In my freshmen year, I did not know who I was or who I wanted to be. I was heading down the wrong path and hanging around the wrong type of people. I knew that I did not want to be a cheerleader anymore, but staying in shape was important to me. So some friends who had joined the wrestling team convinced me to join. Two weeks later, though, they both quit the team. I never would have thought that I would be a female wrestler in a sport that was male dominated.

After the first week of wrestling practice I could barely walk. Every muscle in my body was sore. I wasn’t very good at first, and in my early matches I was pinned to the mat like a corsage was to a prom dress. Next I started winning, defeating boys which is something the male ego dreads. I was the first Oak Hill high school female wrestler to win a match out of about nine girls within four years. I ended the season with five wins against boys. I placed second at the regional and was also the first female in class “B” to qualify for the state championships.

My sophomore year flew by. I did all right but mostly used the year to learn and build up my skills, winning matches along the way. I attended wrestling camps, being the only girl out of a hundred plus guys. People do not see the amount of physical effort it takes to wrestle a full six minutes. It is a full body and cardiovascular work out. Lifting weights before practice, then working out and drilling moves during practice, and running after practice is what gave me the advantage over many of my male opponents.

By the time I was a junior I had lost the “just a girl” out look on wrestling. I wasn’t a girl when I was on the mat, I was a wrestler. Wrestling gave me something that I never really had before, confidence. People around Maine knew who I was and what I was about, which did not come easy. My junior year showed me how hard I could work, showed me how to break my limits. My attitude excelled to beyond what I could have expected. I wanted to work hard, I wanted a challenge, and I wanted to wrestle, win or lose. Again I was stuck at second place in the regional, still being the only female to qualify for the state championships. My “boy’s” season ended with a 24-10 record. I did not want to stop there because I realized there was much more out there for me.

I did my research and found girl only wrestling tournaments. Wow, how great that would be to wrestle girls.

Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or login first for digital access. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.