament. She was named a Clarion Ledger all-Metro selection as a junior.

In addition to awards presented by The Clarion Ledger, Govero was named First Team all-MPSA as a junior and named District MVP as a sophomore and junior. As a sophomore, she was named to the Second Team all-MPSA and the District's Offensive Player of the Year as a freshman. Govero has also been nominated for the Wendy's High School Heisman Award.

"Mary Kathryn can drive left or right and plays extremely hard," Fanning said. "She can guard the drive, doesn't mind contact and will be the first one on the floor for the loose ball. She is a team player who studies the game and plays it one play ahead."

Govero is also a member of the Mississippi Lady Tigers AAU team.

A senior under coach Greg Brown at Tennessee Temple Academy, Rector was named an all-State selection as a junior and sophomore and was a finalist for Tennessee's Miss Basketball award last season. The 6-2 post player was also named to the district tournament's all-tournament team, region tournament Most Valuable Player and Chattanooga Times Free Press' Best of Preps list. In addition to averaging a double-double, Rector was twice named district MVP and named to the all-District, all-Region and all-City squads.

Tallying more than 2,000 career points through her junior season, Rector averaged 28.1 points per game and 12 rebounds per game during the 2005-06 season, including recording two triple-doubles and shooting 82 percent from the free-throw line. In addition to basketball, Rector was an all-District selection in volleyball and becomes the first TTHS athlete to sign with a Division I school in any sport.

"Danielle is a very versatile player who understands the game," said Fanning. "She shoots the three, drives, posts and knows how to get to the free throw line. She plays the game one play ahead and can help you get the ball down the floor to see the open person."

The daughter of Melita and Jeff Rector holds a 3.78 grade point average and is involved in various extracurricular activities.

Wilkins hails from Sparkman High School in Harvest, Ala. where she has prepped under June Seals. Wilkins ranks in the top 15 in a majority of statistical categories monitored by the Alabama High School Activities Association and the Senators rank in the top four of all team categories. The 6-2 guard was a Super all-Metro selection and Alabama Class 6A Northwest Regional Most Valuable Player as a junior. She was also named all-Region and to the all-Area Tournament team.

"Shai is a strong mobile post who can cover the court," Fanning added. "She loves contact and works hard for position on the rim, as well as rebounding position on both ends of the floor. She is a smart player, a competitor and a winner. She understands the game and the success of her high school program, as well as AAU program will help her prepare for the next level."

In addition to playing on the prep ranks, Wilkins is a member of the Southern Stars 1989 AAU team. Wilkins is a member of the National Honor Roll and a three-time recipient of the Presidential Award.

Men's Basketball
STARKVILLE, Miss. - Mississippi State men's basketball coach Rick Stansbury announced Wednesday that Ravern Johnson of Clarksdale's Coahoma County High School, Kodi Augustus from Maine Central Institute, and Elgin Bailey of Baton Rouge's Belaire High School have signed national letters of intent with the Bulldogs.

Mississippi's reigning Mr. Basketball, as accorded by The Clarion-Ledger, Johnson averaged 23.0 points and 7.1 rebounds per game a year ago as a junior in helping lead coach Isaiah Peterson's Coahoma County 2005-06 squad to a second consecutive Class 2A state championship with a school-record 35-5 overall mark and a No. 2 season-ending overall ranking. The 6-foot-6, 185-pound guard is presently rated as the nation's No. 77 recruit by

As a sophomore, Johnson earned honorable mention all-state honors after averaging 20.1 points and 9.9 rebounds per contest in helping pace the 2004-05 Red Panthers to a 32-5 record and the school's first state title.

Set to play his senior season at Maine Central Institute in Pittsfield, Maine, Johnson averaged 16.9 points, 7.8 rebounds and 2.1 blocks per game to earn All-District 20-5A First Team honors a year ago for coach James Bailey at Willowridge High School in Houston, Texas. The 6-foot-9, 220-pound power forward is currently ranked 114th nationally and seventh among Texas recruits by

A native of Baton Rouge, La., Augustus previously competed at Tara High School before moving to Texas for the 2005-06 season. He is a cousin of former LSU All-American and current WNBA standout Seimone Augustus.

Bailey, a 6-foot-8, 255-pound center, averaged 21 points and 15 rebounds per game a year ago for coach Michael Banks at Belaire High School in Baton Rouge. Despite missing half of his junior campaign due to a transfer ruling, Bailey earned 2005-06 All-District 6-4A First Team accolades and was named one of the district's best defensive players.

Having previously starred at Baton Rouge's Glen Oaks Senior High School prior to transferring to Belaire in 2005, Bailey is presently rated as the nation's No. 109 senior high school prospect by

Men's Golf
STARKVILLE, Miss. - Mississippi State men's golf coach Clay Homan announced Wednesday the signing of Adam Hossley from Madison Central High School in Madison, Miss. Hossley won the Mississippi Class 5A State Individual crown last spring.

At MCHS, Hossley was apart of three 5A State Championship squads. The Jaguars captured the 2003, 2004 and 2006 titles. He captured the 2006 individual crown after tuning in a two-day total of 139 (69.5), earning him First Team All-State accolades. For his efforts during his junior campaign, Hossley was awarded the Mississippi Pop Star Award for golf. The award is sanctioned through the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame and is awarded to the best athletes in the state for each respective sport.

"Adam is one of the top players in the state of Mississippi," said Homan. "He is an excellent student in the classroom. He will give us some depth next season and compete for playing time next season."

With the signing of Hossley, Homan has inked back-to-back Mississippi Class 5A Individual State Champions. Current MSU linkster Matt Fast (Hattiesburg, Miss.) won the 2005 edition of the state golf event.

An active member of the Mississippi Golf Association circuit, Hossley finished second at the Mississippi Junior Amateur at 2-over par after firing rounds of 73-70-75. This past summer he participated in the Mississippi State Amateur Championship at Dancing Rabbit Golf Club in Philadelphia, Miss. Hossley finished 12th in the state competition. Last April, he carded rounds of 67-66 to take home medalist honors at the Canton Invitational. As part of the festivities surrounding the 2006 Southern Farm Bureau Invitational PGA Tour event, Hossley played in the 2006 Edwin Watts MJGA Junior Pro-Am at Annandale Golf Club. He partnered with PGA Tour Pro Duffy Waldorf.

"I wanted to go to MSU during the whole process," said Hossley. "The program is getting better and the players and coaches are great."

The soon-to-be MSU golfer compiled four top-20 finishes on the American Junior Golf Association tour with his best finish coming at the 2005 Bubba Conlee event in Olive Branch, Miss.

Hossley intends to major in business at State.

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