A veteran and a newcomer were the winners in the second round of preliminary competitions at the annual Miss Mississippi Pageant Thursday night.
Miss Amory Molly May and Miss Historic Crossroads Asya Branch joined Wednesday night's preliminary winners in a lineup of 44 women who head into the final preliminaries Friday. A winner is to be crowned Saturday. May, who is from Houston, won a $500 scholarship for her vocal performance of "House of the Rising Sun."
May, who is a second year competitor, and named as one of the top ten in the 2015 Miss Mississippi Pageant, was crowned Miss Mississippi's Outstanding Teen in 2012.
Branch won a $400 scholarship for winning the swimsuit preliminary and gave her boxer/German shepherd mix dog credit for help her keep fit.
"I get up at 7 a.m. and walk my dog. It is wonderful exercise to get your day going," Branch said.
In addition to walking her dog, the 17-year-old from Bonneville said she does try to eat healthy, and she enjoys exercising.