News from MSU Media Relations--May 22

The latest sports news from the MSU Media Relations Department...Softball, Men's Basketball, Soccer and Track & Field.

Softball
STARKVILLE, Miss. - Spaces still remain for Mississippi State's summer softball camps that begin June 8 and run through the summer on the MSU campus. Registration for the camps is available online by going to www.mstateathletics.com and clicking the softball and camps links.

The camp slate opens June 8-10 with a Youth Day Camp for ages 12 and under. The annual Pitching and Catching Camp will be held June 15-16, with the Hitting Camp following on June 17-18. The summer camp season concludes July 13-16 with the Elite Skills Camp.

Additional information on MSU's softball camps and printed copies of the registration form can be obtained by contacting associate head coach Annie Smith by phone at (662) 325-0572 or via e-mail at asmith@athletics.msstate.edu.

The summer softball camps will feature instruction from the Bulldog coaching staff along with current and former MSU players. Head coach Jay Miller, an NFCA Hall of Fame inductee and head coach of the United States National Team, became Mississippi State's winningest softball coach en route to leading his team to an eighth NCAA Tournament appearance.

The Youth Day Camp features three days packed with softball drills, games and fun. The camp staff will work with campers on all aspects of the game from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. each day.

The Pitching and Catching Camp, open to ages 10 and up, will work participants through a variety of drills and station work during the two-day period. The camp is designed to provide intensive instruction for both areas of the battery, and it will allow athletes to work in an individualized manner on improving their pitching and catching skills.

Also open to ages 10 and up, the Hitting Camp includes two full days of hitting skills and drills that focus on developing campers into better all-around hitters. The camp builds from the fundamentals of hitting to the advanced stages.

The final camp of the summer, the Elite Skills Camp, covers all aspects of the game, including mechanics, skills and dozens of drills. Open to ages 12 and up, the camp teaches advanced skills and offers the opportunity to scrimmage each day.


Men's Basketball
STARKVILLE, Miss. - The playing floor at Humphrey Coliseum will receive a makeover for the 2009-10 campaign, and the Mississippi State Athletic Department wants Bulldog fans to help decide the new design.

Three potential new designs for the surface at "The Hump" have been produced, all featuring different combinations of the new athletic logos and wordmarks released in recent months by the university.

Fans can cast their vote for one of the three designs by logging on to mstateathletics.com and clicking the associated button to access the voting page. Voting will be available until June 20.

STARKVILLE, Miss. - A limited number of spots remain available for this summer's basketball camps at Mississippi State, and registration has been extended to accept additional applications.

There are two different camp sessions, and both will be conducted by Bulldogs coach Rick Stansbury, along with his assistants and several players.

The first session for boys grades 5-12 is from May 31-June 3 and is for both overnighters and day campers. The second session is a day camp only for boys grades 1-6 from June 15-18.

Session I is designed for players who are becoming serious about basketball. The $285 tuition includes instruction, lodging and meals, and each camper will receive a T-shirt and camp basketball. For those who choose not to stay overnight, the cost is $245 campers receive two meals each day (lunch and dinner) and will go home each night at the conclusion of camp activity.

Session II focuses on teaching the fundamental skills and introducing basic game strategy. The $160 tuition includes instruction, daily lunch, a free T-shirt and a camp basketball. Camp begins at 8:30 a.m. and ends at 4 p.m. each day.

More information can be obtained by going online to www.mstateathletics.com and clicking the basketball and camp links or by calling 662-325-3800.


Soccer
STARKVILLE, Miss. - Applications are being accepted for Mississippi State's four summer soccer camps that begin June 7 and run through July.

State's camp slate includes a Boys and Girls Residential Camp (June 7-11), two Youth Day Camps (June 8-12 and July 27-31) and the inaugural Girls High School Team Camp (July 19-22).

Registration forms and additional information for the camps can be found online at www.mstateathletics.com or by contacting MSU assistant coach Andy Manners at amanners@athletics.msstate.edu or (662) 325-9190.

The Residential Camp, open to boys age 9-12 and girls age 9-14, costs $469 for over-night campers and $379 for commuters. Campers will be grouped according to age and soccer ability and will focus on technical and tactical skills during the day while playing games on the MSU Soccer Field each night. Starkville Soccer Association members, Mississippi State faculty and staff with a valid ID card and teams of eight or more are eligible for a discount of $50 per camper for the camp.

The pair of Youth Day Camps will be held 8 a.m.-11 a.m. each day at the Starkville Sportsplex (405 Lynn Lane). For the $99 cost, campers ages 5-11 will be treated to a full week of soccer-related drills and games that are focused on improving technical skills such as dribbling, turning, shooting, passing, goalkeeping and much more.

Bulldog head coach Neil Macdonald and his staff added a Girls High School Team Camp this summer to provide prep squads of 10 or more four days of training and technical development prior to the start of their 2009 seasons. For a cost of $349 for over-night residents and $279 for commuters, campers will work with their teams on improving in the technical and tactical areas of the game while playing competitive matches on the MSU Soccer Field each night.


Track & Field
STARKVILLE, Miss. - Mississippi State's men's track and field team moved up 16 spots in this week's USTFCCCA NCAA Division I rankings to No. 23 following its solid performance this past weekend at the SEC Outdoor Track & Field Championships at Florida.

The Lady Bulldogs, who scored a school-record 42 points in Gainesville, are No. 69.

"To be in the Top 25 as competitive as track and field is in this country is a tremendous accomplishment," MSU coach Al Schmidt said. "It tells you how tough the SEC is to finish ninth in the league and then be ranked in the Top 25."

The men are one of eight SEC teams in the Top 25, with Florida sitting atop poll at No. 1. The women placed five in the Top 20, with LSU leading the way at No. 4.

"From top to bottom, the SEC is as tough of a league as there is," Schmidt said. "I've always said the SEC championships can be more difficult than the NCAAs."

Mississippi State, which travels to Louisville, Ky., next week for the NCAA Mideast Regional Championships, also had several student-athletes ranked in their respective events.

In the 400-meter dash, junior Dwight Mullings (44.98) and senior John Bailey (45.55) are third and eighth, respectively, after posting personal-best times last weekend. In the 100-meter dash, freshman D'Angelo Cherry (10.16) is eighth, while Mullings (20.73) is 18th in the 200-meter dash.

In the 400-meter hurdles, sophomore Emanuel Mayers' time of 50.68 at the SECs put him at No. 16, while the 4x100-meter relay team of Justin Christian, Cherry, Mullings and Mayers (39.45) is eighth.

On the women's side, senior All-America standout Marrissa Harris is 10th in the heptathlon (5,579) and 11th in the 100-meter hurdles (13.18).

"I'm expecting great things at the regionals," Schmidt said. "We've proven we can compete at a high level."


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