Wrestling is one of the most difficult sports that Lebanon High School has to offer. But, until this year, LHS did not have an opportunity for girls who are interested in wrestling to participate in their own team. Luckily, LHS recently made it possible for girls to channel their talents for wrestling in a girls’ team that competes at matches and larger-scale events.

A few members of the girls’ wrestling team at LHS expand on what makes this sport feel like home to them, and why they decided to dedicate their lives to wrestling.

Senior Lexi Bernal has been wrestling for nearly ten years, ever since her uncle got inspired her to begin wrestling. She has not only excelled on the mat, but she has won state five times just before her senior year. She loves the sport because it is challenging and it pushes her to do her best. She has individual goals for the season that she hopes to fulfill.

“My hope for the season is to make it to state for the sixth time, and to maintain my varsity position,” said Bernal.

Unlike Bernal, sophomore Gracie Brandt recently started wrestling in September because her friends urged her to join the team. So far, Brandt is enjoying the sport; she loves the atmosphere, intensity and people that are on the team alongside her. She has personalized goals for her performance this season.

“My hope for this season is to come off of my back injury and at least make it to regionals,” said Brandt.

Like Brandt, freshman Shelby Cope has not been wrestling her whole life. Cope began wrestling in 6thgrade after her brother told her that he believed she could not do it. To prove him wrong, she joined the team and is currently enjoying and excelling in the sport. She loves the sport because she is encouraged to be aggressive, when in other sports you are not as encouraged to engage people aggressively. She has a team goal that she hopes the girls can fulfill.

“My hope for the season is that the girls’ team can make it to state,” said Cope.

The team has already been successful as a whole and individually as they start out their first season as a conjoined