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Girls' wrestling gains traction at Lehi and Skyridge

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Ryann Anderegg | Touriddu

Wrestling is a sport that takes dedication and hard work to a whole new level. The rigorous sport improves mental and physical strength and helps competitors push themselves to be their best. Girls in the Lehi area have noticed this transformationas girls’ wrestling programs at Lehi and Skyridge High Schools have grown in recent years.

“I love that wrestling challenges me mentally and physically, that I get stronger and more fit, and that I can make new friends,” said Elizabeth Anderegg, a wrestler for Lehi HighSchool. “I decided to wrestle because my cousin (who wrestles for Wasatch High School) wanted me to try, and I thought it would be fun.”

Other female wrestlers expressed similar sentiments about the growing sport.

“I absolutely love wrestling and have so much respect for those who compete in this sport. I started wrestling when I was eightyears old. Watching my five-year-old brother wrestle ignited my inspiration,” said Skyridge High School wrestler Madison Sherman.

“An amazing and very convincing girls' wrestling coach, Billie Cox, talked to my parents about wrestling, and I was able to convince my dad to allow me to compete,” added Sherman.

The wrestling teams at Lehi and Skyridge High Schools are places where participants naturally develop confidence, work ethic, and discipline. They also make friends and treasuredmemories.

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“Your body achieves what your mind believes. Wrestling develops traits that help our society and our national workforce. It helps athletes with every other sport and makes them easier. Wrestling teaches many valuable traits, but the most important one is to have gratitude for everything that you can do and to have pride in yourself and your team-to believe through overcoming trials that anything is possible,” said Skyridgewrestling coach Lyle Mangum.

Lehi girls' wrestling programs have grown in the last few years. Skyridge High School girls’ wrestling team has seven girls: Makayla Price, Nadia Thomas, Maddie Sherman, Presley Schroeder, Elizabeth Brandt, Shaelynn Willes, EmyrynAumoeualogo and Alilia Tupou.

“Growing up wrestling, I’ve watched the sport of girls’wrestling grow so much. When I started, there weren’t a lot of female wrestlers, which meant I had to wrestle with the boys. Boys are great partners and prepare you for the real deal. It's such a boost to your confidence when you make it to the podium competing against boys. But I would say that boys are a different kind of animal. This makes me extremely happy that the all-girls wrestling program has exploded into what it is today,” said Sherman.

Lehi High School girls’ wrestling has four girls: Lizzie Anderegg, Suzy Clark, Cassidy Hutchison and Braylyn Linford. Anderegg believes the girls’ wrestling team at Lehi could be improved.

“We need more girls and a girls’ coach at Lehi. There are times I wrestle the boys. I don’t like it, and they don’t like it. There are around 45 boys. They are all nice to us, but girls wrestle differently than boys. Our bodies are different. Our strategies are different. The coaches are great, and they try to help us, but there are some tournaments that we can’t wrestle in because there’s not a girls’ division.”

Anderegg is hoping to convince other friends to join the team. “I hope to build the girl's team while I wrestle at Lehi. I have three more years to do it. It’s hard work, but worth it if you put in the time and effort.”

“We are a team, and Coach makes sure that we work together as a team. We support each other and cheer for each other. We all have to put forth our best effort and do the same workouts and conditioning,” said Anderegg.

Some may think that girls must have aggressive personalities to be wrestlers. Not so, says Sherman.

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“All the girls are so sweet off the mat, yet so extreme on the mat. Skyridge’s program is awesome. Our coaches work very hard and do their absolute best to make you a better wrestler,” added Sherman.

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