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Oxford, Water Valley change regions amid new MHSAA reclassification numbers

The Mississippi High School Activities Association revealed the reclassification numbers for 2021 through 2023 on Thursday.

Lafayette, Oxford and Water Valley will remain in their respective classifications, but their region opponents for the next two seasons will look a little different. Enrollment numbers for the 2020-21 school year are used by MHSAA to determine the new classification alignments.

Oxford High School remain firmly in Class 6A as the 21st largest high school in the state with 1,247 students enrolled this year, gaining 45 since the last reclassification in 2018. Tupelo is once again the largest high school in the state with 1,907 students enrolled.

There are still 32 teams in Class 6A, but they have a few new members with Center Hill and Grenada moving up from Class 5A. With the addition of two new north Mississippi teams to 6A, and Pascagoula joining from south Mississippi, there was some shifting around among the four regions.

Greenville, George County and West Harrison all dropped out of 6A.

Starting next August, Oxford will be competing in Region 2-6A after playing in 1-6A since joining Class 6A in 2017. The Chargers will join Tupelo, who also shifted down from 1-6A, Clinton, Madison Central, Germantown, Starkville, Grenada and Murrah.

In basketball and soccer, Oxford will be part of Region 1-6A with Grenada, Starkville and Tupelo. The Chargers have the same region members in volleyball, but in 3-6A.

Lafayette remained in Class 5A with 818 students enrolled, increasing by 13 students since 2018. They are the 23rd largest high school in 5A and the 55th largest in Mississippi.

With the addition of Greenville to 5A and the loss of Center Hill and Grenada, Region 1-5A saw a little bit of a makeover for the next two years.

Wingfield was the lone 5A team to drop down to Class 4A, with Vancleave and Florence moving up from 4A to 5A.

The Commodores remain in Region 1-5A, but welcome new members Cleveland Central and Greenville along with Columbus, Lake Cormorant, New Hope and Saltillo.

Lafayette will compete in Region 2-5A for basketball along with Cleveland Central, Greenville and Lake Cormorant. The Commodores will be in Region 1-5A for volleyball and soccer with Lake Cormorant and Saltillo.

Water Valley continues to stay in Class 3A despite enrollment numbers decreasing for a second straight time. The high school’s enrollment number shrank by eight students to 278 since 2018, making Water Valley the second-smallest school in 3A, just above Perry Central High School and its 276 students. The top Class 2A school is Coahoma County Junior and Senior High School, with 274 students.

The Blue Devils will find themselves in unfamiliar territory, joining Alcorn Central, Booneville, Kossuth and Mantatchie in Region 1-3A for both football and basketball. In volleyball, Water Valley joins Byhalia, Holly Springs, North Panola and Rosa Fort.

Rosa Fort and St. Stanislaus dropped from 4A to 3A with Belmont, Choctaw County, Kemper County and Velma Jackson dropping down from 3A to 2A. Columbia and Houston joined Senatobia in moving up to 4A.

The new baseball and softball regions were not announced on Thursday.