NE Jones math league

Members of the Northeast Jones High School’s Bobcat Math League team are, seated from left, are Lexi Berlin, Collin Williams, Larry Thomas and Madison Hancock; standing are coach Casey Stroo, Rachael Wade, Brooklyn Beech, Teresa Abad, Alandra Abad, Kinjal Patel and Varian Fortunak. (Photo by JC Media Relations)

Northeast Jones reaches semis


After five weeks of securing the first-place ranking going into the Jones College Bobcat Math League championship finals, Presbyterian Christian High School’s team managed to fend off second-seeded Petal to become the 2019 Jones College Bobcat Math League champions. 

In addition to a trophy, coach’s plaque and player medallions, the coach was awarded a $1,350 cash prize. The team members will split $1,500 and the high school will receive $250 for the victory.

PCS coach Melissa Brown's teams hold the record for the most championship wins and runner-up finishes in the league’s history with three championships in 2019, 2014 and 2013, and two, second-place finishes in 2018 and 2012. 

“Last year was tough because both teams knew the answer and Oak Grove just beat us to the buzzer. I think most of the credit goes to the students for their work ethic and their desire to learn new things, but credit also goes to the great math and science teachers we have here at PCS,” said Brown.

Every year, new teams join the league and some dropout. This year, the Petal Panthers proved they were contenders despite their lack of experience in the League. 

“It was so fun as a coach to watch these students excel in this competition. Many of them do not get a platform to showcase their academic abilities and for them to have an opportunity to do so is really amazing,” said Petal co-coach Melissa Bonner.

Both Petal and Presbyterian Christian were powerhouses during the regular season, as the only undefeated teams, division leaders and the highest cumulative season points with 339 and 354, respectively. However, the PCS Bobcats may have the advantage in the final rounds of the championship finals with experience on their side.

In the double-elimination tournament, experience seemed to give the PCS Bobcat team an advantage as they slipped past Quitman in their first round, 24-15. In the next round, the third-seeded Northeast Jones Tigers beat the Panthers, 22-10, sending Petal to the losers’ bracket. Petal had a chance to rest up before facing the fourth-seeded Sacred Heart. 

In the semifinals, Northeast Jones fell to Petal, 19-0. 

In the finals, Petal was only able to get a few points from PCS as the Bobcats ran away with the final match, 45-12. 

Lexi Berlin

Lexi Berlin

Individually, the Bobcats had three members of the All-League Team with Grayson Nocera, Matthew Rester and Jennifer Jian, who also earned the Overall Most Outstanding Player. Jian received a laptop from Howard Industries for having the highest average of accurate answers during the regular season. Also, on the All-League Team were Petal’s Wyatt Carter, Northeast Jones’ Lexi Berlin and Oak Grove’s William Mitchell.

Additionally, each of the 13 teams’ Most Outstanding players who competed during the five-week regular season of the Jones College Bobcat Math League were recognized during the finals. The League’s Most Outstanding Player from each participating team were: Columbia Academy-Ben Mitchell; Northeast Jones-Lexi Berlin; Oak Grove-William Mitchell; Perry Central Ale’Jah Bolton; Petal-Wyatt Carter; Presbyterian Christian-Jennifer Jian; Quitman-Logan Kelly; Raleigh-Emma Jones; Raymond-Joshua McGee and Shaun Williams; Sacred Heart-Javier Parada and Abigail Wiest; South Jones-Shelby Grunig; Wayne Academy-Parker Odom and Jennifer Shirley; Wayne County-Jared Powe and West Jones-Lindsey Cole.

Sponsors for this year’s competition include Chisholm Foundation, Howard Computers and Corner Market. 

For more information about the Bobcat Math League contact Dr. Jessica Bunch at 601-477-5422 or email at

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