PREP NOTEBOOK: New Smithville book focuses on football

By Gene Phelps

Daily Journal

Tony Summerford probably knows more about Smithville High School’s football program than anybody.

“He’s like a memory book. You can ask him anything on Smithville football,” said his son, Todd.

Summerford has published a 180-page record book on a 50-year (1963-2012) history of Smithville football that is packed with names, statistics and a playbook-full of interesting facts on the Seminoles’ 100-yard exploits. He has even listed the names of the cheerleaders and band members from many of the seasons. He also lists the names of all 50 homecoming queens.

“It’s nuts … there’s no telling how many hours he has put in on this book,” Todd Summerford said.

Tony Summerford gathered his information from the 30-year Smithville football history book published as a booster club fundraiser by the Lions Club, newspaper accounts, team statistics sheets and from watching game film.

“I just love doing it,” said Summerford, who has been legally blind since a hunting accident in 1979. “I love high school football.”

The book goes on sale today and can be purchased today (4-6 p.m.) and Saturday (11 a.m.- 1 p.m.) at Mel’s Diner in Smithville.

All proceeds from the book, which is $25, go to the youth program at Smithville Baptist Church.

For more information, contact Tony Summerford at 315-8733 or Todd Summerford at 315-2442.

Belmont volleyball making its own noise

Belmont girls basketball usually grabs the headlines, but the Lady Cardinals’ volleyball team is making its share of noise on the court.

Try 43 wins in two seasons.

The Lady Cardinals, who lost Tuesday to Lafayette in the opening round of the state playoffs, finished their second season with a 20-7 record. Last season, the team produced a 23-8 record playing as an independent.

“It was a good year for us,” second-year coach Reid Gann said. “We won our division tournament, had a second 20-win season.

“This is something we can build on. We should be strong again next season.”

Ripley, Lafayette play second round Saturday

The MHSAA Class I volleyball playoffs continue Saturday with second-round matches featuring Senatobia at Ripley and Lafayette at H.W. Byers.

What’s amazing about Ripley (17-14) is that the Lady Tigers lost nine of their first 10 matches to open the season.

“Something clicked and we started playing as a team,” Ripley senior middle blocker Meg Lambert told the Journal earlier this season.

Ripley lost twice to Senatobia early in the regular season by 3-1 scores.

Lafayette defeated H.W. Byers 3-0 Oct. 1 in their lone meeting.