VHS-Oak Grove rematch of 1999

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, January 29, 2002

[01/29/02]Oak Grove breezed through it’s Division 5-5A schedule and won the title. The Lady Warriors’ reward: hosting four-time state champion Vicksburg Missy Gators.

Vicksburg (15-2) travels to Oak Grove in the opening round of the state Class 5A playoffs today at 5:30 p.m. With a win, the Missy Gators will host the second round against either Biloxi or Long Beach.

“We know it’s going to be a tough game,” Oak Grove coach Clay Smith said. “Vicksburg is strong and they always have been. I feel good about our team, though.”

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The Lady Warriors (12-5-3) lost to Vicksburg in the 1999 state championship in a shootout. Then, Oak Grove was a Class 4A team.

“It won’t be easy. They are the defending 4A champions,” Vicksburg coach Kevin Manton said. “They wouldn’t be where they are if they weren’t good.”

Three players from the Lady Warriors’ team, including leading scorer Allison Roberts, were on that team in 1999.

It was Roberts’ overtime goal that gave Oak Grove a 2-1 lead before Kristin Chapman tied the game late. VHS won in a shootout.

Despite the fifth-ranked Missy Gators’ history four state championships in six years Smith said his team is not intimidated.

“We know anyone can beat anyone on a given day,” said Smith, whose team has lost only two games in four years at home. “We can’t back down from them.”

The Missy Gators are led by Brandi Parker’s 31 goals and Neely Nasif’s 15. Michelle Beatty has nine goals and 15 assists and seventh-grader Holly Head has 12 goals.

The game should be a contrast of styles as Vicksburg looks to its speed, while No. 10 Oak Grove plays a possession game.

A warm evening is forecast and Smith is hoping there is no more rain.

“Our field is soggy already,” he said.

Manton said the wet field should not have an effect on the game.

“We’ve played on wet fields before,” Manton said. “We have to understand that it’s lose and we go home.”

Vikings to play after Missy Gators

Warren Central’s boys will play the second game of the night against third-ranked Oak Grove following the Vicksburg game.

The Warriors (14-3-2) won Division 5-5A to earn the first-round home game.

The Vikings (10-9) are in the same situation as the Missy Gators in that with a win, they will host either Biloxi or Long Beach in the second round.