The student news site of Morton East High School

Pony Express News

The student news site of Morton East High School

Pony Express News

The student news site of Morton East High School

Pony Express News

Morton Girls Wrestlers head to State

It’s a clean finish this year as 3 girls attempt to takedown championship
Morton girls wrestlers hug it out after a clean finish.

Three members of Morton’s girls wrestling team  finished in the top 4 of their sectional competition and have qualified for the IHSA state tournament.  The qualifying wrestling girls are Hope Donnamario, Nayeli Rodriguez, and Violet Mayo.  (Five additional girls from the team had qualified for sectionals.)

Girls Wrestling Coach Fernando Arrieta answers some questions about the season, team and sport:

What is the season record (wins/losses)?

“This season they ended with a record of 17-9. In conference dual meets, we are 6-0.  We currently have one girl who can become a 3x state qualifier. Morton has had a strong showing each year; our best year we made it to state with 9 wrestlers back in 2022,” said Coach Fernando Arratia.

“(Our girls) placed 1st place in the West Suburban Conference tournament (this year), beating teams both in the Gold and the Silver.  Overall, we took 2nd place in Regionals,” added Coach Arratia.

How long has there been a girls wrestling team?

“Girls wrestling at Morton has been present for a while, since before I have been a part of the program. Officially through IHSA, girls wrestling started in 2022. In Illinois, there were only 903 girls that wrestled back in 2022. Last year the number in Illinois went up to 1600. Girls wrestling is a growing sport with numbers projected to go up this year as well,” said Coach Fernando Arratia.

How is girls wrestling different from boys?

“Both boys and girls learn the same thing. In practice, the coaches attempt to give the girls the same opportunities as the boys. In matches, boys are stronger and faster when compared; it can be very competitive. Girls, on the other hand, are more flexible. You usually see more of a camaraderie between the girls after a match between teammates and the opposition,” Coach Fernando Arratia said.

“They train extra hours than the boys do; therefore, the girls are training harder,” Arratia added.

Do girls ever wrestle boys?

“Before 2022, there was no choice for the girls; if they wanted to compete, they had to wrestle a boy. I have seen my fair share of Morton girls beating boys in a match; even this season, I have seen it done. I like to give the girls the choice, whatever makes them feel comfortable. There is always a group of girls that want to wrestle the best person possible in a match or practice, as long as they feel comfortable, then I allow them to wrestle boys. The sport does a good job at protecting wrestlers in a match, which puts me at ease when I see a boy vs a girl,” said Coach Fernando Arratia.

Now, let’s hear from one of this year’s wrestlers:

“It’s a big step to even consider joining. I’d still say the sport is still developing; it’s also more male-dominated still. Just do it for yourself if you want to try it. I think anyone should try for their first week. Don’t be discouraged by the progress or from other people being ahead of you. You’re the only one that steps out on the mat. Everything will be on you; it’s a lot different with other sports such as basketball and football; you’re going to have your whole team to rely on, with wrestling you have yourself out there. There are definitely points where it will be really discouraging, whether you’re facing people more advanced than you, or you’re just having to push yourself to go to practice. In the end, it’s just about building character. So if that’s something you’re up for, then I suggest recommendation, and if you feel discouraged, don’t give up on the sport quickly. Give it some time and it might grow on you,” said Morton wrestler Faith Comas.

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    FaithApr 12, 2024 at 10:18 am

    Best article best journalist best sport yay