Valley Center athletes prepare for first girls wrestling season
Back in April, the Kansas State High School Activities association voted to sanction girls wrestling, that vote passed unanimously recognizing girls wrestling as a sport in the state.
Monday night was the first girls wrestling dual in the state in Topeka, on Friday more wrestlers will have the chance to put their skills to the test in official matches.
One of those teams will be the Valley Center Hornets
"I knew it was something that was coming down the pike," said Head Coach Justin Schwartz "It is something that has been in the works for a few years and finally KSHSAA pulled the trigger on it which is a great move," he added.
Valley Center is one of the many schools who will field girls wrestling teams which will now have their own matches, and a state tournament.
'I look forward to it because they've been in the wrestling room working hard, it's always good to see how well you've prepared them," noted Schwartz.
10 girls are currently on the Valley Center wrestling team one of which is Isabella Ramirez, a senior who says she's seen the sport up close watching friends and family compete, now it's her turn
"I saw the passion that everyone had for this sport and I wanted to be able to experience this with them and experience the love that they had for it and i've definitely developed it along the way,"she explained
One of her teammates, sophomore Cheyenne Blackwood, spent last winter on the basketball team. She says she wanted to try something different.
"It's really hard, like mentally challenging an physically challenging and it is definitely brand new, everything I've never heard of before, it's really fun though, I like it alot," Blackwood shared.
The pair says they've seen a lot of positive feedback when talking about growing the sport, they also say they've heard the naysayers, to whom their reply is simple.
"Come watch me, then you can change your mind if you want because we're going to show you how we do it," Blackwood smiled.
Now, the teammates along with other athletes will have a chance to get their name on the wall.
"Getting up there would be a good start for the girls, maybe encourage more to come out and be a role model for girls that are even thinking about it," Blackwood boasted.
"It's going to be tough, but I know I'll have that support from my side of the mat, if I go down, I know my team is going down with me and if I win, they're going up with me all the way," she finished.