Women’s Wrestling Forms At THS


Photo provided by the family of K. McGennis

The three members of the innaugural THS Women’s Wrestling team, Ashton Estill, Kayla McGennis and Cha’mya Adams.

Katelyn Gray, Reporter

Wrestling has been considered the sport for the little guy. But what about the little girl?

Timberland is now offered female students the chance to be a part of history by being on the school’s first MSHSAA approved women’s wrestling team.

In a vote of 202-41, female students are now able to compete with their same gender and no longer have to go against the male students. As such, Timberland has formed a female wrestling team composed of three girls and about three coaches.

“The benefits of having a small girls team for wrestling is that you can get to know everybody, and you can become really good friends with all the girls […] and find out their styles and how you can help them get better,” sophomore wrestler Kayla McGennis said.

The MSHSAA approved plan gives girls a two year transition period where they can decide if they prefer to participate in their school’s boy’s wrestling team lineup and girl’s wrestling team lineup for regular season contest. After the two year mark, however, girls  have to only compete against girls at girls only competitions.

“The girls that have done it before; they had to really work and prove themselves to many people that they were ‘worthy’ of being there,” wrestling coach Jeferry Renz said.

Currently, a school under a MSHSAA membership is able to allow coaches to oversee both the female and male team.

“The biggest thing is sometimes boys come in with having experience. For most of these girls, they’re brand new […] You really are starting from scratch, teaching them the fundamentals of what’s going on. It’s not different in how you coach. You’re still going to be tough on them when you need to be tough on them and you’re gonna help them out when they need to be helped out,” Renz said.

The girl’s and boy’s seasons began on late October and their state championships will end on the same date. However, female weigh-ins are submitted before the boys due to the two year transition period.

“I guess it’s better they did it now, than later. It’s going to open up a lot of opportunities for other people,” senior wrestler Ashton Estill said.

There are little league teams where young girls are able to meet with current high school female wrestlers and coaches and learn all the fun wrestling has to offer.

“We’ve got a few girls in our Wolf Pup Program and maybe a few more will jump on and see that it takes all types of girls. You can be the girly girl; you can be the tough, physical girl. All types can come out and be successful in this,” Renz said.

  *All additional information was according to the MSHSAA website

Ashton Estill
Kayla McGennis at a wrestling practice.
Ashton Estill
Cha’mya Adams and Kayla McGennis practice.