IDAHO FALLS, Idaho (KIFI/KIDK) - Girls wrestling will be a sanctioned high school sports in Idaho starting in the 2021-2022 school year. The Idaho High Schools Activities Association approved the move at its board of directors meeting Tuesday.
The state wrestling tournament in 2022 will have a girls only bracket for the first time. "I'm beyond excited," Bonneville sophomore Kayla Vail said when told the news. "So overwhelming. It makes me excited for wrestling season to start."
Bonneville wrestling coach Zairrick Wadsworth says the number of girls participating in wrestling has doubled the past two years.
"There's some people here in Idaho that want to go be successful in wrestling as a girl. Now they have an opportunity to go and make that happen. Dreams get to be real life."
Vail believes that now even more girls will take up wrestling. "The idea of just wrestling girls, especially in high school, seems a lot more like normal. There's less concern with parents."
Wadsworth says this move could be significant for all of wrestling, not just the girls. "I think it's a great opportunity for student athletes all over the state of Idaho. Increasing the boys population as well."
He also feels it could have impact at the next level. Wadsworth noted that having girls wrestling in the state can be a factor in helping to keep college programs.
"I think it is a huge influence in all wrestling in general."