Girls wrestling wraps up first official season


Photo by Yusra Waris

Juniors Natalia Sanchez and Sariah Dawson demonstrate a tight waist chop during practice. This season was the first official one for the girls wrestling team.

Following the makings of the school’s first female wrestling team last year, the team concluded its first season with two wrestlers qualifying for Regionals.

“[This season was] good as far as the membership,” wrestling coach David Rozanski said. “We started with three back in September and now we have seven girls that are wrestling, so that’s been a positive. It’s just the beginnings of a program and getting them to experience and realize what wrestling is.”

Since the girls didn’t have their own coach to train with them, they mainly learned through observing the boys team’s practice.

“It was just kind of difficult because we didn’t have as much hands-on learning,” junior Aniyah Nelson said. “It was more of a watching and trying to see how we would do it.”

Rozanski said there have been some challenges in getting familiar with and learning the weight classes, going out to compete and understanding the sport.

“It’s just been sometimes overwhelming for them,” Rozanski said. “It’s just getting over those hurdles and taking hopefully the next step [so] that they understand the sport and what needs to be done to get better. They took a chance by trying it, and they went through the every day training and that’s what wrestling teaches you: hard work.”

Among the opportunities joining the girls wrestling team has offered, junior Sariah Dawson said she had the chance to prove people wrong.

“People doubted me because I was so small and I turned out to be good,” Dawson said. “I think it’s very important to show that girls can be just as tough as guys because a lot of people think that girls are weak, but actually we are stronger than they think.”

Regional qualifier junior Natalia Sanchez said she hopes the team’s achievements this season will encourage more girls to join next year.

“It’s definitely going to open up a lot more doors for people,” Sanchez said. “We’ve definitely been talking about it more. It’s definitely going to allow girls that have always been interested in something like this to join next year and the years to come because they know that girls have done it and we’ve made it pretty far.”