After years of wrestling boys, girls will now be allowed to participate in female regional and state championships. Read our article for more details.
New Mexico Has Just Approved Girls’ High School Wrestling
Girls’ high school wrestling has become incredibly popular in 2019, and New Mexico is the latest state that has approved the sport.
For a long time, female high school students who were interested in wrestling could only take part in the sport together with boys. New Mexico is among the six states that have approved girls’ wrestling this year. It seems that the future is looking bright for the sport.
In a decision last week, the BOD of N.M. Activities Association accepted a proposal of the creation of a new girls’ wrestling division. The division would be able to take part in the 2020 New Mexico wrestling championship. It was certainly among the highlights of the board’s last meeting for this school year.
Marcos Gallegos, head coach at Capital High School, Santa Fe, triumphantly remarked that the board’s decision to allow girls’ wrestling was “awesome.”
Moreover, Gallegos recalled his experience and claimed that, even though the girls on his team were highly successful, they were at a clear disadvantage.
During practice, girls needed to wrestle boys. It was quite a difficult endeavor due to differences in strength. In the case of Emma George, Gallegos stated that she earned some bad injuries. Emma recovered after an injury similar to a concussion. However, she could not participate in two different wrestling tournaments this year. Even though Emma is among the strongest athletes in Capital High, her coach claims that she simply doesn’t stand a chance against the boys.
Furthermore, Benito Martinez, wrestling team head coach in Pecos, said that the girls’ division would bring in many new wrestlers in the state. According to the NMAA, the number of girl wrestlers nearly doubled in the last two years. With the female division, the number could skyrocket.
Martinez also believes that there was plenty of female interest in high school wrestling. However, the girls felt intimidated by the boys and that’s why many of them did not take up the sport. The coach claimed that, even if female students were faster and more agile than their male opponents, they were simply overpowered. Thus, the approval of the female sport is a major step. It will raise a lot of interest from new athletes.
Girls’ wrestling was previously approved in California, Texas, Colorado, and Arizona, among others. Overall, New Mexico is the 18th state that has approved the sport. The sport will first include regional tournaments before the state championship. Medals will be given to the top three winners, and trophies will go to the top three winning teams.
Sally Marquez, director of the NMAA, commented in a press release that the association was looking forward to the creation of a wrestling division for girls.