By Emma Taylor
Without a doubt, the sport of wrestling has brought many together, and, in the past, it was primarily boys. However, this year Cedar High School and many other Utah schools have added girl’s wrestling teams. These teams bring girls together who, until now, have not been able to find a sport that they truly love. The athletes have stayed fully committed to the sport and have put in much work to become better and better and are excited to be a part of something new.
The Cedar High team has eighteen girls, with hopes to grow more through the coming years. These girls are setting a new standard of strength and diligence. They get to be part of Cedar High School’s history and are grateful to have great leaders and coaches, both girls and boys, to look up to.
When asking a few members of the boys team how the girls team may affect them or the school community, the most common answer was that there is no change to them or their team, but they were “happy to see female independence” and a growing team. One boy stated: “girls want to be girls, but as long as they are committed, they are just as much part of the team as the boys.”
We also asked teachers’ opinions on how the new girls team has, or will, impact the school community. Coach Bennett started off by saying that the sport of wrestling, no matter who you are, helps to “build mental toughness that can be carried through life.” He added: “girls wrestling is gaining a lot of attention that contributes to the school community, adding to the wrestling experience.”
A student in Mrs. Johnson’s homeroom class said, “The team gives girls a different status of fairness and brings a great representation of supporting female empowerment.” Mr. Wood said that the girls team is a great asset to the school by “showing that girls can do tough sports just like the boys.” Mrs. Plewe responded that this team is going to “make students feel more included.”
Retired wrestling coach and current teacher, Mr. Weaver, said, “Wrestling gives boys and girls equal but separate opportunities.” He added that being a part of the wrestling team helps to “develop a level of responsibility” and “wrestling gives a great self-introspective view of who you are.”
One of the current assistant coaches for the boys team, Coach Field, says that “the girls wrestling team helps the school’s image by giving more opportunities to a lot of girls.” Current teacher and assistant coach, Coach Powell, gave the statement that “girls wrestling will bring back the way boys wrestling used to be.” He added more on how this sport gives the girls opportunities to enjoy sports like never before. The head coach of the wrestling team, Coach Payne, says that girls wrestling will “give girls a more individual sport and a chance to improve where it’s not a team environment and more of an individual improvement sport.”
The girls team is “not a plus or minus to anybody, it’s just new and it’s never been done,” says Coach Payne.
The new girls wrestling team is excited to show what the sport has to offer to so many different people and are grateful for the new opportunities that have been placed before them, as well as the support that they’ve received to start a new part of our school’s history.