The Student News Site of Bellevue East High School

The Tom Tom

The Student News Site of Bellevue East High School

The Tom Tom

The Student News Site of Bellevue East High School

The Tom Tom

Girls wrestling owns the mat one player at a time

Peyton Ayala
Pin her Down, During the Black and Purple scrimmage dual on Nov. 29, sophomore Makaela Davis, in purple, competes against fellow teammate senior Ally Cook, in black. The scrimmage was used to fundraise snacks fro teh girls wrestling team. “Wrestling seniors is scary,” Davis said.

At a wrestling meet, girls wrestling head coach cheers on senior Paris Plough while she competes against her opponent. Plough is member of East’s girls varsity wrestling team.

The Nebraska School Activities Association voted to sanction girls wrestling 8-0, and started the sport in the 2021-2022 school year with 12 weight classes. With girls wrestling now a recognized sport, it has grown a lot at East since then. 

“We started with 17, year 1, 22 in year 2 and we started the season with 38 this year,” head girls wrestling coach Brian Irsik said. “It’s growing and it’s a great experience working with so many individuals who are interested in wrestling.”

Girls wrestling isn’t just a part of Irisk’s work life at East. It also affects his home life.

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“My daughter’s into wrestling; she’s in fifth grade now. I watched it start to gain steam. We’re starting to look more into sanctioning girls wrestling,” Irsik said. “I kind of wanted to be a part of that journey so that was part of the motivation.”

Many wrestlers have their reasons for joining the team, like it being a sport that they had been interested in for a long time or had friends who were participating in it.

“I was just thinking about it, a friend recommended it to me last year and told me to come out and try it and it kind of stayed,” Plough said.

In Bellevue, East and West have a combined team, and both groups practice together.

“It’s nice because you get to have bonds outside of this school like other people,” Fletcher said. “So if you go to something for West, there are people you can hang out with.” 

With so few girls joining wrestling to start with, many quit. This has posed more challenges for Irsik.

“With it being so new, some challenges have been trying to keep a full roster. We might start with 22 kids, but you might finish with 12 and you know some kids bunch up in the same areas,” Irsik said. “The challenge is trying to make it fun and interesting and trying to keep everyone out for a long period of time.”

Irsik hopes to gain more athletes each year. Fletcher is one wrestler who wrestled last year. 

“He [Irsik] makes practice fun,” Fletcher said. “Everybody on the team is really nice and the tournaments are fun. Everybody’s good at supporting too.”

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Lucy Cook, Co-editor in Chief
Hello, my name is Lucy, and I’m the Co-Editor-in-Chief of the Tom Tom. I’m a manager for both football and boys’ basketball teams. In my free time, I like to listen to music, dance, and watch shows, such as Falling Into Your Smile and Bad Buddy. I raise 4 chickens in my backyard.

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