Girls Grapple with New Opportunity

Henry Maddock

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Mount Vernon is well-known for its historically strong men’s wrestling team. With many victories, the wrestling team has seemed unstoppable. And now Mount Vernon is making new history with the creation of the women’s wrestling team.

Coach Aaron Truitt said the idea for a female team came from Kyle Jaspers, a Mount Vernon Middle School wrestling coach. “Girls wrestling is getting more popular in the world of sports,” Truitt said, “Jaspers started advertising the spring before to try and gain traction before the season started.” Now there are six team members and three coaches.

Senior Maddie Shultz explained her motivation for trying wrestling: “I have always enjoyed strength training and fitness challenges.” She added, “Most practices so far are open mat because of the low availability of the coaches.”

Junior Julia Wheeler said she wanted to join because, “I was a wrestling manager for the boys since eighth grade and I wanted to give it a try for myself.” Wheeler said that she has always liked the sport of wrestling.“Training and practices for us are very minimal compared to the boys due to the newness of the team.” Wheeler said some good characteristics of a wrestler include, “Confidence, no nerves, and a little bit of cockiness on the mat to show that you mean business.”

There are several teams in the area for the young women to compete against. Other districts that have women’s wrestling include Iowa City West, Anamosa, Waverly, BGM, and Linn Mar.

Coach Adam Truitt wrote a letter to Mustang Wrestling fans detailing his nerves entering the new realm of women’s wrestling, but expressed utmost confidence in his team to overcome their lack of experience and make their mark as Mount Vernon’s pioneering team.

Paul Morf (‘90), the father of freshman wrestler Abbie Morf, said he is really excited about the sport.“I would not have believed girls wrestling would be this much fun to watch,” he said. “The parents are crazy into it, the coaches are crazy into it. Some girls are really good. Others have no idea what they are doing. All giving their all. It is a great slice of Americana, pure amateur sport at its finest.”

If a student is interested in joining the team, she should contact any of the current wrestlers or coaches: Kyle Jaspers, Aaron Truitt, or Adam Truitt. Even better, they can show up to practice at any time.

The girls wrestle tonight in Anamosa.