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Coaches, alumni celebrate best of Delta State

Delta State alumni of all ages met Tuesday night at the LincolnCounty Multipurpose Facility to celebrate the university and itsathletics. Several coaches from local high school were invited asspecial guests of the Delta State South Central MississippiChapter.

Several members of the Delta State coaching staff made the tripand spoke briefly about their respective sports. They alsoparticipated in Tuesday afternoon’s alumni golf tournament at theBrookhaven Country Club.

Delta State athletic director Brad Teague, who was born inBrookhaven, introduced each coach. Teague also announced that themen’s athletics at Delta State had won the All-Sports Trophy in theGulf South Conference for the first time in five years.

Jim Allen, the head men and women’s soccer coach, spoke on thegrowth of both programs and how they expect to be better this year.The 36-member men’s squad will play 19 games and the 25-memberwomen’s team will play 20 games.

“It’s going to be a lot of fun,” said Allen. “It’s a growingsport.”

Doug Pinkerton, the women’s cross country team coach, spoke nextabout his 9-girl squad and the various meets they made.

“We had a good year,” stated Pinkerton. “I am excited about thisyear.”

Women’s head softball coach David Kuhn spoke about his squad andthe growth of fastpitch softball. His Lady Statesmen were 41-26last year and won their division.

Steve Rives, men’s head basketball coach, said he was pleased tohave won the alumni golf tournament before turning his attention tobasketball.

“We have six kids coming back,” said Rives. “We got the pointguard and the shooter we needed. It’s been great coming back toCo-Lin.”

Rives said he enjoys the relationship with Co-Lin. He spokehighly of Jeremy Richardson who played two years for the Wolfpackbecoming to Delta State.

Mike Kershaw, quarterbacks coach, spoke about this year’sfootball team in place of head coach Rick Rhoades. “It’s going tobe a very exciting year for us. We have a quarterback (ScottEyster) that can throw the ball. He’s the best in the state. Hemakes me look great.”

Kershaw acknowledged how talented this area was for football andhow happy they were to sign Franklin County’s Jasper O’Quinn.

“O’Quinn is one of the greatest athletes to come out this area,”added Kershaw. He added that O’Quinn is expected to start thisfall.

A special mention was also made of the successful Statesmenbaseball program.

Vicki Firoanelli wrapped up the evening with a slide showhighlighting the individuals and facilities on campus.

A special thanks was extended to outgoing chapter president DougSullivan for his dedication to Delta State.

“I enjoyed it,” said Sullivan. “It was fun working with goodDelta State Alumni.”

Incoming president Bradley Smith presented Sullivan with apersonally-signed Dave “Boo” Ferris baseball colleague as andistinguished alumnus.

Also receiving a distinguished alumni honor plaque was Sam C.Mims V of McComb. Mims is a Republican from the South Mississippidistrict.

Teague thanked Sullivan for his efforts at getting Delta Statesports carried on the radio stations. They have several towns andcities in the state that now carry Statesmen sports because ofSullivan’s efforts. They are looking at adding more this year.

New alumni chapter officers for the year are Smith as president,Dr. Bob Watson as vice president and Ray Ishee assecretary/treasurer.