LSE introduces its first-ever Girls’ Wrestling Team for the 2022-23 winter sports season


Chloe Fitzgibbon, Co-Editor-In-Chief

Beginning this year, wrestling at LSE will now be separated by gender, therefore forming the new LSE Girls’ Wrestling Team. The team will be head coached by Pound Middle School teacher Brayden Wills, and assistant coached by LSE Special Education teacher Kimberly Hall. 

The decision to divide the sport was made to give women wrestlers better opportunities for success. 

“It became separated due to the fact that girls shouldn’t have to wrestle boys to prove they belong in the sport, as well as the fairness aspect of it all. There are no other sports where girls have to compete against boys if they want to participate,” Hall said. 

Hall believes there will be a significant increase in girls going out for the sport now that it will hopefully be a more comfortable environment. She says she has already seen big changes in numbers as a result of the sanctioning of girls’ wrestling as a Nebraska Schools Association Activity (NSAA) sport, and she hopes LSE will contribute to this increasing trend. 

“In 2020-21 girls’ wrestling was considered an emerging sport in Nebraska and had 300 participants across the state,” she said. “In 2021-22, girls’ wrestling became an NSAA sanctioned sport and participation was up by 150 percent, so over 700 participants. And it will just continue to grow.”  

Over 150 Nebraska schools are registered to have a girls’ wrestling team this year. 

As of now, practices will be at the same time and place as the boys’ team, but they will remain divided. 

“If numbers grow, there could be potentially two separate practices,” Hall said. 

Hall recognizes it can be intimidating to join a brand new sport, but taking that chance is the only way to get numbers up. 

“What I would say to someone who is nervous to try it is just to come and see what it’s all about. You’ll never know if you like it if you don’t try,” she said. “And with it being the first year here at LSE, the majority of the girls coming out will be brand new to the sport.” 

Hall suggests coming to preseason events before the commitment of the official start of practices. 

“If you do want to try it out before the season starts, there will be open mat on Mondays and Wednesdays from 3:30-5 p.m.,” she said. 

Hall is looking forward to seeing what awaits this first season of LSE Girls’ Wrestling. 

“I’m most excited about this season because it’s the first year of the program,” Hall said. “I think it is going to be so cool to see how things play out and how much the girls improve throughout the season.”