Oxford senior becomes first student in school history to commit to D-I equestrian team

Published 3:54 pm Wednesday, February 2, 2022

Oxford High School hosted their annual signing day event on Wednesday, celebrating seven student-athletes who will move on to play collegiate sports.

Among the signees is senior Avery Langley, who committed to Oklahoma State University to compete in Western Horsemanship.

Langley says her first sport was volleyball, but she fully committed herself to equestrianism after competing in national events and realizing the potential she had in the sport.

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“I played volleyball first, for a long time. I played on the high school team for a little bit and then quickly realized that I could do a lot more with horses, and even go D-I with it, so I decided to push myself really, really hard,” Langley said. “We would take trips to Oklahoma every weekend and I lived down there during the summers.”

Langley is an animal lover, and says working with horses provides her a special opportunity to pursue two passions at once.

“I kind of developed a love for horses just from working [with them],” Langley said. “I’ve always had a love for animals, you can ask any of my friends. I’m obsessed with animals, so it was the perfect sport for me.”

She gets her love of horseback riding from her mother, who competed in equestrian events as a child growing up in Oklahoma. The family keeps in close contact with their relatives in the Sooner state, and even employ the same trainer her mother had as child.

Langley says she knew she had a chance to compete at the collegiate level after winning the All-Around competition at the AQHA Youth World Championships Show.

“One of my biggest accomplishments was getting the All-Around at the Youth World [Championships],” she said. “When I did that I was like ‘okay yes, I can compete with the big dogs.’ All these girls have been doing it since they were babies, they were born into it, and I started very late. So I had to work ten times harder.”

Langley said the proximity to her family was a major factor in her decision to choose Oklahoma State, a school the family already has deep ties to.

“All my family lives there. Both my grandparents were alumni there and were professors. I already spent a lot of time there, so it just kind of naturally brought me over there,” she said.

Langley already has three youth world championship medals under her belt along with numerous other honors, and now looks to add to her trophy case with NCAA Division I titles.