BLOG — It came down to the wire, but the Oxford Lady Chargers came out of Friday’s MHSAA Class 5A state track meet at Pearl High School with another trophy to take back home.Oxford finished with 96 points to defeat Pearl by 15 points and capture a third straight title, and a third state championship for the school in a matter of three days. Led by individual first-place finishes from Erika Sisk in the triple and long jumps and a first-place finish from Mollie Beth Ott in the pole vault, as well as a first-place finish from the 4×400 meter relay team to end the meet, Oxford’s balance was able to overcome a few mishaps that happened during the meet.
“It feels good, we’re just blessed,” Sisk said after helping lead the Lady Chargers mile relay that secured the victory for the team. “Words can’t explain how good this feels.”
Sisk, who finished first in the triple jump with an amazing leap of 40 feet, 2 inches, was 2.25 inches off the overall record in the event set by former Ole Miss standout Brittany Reese. Ott then set a new class record in the pole vault with a mark of 10-0, a record that was previously held by her sister and former teammate Ann Crabtree.
Ott’s victory in the pole vault gave the Lady Chargers some breathing room over the Lady Pirates, who were only three points (72-69) behind heading into the final two events of the meet.
Ott said she knew how big her win was because she saw teammate Kristen Dickerson fall in the 100 meter hurdles and not able to record a point. She also knew that the 4×100 relay team fell during an exchange and finished last which resulted in only one point. She then got a huge hint how big her points were going to be when half the team showed up to watch her finish pole vault.
“I knew that was a big hurt when Kristen fell. I was vaulting during the 4×100 and saw Mary Helen (Rychlak) fall. After that, half the team came up to the fence to watch me vault. They wouldn’t tell me what was going on. They weren’t going to tell me that if me and Sally didn’t place first or get up with the Pearl girls that they were going to take the lead on us again,” Ott said. “They were sitting there and pushing me on. I had a feeling that me placing first was very important. I just tried and tried and finally I did it.”
“We got Coach (Jamie) Perkins, we’ve got Coach (Scott) Kendricks, they’ve been such a big help to us. We have a great group of girls. We all push ourselves so hard. Our school has never had a three-peat in track, boys or girls, so this was our first one,” Ott added. “We were going into it know that. Our whole senior class wanted to go out with a bang. We wanted everybody to step it up in their final game. We weren’t going to slack off in our sports. We wanted our senior year to be memorable and show the junior class coming up what they can do.”
For more on Lady Chargers’ win, as well as other information involving Oxford’s boys at Friday’s meet, see Monday’s Sports section. (May 12, 2012)