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MHSAA announces 2019-21 regions for fall sports

Last week the Mississippi High School Activities Association (MHSAA) announced enrollment numbers from the Mississippi Department of Education.

High Schools across the state knew which of the six classifications they would play in during the 2019-21 athletic years, but on Wednesday they also know which region they will call home.

The MHSAA released the new region alignments for all fall sports including football, basketball, volleyball and soccer. Volleyball saw a complete makeover with the elimination of Classes II and III and reverting back to the traditional Class 4, 5 and 6A divisions.

Oxford, Lafayette and Water Valley all stayed in familiar regions but there are some fresh faces joining them.

Football

With the addition of Olive Branch and Lewisburg into Region 1-6A the question was which school along Highway 6 that would get moved to 2-6A. Oxford and Tupelo made the cut while South Panola joined 2-6A and will be frequenting Interstate-55 on a regular basis the next two years.

Joining Oxford and Tupelo in 1-6A is DeSoto Central, Hernando, Horn Lake, Lewisburg, Olive Branch and Southaven.

Region 1-5A also received a slight change. Lafayette remains along with Center Hill, Grenada, Lake Cormorant, Saltillo and West Point. New Hope is returning to 5A while Columbus dropped from 6A.

Water Valley saw the departure of M.S. Palmer and Coahoma AHS from 2-3A and welcome new Class 3A members Byhalia and Senatobia to the region. North Panola, Holly Springs and Independence also remained in the 2-3A.

Basketball

There were major changes to the basketball regions as well after the reclassification.

Leaving 2-6A is Tupelo, who moved up to 1-6A and South Panola, who dropped to 3-6A. Joining Oxford is Hernando, Horn Lake and Southaven.

With Lafayette in 1-5A the next two years are Center Hill, Lake Cormorant and Saltillo. The Tigers are the only team who are currently in Lafayette’s division. West Point and Grenada will move to 2-6A starting next year.

Water Valley will welcome Byhalia and Senatobia into their basketball region as well. Joining them are Holly Springs, Independence and North Panola.

Volleyball

The sport with the biggest change to their landscape was volleyball. With the elmination of Class II and III, schools will be playing at their classification level and not be mixed with schools a step up.

The change means only two teams from regions will qualify for the state playoffs each year.

Oxford stays in 2-6A but will have Hernando, Horn Lake and Southaven to contend with. The Chargers lose Tupelo, Columbus and South Panola.

Lafayette will be in the newly formed Region 2-5A with Center Hill and Lake Cormorant.

Water Valley joins Byhalia, M.S. Palmer, North Panola, North Side and Senatobia in Class I-Region 3.

Soccer

For Oxford and Lafayette it will be a slight change in the landscape in their respective regions.

The Chargers will be a part of 2-6A along with Hernando, Horn Lake and Southaven. They lose South Panola, Columbus and Tupelo.

Lafayette and Saltillo will stay in the same region at 2-5A along with Center Hill and Lake Cormorant.