Owen Wilkinson wins second consecutive girls’ singles title

Published 2:57 pm Thursday, April 27, 2023

It’s not often that a state championship feels like a foregone conclusion.

That was certainly the case this week however as Owen Wilkinson tore through the girls’ singles bracket at the State Individual Tournament en route to her second consecutive state championship.

Wilkinson dropped just three games across her four matches in the tournament, all of which came in the second set of the final against Clinton’s Tejasvi Lakshmi Uppu.

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The dominant run ended with the Oxford sophomore donning her second straight 6A girls’ singles medal after knocking off Ocean Springs’s Madalyn Smelley in straight sets last season.

While Wilkinson may not have faced much adversity between the lines, she had to battle the elements and a change of venue to secure her second title as multiple rain delays forced the tournament inside the William F. Galtney Indoor Tennis Facility on the Ole Miss campus.

“The rain delay was definitely tough for both players,” Wilkinson said. “When I started off the match indoors I was trying to stay as calm as possible but still have energy to keep going.”

She said the change of venue did not change much in her approach however as she fed off the energy from supporters in the building to claim the final three games in the second set after battling to a 3-3 draw.

“It was so fun playing on that big court. I had my whole family and a bunch of our friends there so it was just fun to get the win for the second time and doing it in front of my family and friends made it even more fun,” Wilkinson said.

The dominant sophomore said the championship was just the latest step on her journey as she works towards her dream of playing collegiate tennis.

“I want to keep winning state championships but I also want to hopefully play college tennis one day and just see how far I can go.”