Tupelo Christian Prep debuts its new on-campus cross country course at 4 p.m. Saturday with a practice meet.
The 1.2-mile loop "carved out of the wilderness" by parents and volunteers, says TCPS coach Lynn Holland, is on its way to becoming one of the state's best.
"It's basically a big loop, finishing in front of the home stands on the football field," he said. "There will be some variations on the finish for the girls (4K) and boys (5K).
"It's a challenging course, one with a lot of character. Over time, when we get some grass growing, it will be as good as any course in the state."
The Eagles' boys team finished fifth overall last season in Class 1A at the MHSAA State Championships in Clinton. Four of the team's top runners return, including junior Zach Pitts, who finished 13th overall to make the all-state team.
He's joined by juniors Kevin McCully, Evan Talton and Kyle Gray. All four runners have been with the programs since its inception in 2009.
"Our goal is to move up every year," Holland said. "We ought be be able to finish in the top five again."
On the girls side, senior Cassidy Blaylock, returns, along with sophomore Hannah Lee and freshman Alli Maloney.
THS Volleyfest scheduled for Saturday at high school
Tupelo High School is hosting its annual Volleyfest this Saturday, starting at 8 a.m. at the THS gymnasium.
The day-long tournament features 15 teams competing in pool play. The top two teams in each of the three pools will play in the quarterfinals at 5:45 p.m. The semifinals are scheduled for 6:45, followed by the championship at 8.
All matches will feature two games with the tiebreaker going to the team with the most points. If an extended tiebreaker is needed, it would be a 10-point third game.
The teams entered are: (Gold Pool) Caledonia, Corinth, Madison St. Joseph, DeSoto Central, Columbus; (Blue Pool) Tupelo, Ripley, Northwest Rankin, Starkville, Aberdeen; (White Pool) Pontotoc, Oxford, Lake Cormorant and Amory.
The host Lady Wave has a 12-0 overall record after Thursday's division win against Columbus.
Robertson's softball tourney Saturday in New Albany
The 13th annual Robertson's Softball Challenge - which features defending state slow-pitch champions Grenada (6A), New Hope (5A) and Clarkdale (3A) - is scheduled for Saturday at the New Albany Sportsplex.
The remainder of the teams entered are: Alcorn Central, Belmont, Booneville, Columbus, Corinth, East Union, East Webster, Eupora, IAHS, Mooreville, Myrtle, New Albany, Nettleton, Pine Grove, Smithville, Tishomingo County and West Union.
The 26-scheduled games will be played on three fields, starting at 9 a.m.