SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — Every day after school, around 4 pm, the wrestling room at Olympian High School is packed wall to wall with wrestlers. However, there is one thing a bit unique about their practices, at times the girls outnumber the boys.
“It’s pretty exciting for sure,” says senior Makenna Harbin. “Girls wrestling is one of the fastest growing sports right now.”
The increasing number of girls in the sport is becoming a trend at high schools all over San Diego.
“Our San Diego CIF Section went from 89 girls to over 500 girls,” says Olympian wrestling coach Jaylord Fabunan.
On the day I attended practice, I counted 56 wrestlers on the mat. There were 24 boys and 32 girls.
“I just wanted to try something new,” says wrestler Sophia Gonzalez. “It really looked like a fun sport.”
“It came naturally for me, wrestling is like a family thing for me,” says Harbin.
“I was just into it. I wasn’t really nervous because I have a background in it kind of,” says Alina Solis.
So why the big increase in the number of girls wrestling? Coach Fabunan has the answer.
“I think the moment we started saying you have your own tournaments, you have your own CIF, you have your own state tournaments, then you started seeing more girls come out.”
The number of girls in wrestling has increased so much, there are now tournaments for the girls. Olympian hosts a tournament called ‘Goddess of Olympia’, where they expect over 300 girls from all over Southern California and Nevada to participate.
“Being able to wrestle against 20-plus girls in a bracket is exciting and new. Back in the day, there were no girls wrestling,” says Solis.
“I’m a senior,” says Harbin. “And the number of girls has become overwhelming. It’s just like so awesome, and to me, it’s just so cool.”
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