By Robert Carter
North Jefferson News
— It’s Monday, and we hope you have a good umbrella…
Weather: Flooding possible. The National Weather Service has issued a flash flood watch for Jefferson County (but not Blount) that runs through this afternoon. More rain is expected in the metro area, on top of the soaking we received on Sunday. We’ll actually see rain off and on throughout the day and into Tuesday, with high temperatures today in the upper 50s and lows tonight in the lower 40s.
Tornadoes rip southern Mississippi and Alabama. The storm system that brought our area rain and a little thunder was much worse closer to the Gulf Coast. A large tornado ripped through Hattiesburg, Miss., hitting the campus of Southern Miss. There were scattered injuries, but nothing life-threatening. Another tornado is believed to have hit near Grove Hill in Clarke County, Ala., damaging several structures there; injury reports are incomplete.
Grammy nod for Zac Brown Band. Chris Fryar and his buddies won the award for best country album at the 55th Grammy Awards on Sunday night. Fryar, the band’s drummer, lives in Mt. Olive. Another Grammy went to the group Little Big Town for best country duo/group performance, for their hit song “Pontoon”; singer Jimi Westbrook hails from nearby Sumiton.
Sports: On to Huntsville. A large contingent of wrestlers from six local schools will advance to the AHSAA State Wrestling Championships later this week at the Von Braun Civic Center. Pinson Valley narrowly lost the team title in the Class 5A Section 1 tournament over the weekend in Homewood, finishing five points behind winner Benjamin Russell; Mortimer Jordan was third. We’ll have the full list of those advancing to Huntsville later today at njeffersonnews.com… Prep basketball: Only two local boys basketball teams made it past the first round of post-season play Friday night. Pinson Valley beat Moody 77-61, and Mortimer Jordan routed Hayden 77-47. The Indians play at Center Point in the Area 11 championship game tonight at 7:30, right after the Indians and Eagles girls teams square off for their area finals. Jordan hosts Walker in the finals at 7… College softball: Former Mortimer Jordan star Haylie McCleney wasted no time making her mark on the top-ranked Alabama Crimson Tide team, as she went .722 (13-for-18) with nine runs, two doubles, a triple, two home runs, four RBI and five stolen bases as the Tide swept all five games in the UNI-Dome Classic tournament in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Another former Blue Devil, sophomore Danae Hays, had three hits in the final game of the tournament, including a two-run homer. Meanwhile at Auburn, yet another former Blue Devil — redshirt sophomore Morgan Estell — is doing nicely after returning from last year’s season-ending surgery. She hit .500 (7-of-14) and scored 10 runs in five games of the season-opening Plainsman Invitational tournament, which the Tigers swept. Estell was named to the pre-season all-SEC team.