Normal Community High School will host Illinois’s first girls’ wrestling tournament on November 27, following the announcement of a state series in the sport by the Illinois High School Association on June 14.
Like boys’ wrestling, girls’ wrestling is a winter sport, and the state championship matches will take place on Saturday, February 26, at Grossinger Motors Arena in Bloomington.
“This is an exciting development for the IHSA and for female wrestlers around the state,” said IHSA Executive Director Craig Anderson in a press release. “The number of female participants continues to grow, and we are proud to be able to offer an incredible venue and stage to recognize them on. This is an important step for Illinois high school wrestling as a whole.”
“It’s fun to see the growth,” Laynee Scheck quoted coach Trevor Kaufman at Normal Community as saying in The Inkspot student newspaper at the high school, “especially [for] females. There are a lot of opportunities for female wrestlers.”
The IHSA joined the state athletic associations of Florida and Wisconsin in sanctioning girls’ wrestling as a sport with a state title to win this year. Already on the list were 23 states. With the addition of Florida, Wisconsin, and Illinois this year, a total of 26 states sanction girls’ wrestling at the high school level, including Maryland, which joined the list in 2019.