Natchez track off to LSU meet

Published 12:00 am Monday, January 17, 2005

NATCHEZ &045; At the LSU High School Indoor Classic, Natchez will have its first indoors meet of the year and its first chance to shine.

The Bulldogs, usually one of the top teams in Mississippi, will have a chance to show their stuff today and Saturday against some of the best high school sprinters in Mississippi, Louisiana, Texas and Alabama.

&uot;I’ve got more experience this year than I’ve ever had before,&uot; head coach Larry Wesley said. &uot;Some people talk about having a rebuilding year, well, this is not a rebuilding year for us.&uot;

Email newsletter signup

Leading the way will be Taji Dorsey, a senior sprinter for the Lady Bulldogs. For Dorsey, this season is her last chance to get a state title and impress some college track coaches.

Dorsey has been in contact with coaches at Tulane and said she is also interested in Houston.

Dorsey runs the 55-meter dash, the long jump and runs in two relays for the Bulldogs. Last year, she finished 27th out of 110 in the 55 meters and ninth in the long jump. Given the level of competition, those are both excellent finishes.

Wesley said he expects Dorsey to place in the top 10 in both events this time around.

Dorsey started track seriously after trying several sports.

&uot;I tried out for every other sport, but I didn’t really like them,&uot; Dorsey said. &uot;But I liked track. When I did it, I knew I liked it right away.&uot;

Lacolony Oliver will be there to help Dorsey out. Oliver is the middle-distance specialist for the team, and despite being a sophomore she’s already one of the more seasoned veterans. As an eighth grader, she ran cross country and track with the high school team, including running the 800 at the state meet.

&uot;When I was little, I was always running around with my brothers since I was the only girl,&uot; Oliver said.

Last year at LSU, she finished 10th out of 80 racers in the 800.

As for the team, Oliver thinks they have a good chance to got state this year and win it all.

&uot;They’re all looking good. Give us some time to work and get together and I think we can go to state and win,&uot; Oliver said.

Senior Travis Washington will head up the men’s contingent for Natchez. Washington runs the 55-meter dash and the 400. His goal for the LSU meet is simple.

&uot;I’m trying to go to LSU and win my events,&uot; Washington said.

Washington likes both events, he said.

&uot;The 55, it’s so short and quick. In the 400, I get to test myself. It’s a lot harder running the 400,&uot; Washington said.