Mikey Monday started swimming competitively through the YMCA of Calhoun County and recently qualified to race at the highest level Dec. 6 in Auburn. The senior qualified in the 100-meter freestyle, 50-meter freestyle and 100-meter butterfly.
“It feels better good,” Monday said. “My coaches said I probably could qualify for state, but I wasn’t really sure at first.”
Monday said he didn’t know he could qualify through the YMCA until last month at the first meet of the season.
What makes the feat even more incredible is Monday, who also plays baseball at Saks, didn’t begin swimming with the YMCA until May.
“I like that it’s different and kind of new,” he said. “I just thought it was cool.”
Monday’s coach, Brandy Sanders, said she doesn’t know of anyone else from Saks to compete in the state championships. Monday said he will spend the next two months training for the big event.
“I swim for about two-and-a-half hours four days a week,” he said. “I also run quite a bit.”
ANNISTON VS. JACKSONVILLE: Anniston has dominated its series with this week’s opponent, Jacksonville, but the Golden Eagles are coming off a big win last season at Anniston.
With that said, the 2012 win was the second time Jacksonville has defeated Anniston in the last 30 years. Anniston has a 25-6 lead in the series and set a series record with 12 straight wins during 1933-67.
COUNTY VOLLEYBALL: Although defending champion Donoho is the top seed in Saturday’s Calhoun County volleyball tournament, there’s no question who has been the most dominating county team over the last decade: Jacksonville.
Despite the Golden Eagles falling in last year’s county championship match, Jacksonville won the tournament the previous four seasons and has played in the finals in each of the past nine. Since 2005, Jacksonville has celebrated six county championships in eight seasons, which ties Donoho and Pleasant Valley for the most in such a short span of time.
Donoho won six titles during 1975-83 and Pleasant Valley did the same during 1986-94. Donoho is looking to repeat as Calhoun County champion for the first time since 1982-83. Donoho also won it back-to-back years in 1975-76.
PLAYERS OF THE WEEK: Piedmont defensive back/wide receiver Cody Daughtry shined bright enough Friday night for the Alabama High School Athletic Association and Alabama Sports Writers Association to take notice in its weekly prep honor rolls.
Daughtry intercepted a pass and recovered a fumble that sealed Piedmont’s 26-10 win over Leeds.
Daughtry was joined in dual recognition by Spring Garden’s Matt Mullinax, who rushed for 253 yards and three touchdowns in a 56-35 win against Jacksonville Christian. The ASWA also took notice of Cherokee County’s Ty Green for the second straight week, along with a trio of running backs — Spring Garden’s Kyle Reece, Jacksonville’s Dominique Thomas and Oxford’s Racean Thomas.
CLAY DEFENSE: The Clay Central defense has been consistent this season, allowing either 14 points in a game or keeping their opponents off the scoreboard. Either way, the first five games have been wins.
While the offense came around in last week’s 30-14 victory over Munford, second-year Clay Central is building a tradition of solid defense.
Since last August, Clay Central is 6-2 when allowing more than 10 points and 9-0 when holding opponents to single digits. At the same time, the Volunteers are also 15-0 when scoring 10 or more points.
Brandon Miller covers prep sports for The Star. He can be reached at 256-235-3575 or follow him on Twitter @bmiller_star.