“Balance sports and your social life with school to be successful.” These are the sage words of MHS 12th grader Philip Oxford, a response which he offered to me when I asked him what advice he has for others following his path of success. Philip is beginning his last year at Mammoth High School, taking with him a cumulative grade point average of roughly a 3.9. The MHS X-Country Team member is not only a four-year athlete, but also a four-year academic. There is a lot to say about this week’s Husky Student-Athlete of the Week.
Philip’s favorite school subject is Physics. He is keen toward the math-based approach to the sciences. It is a course that has given Philip the very attainable goal that he seeks, to attend California Poly San Luis Obispo next year to study either Mechanical Engineering or Electrical Engineering. He aspires to enter the field of engineering after obtaining a four-year degree from one of our state’s finest institutions. Philip spends a good amount of time on the weekends alone doing the necessary studying that is going to get him there. Oxford’s sense of endurance is found not only in cardiovascular sports, but also in his studies.
Philip has just begun his fourth year as a member of the MHS X-Country Team. Head Coach Scott Luke told me of Philip, “He’s been a captain the last two years. Philip is a good testament to what high school athletics are all about in that he might not be the fastest runner, but he still doesn’t miss practice, and he always tries his best. He is a great role model for younger kids.”
Philip himself credits his older sisters Lauren and Gwen as being his inspirations. Both sisters were four-year members of the MHS Nordic Team. Lauren later went on to graduate from UCSB, Gwen from UC Irvine.
Nordic skiing is at the core of Philip’s heart in the world of sports. He enjoys running for the MHS X-Country Team, but does so largely as a means to dry-land train for the Nordic season later to come. I witnessed Philip’s dedication to Nordic when I helped coach the skiers a couple of years back, and he is a stand-up citizen and dedicated skier. My fellow coaches at the time, Nancy Fiddler, Alana Levin, and Jim Barnes, only had positive words about Philip.
Philip’s goal this year is to get accepted to SLO, along with qualifying to participate in the Nordic Junior Nationals. Obtaining both feats will require a strong work ethic, one this senior possesses.
Outside of X-Country running and Nordic skiing, Philip has been a regular participant in the Winter Biathlon. He enjoys the combination of skiing and shooting. Dr. Mike Karch has hooked this kid. Oxford also shoots a bit of hoops with his friends, and he likes the LA Dodgers for their tradition in sports. Philip’s X-Country Team is competing in away events this season, but you are bound to catch him at Tamarack any given weekday this upcoming winter while training for Nordic events. Then again, this kid is rather hard to catch.
Run like the wind, Oxford, and ski for the gold. Your school and community are quite proud of you.