Girl’s wrestling has been making leaps and bounds in the State of Colorado. I remember the first girl’s tournament I had the privilege to cover back in 2015. Brent Harvey rest his soul, had a tournament series focused on girls only called “War of the Roses”. Noelle Flora & Josh Rodriguez were instrumental in bringing the “War of Roses” series to Colorado and giving the sport of girls wrestling a much needed platform . At the time there wasn’t really a huge demand for CHSAA to get involved and not enough girls to start individual programs with the hopes of being successful.
It’s 2019 and the ladies have spoken. Girl’s wrestling was approved as a CHSAA sanctioned sport back in May and starting in the 20-21 season the girls will have their own official CHSAA State sanctioned tournament. According to the rules for the 19-20 season, girls must decide by regionals whether or not they will wrestle regionals with girls only and compete in the Girls H.S. State tournament or compete in the CHSAA State tournament, with the boys at the Pepsi Center in Feb. 2020. For some girls living in small towns, where girls programs are not easily accessible, they choose to wrestle with their school team up until regionals. Such is the case for Adalia George who wrestles for Steamboat Springs H.S. George currently a sophomore this year got her shot on the mat for the first time this season at the Middle Park tournament. Going 2-2 in the tournament she earned a 4th place spot on the podium. George was plagued by injuries last year and struggled to really compete as a Freshman. She went to the girls State tournament last year but didn’t place. She’s working really hard in the program at Steamboat H.S. this year and says she has a great support system. “Whenever I want to quit, the wrestlers in the room, won’t let me”. “They push me to do my best and not give up”. The plan for now is to compete with the girls come regional time but she definitely feels she’s getting a step up with wrestling with her H.S. team and traveling to the school tournaments and duals. When asked what advice she would give to the young girls just starting out in the sport, ” No matter how hard it is never give up, just keep pushing”. She also says, ”Sometimes you feel like you are doing it for nothing when you lose so many times, but you just have to keep pushing through mentally and once you get through the grind the top is so good”.
It seems we are sending more and more wrestlers from the State of Co. on to compete at the college level and that opportunity now includes the girls. Adeline Gray , Maya Nelson and many others were huge in putting wrestling on the map for the ladies in Co. From the very first girl’s tournament that I covered in 2015 up until now, it certainly has been a journey……….Once again I tribute that to a “Heart of a Wrestler”.
Melanie Johnson- MileHigh Prep Report