2021 Regular Session
By: Senator(s) Sparks
A RESOLUTION COMMENDING AND CONGRATULATING THE NEW SITE "LADY ROYALS" GIRLS BASKETBALL TEAM AND COACH BYRON SPARKS FOR WINNING THE 2021 MHSAA CLASS 2A STATE CHAMPIONSHIP.
WHEREAS, New Site is an unincorporated community in the northeast corner of Mississippi. In the last census, it was home to 899 people, all of whom are passionate about basketball. On March 5, 2021, at the Mississippi Coliseum, more than a three-hour drive from New Site, at least that many red-shirted New Site fans cheered their Lady Royals to a thrilling 55-50 victory over Calhoun City for the Mississippi High School Activities Association (MHSAA) State Class 2A Championship; and
WHEREAS, the New Site girls scrapped and shot their way past an outstanding Calhoun City team that had entered the championship match with a 25-1 record. This was terrific basketball, two well-coached teams, played with precision and incredibly hard. New Site, 33-2, prevailed; and
WHEREAS, the Royals made 7 of 16 three-point shots, often penetrating the lane and then dishing the ball out to an open shooter. Hannah Campbell, a senior and a four-year starter, made three of four treys, scored 19 points and pulled down six rebounds to win MVP honors. This was after she scored 31 to lead the Royals past Newton in the semifinals. Campbell had plenty of help. Ivy Loden, listed at 5-foot-4 inches but seeming shorter, scored 15 points and drove the lane for big bucket after big bucket in the fourth quarter. When Campbell missed a free throw late with New Site leading by only two, Loden rebounded, was fouled and made two free throws to make it a four-point game with only 30 seconds remaining. Junior Lily Whitley, the only non-senior in the lineup and the tallest Royal at 5-foot-10 inches, scored eight points and pulled down 13 rebounds; and
WHEREAS, Prentiss County is a rich piece of Mississippi basketball history. New Site Coach Byron Sparks has been at the school for 19 years, long enough to know, "It's a blessing to coach at a place where the people care so much about basketball." New Site fans nearly filled up one side of the Mississippi Coliseum; and
WHEREAS, the 2021 New Site "Lady Royals" Basketball Championship Team Roster: Skyler Lindsey, F; Aden Hooker, G; Hannah Campbell, G; Gracie Yates, G; Ivy Loden, G; Ashlee Mathis, G; Lindsey Dickerson, G; Anna Slack, G; Saydee Taylor, F; Maddie Johnson, G; Allie Hutchens, F; Lily Whitley, F; and Emma Johnson, G; and Head Coach Byron Sparks; and
WHEREAS, it is with great pride that we recognize this group of student athletes who have brought honor to their school, their county where basketball is a way of life, and to the State of Mississippi:
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE SENATE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI, That we do hereby commend and congratulate the New Site "Lady Royals" Girls Basketball Team and Coach Byron Sparks for winning the 2021 MHSAA Class 2A State Championship and extend our best wishes to the team, coaches, parents and sponsors for future success.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, That this resolution be presented to Coach Byron Sparks and New Site Principal Ronald Clark, forwarded to the Prentiss County School Board and made available to the Capitol Press Corps.