News from MSU Media Relations--November 25

The latest sports news from the MSU Media Relations Department...Men's Basketball, Cross Country, Women's Basketball and Football.

Men's Basketball
OLEAN, N.Y. - After opening the season with four victories at Humphrey Coliseum, Mississippi State has its first road test on Tuesday at St. Bonaventure.

The 6 p.m. game marks the first meeting between the two schools.

Last year, MSU was 7-4 in road games, 5-3 in SEC play.

After Tuesday, the Bulldogs travel to Newark, N.J., to face Washington State in the semifinals of the Legends Classic at 4:30 p.m. On Saturday, MSU will play either Texas Tech or Pittsburgh. Tip off will at 4:30 pr 6 p.m. Both games will be televised by HDNet.

STARKVILLE, Miss. - Last week, junior forward Jarvis Varnado became Mississippi State's all-time leading shot blocker. On Monday, he was named the SEC Player of the Week.

In three games, he averaged 10.7 points, 13.7 rebounds and 8 blocks. He enters Tuesday's showdown at St. Bonaventure with a nation-best 31 blocks on the year and 255 for his career.

The Brownsville, Tenn., native is the first MSU player to receive the honor since last year when Charles Rhodes was tabbed player of the week on March 3.

Cross Country
Terre Haute, Ind. - Mississippi State senior Robert Scribner competed in the NCAA Cross Country Championships Monday afternoon in Terre Haute, Ind., and became only the second runner in MSU history to compete at the cross country championships.

He clocked a time of 31:20.8 and finished in 152nd place.

Oregon senior Rupp Galen took home the individual national championship, finishing the men's 10K in 29: 03.2, while Liberty sophomore Samuel Chelanga and Iona senior Andrew Ledwith came in second and third place overall respectively.

In the team competition, Oregon took home the national crown with a score of 93 points, with three of their runners finishing individually in the top 10. Second place went to Iona while third place went to Stanford. Rounding out the top five teams were Wisconsin in forth and SEC foe Auburn took home fifth place.

Scribner will join the Bulldog track and field team in preparations for the 2009 outdoor season which begins in March.

Women's Basketball
STARKVILLE, Miss. - Fresh off a 22-point win over Northwestern State on Sunday, the Mississippi State women's basketball team will return to action Tuesday night, hosting Mississippi Valley State (0-1). Tip off is set for 7 p.m. at the Humphrey Coliseum.

The Lady Bulldogs (2-0) have started fast in their first two games, defeating Arkansas-Pine Bluff and Northwestern State by an average of 33 points. The Lady Bulldogs are led in scoring by junior Armelie Lumanu who has averaged 22 points in the first two games, which is currently best in the Southeastern Conference. Junior Chanel Mokango has averaged 15 points while Alexis Rack is pouring in 12 points a contest. Sophomore Mary Kathryn Govero is also averaging double-digit points with 10.5 a game.

Currently, State tops the SEC rankings in scoring offense (96.5 avg./g), scoring margin (+33.0), field goal percentage (.512), assists (22.0 avg./g) and block shots (12.0 avg./g).

Mississippi Valley State, a member of the Southwestern Athletic Conference, enters Tuesday's matchup having dropped their season opener at Georgia Tech. Led by eighth-year head coach Nathaniel Kilbert, the Delta Devilettes return two starters from last year's squad. In the opener, MVSU was led in scoring by freshman Kanesha Smith with 10 and junior Ashley Brown who had nine points.

In the all-time series, Mississippi State holds a 10-2 advantage over MVSU. The Lady Bulldogs have won nine straight in the series dating back to 1980. Last season in Starkville, MSU scored a season-best 104 points in a 59-point win over the Devilettes.

Following Tuesday night's game, Mississippi State will prepare for its first road game of the season which will come at 2 p.m. Friday at Louisiana-Lafayette.

STARKVILLE, Miss. - Mississippi State running back Anthony Dixon was named Southeastern Conference Offensive Player of the Week, the SEC office announced on Monday.

Dixon, a 6-1, 238-pounder rushed for a career-best 179 yards on 23 carries in Mississippi State's win against Arkansas on Saturday. The junior also pulled in five receptions for 32 yards and scored touchdowns on a pair of those receptions. Dixon also had a 63-yard touchdown rush late in the third quarter.

The Jackson, Miss., native eclipsed the 100-yard rushing mark for the ninth time in his career and his 34 touchdowns scored is a MSU school record.

Mississippi State closes out its 2008 season on Friday with a trip to Vaught-Hemingway Stadium for the annual Battle for the Golden Egg against cross-state rival Ole Miss. Kickoff for the game is set for 11:30 a.m., and the game will be televised by Raycom Sports.

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