Girls wrestling earns MHSAA’s first-ever team state title

Cam Roth

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With former-senior Megan Stockenhour, now-senior Sarah Schenck, and now-junior Rachel Schenck medaling at the state tournament last year, despite an impressive finish, the returning girls wanted more.

Thanks to countless hours of training during the off-season, they were able to achieve the title of team state champions. The FHC girls wrestling team was able to come out on top against 120 different schools. 

With girls wrestling programs popping up all around the country and exponentially growing in popularity, the girls from FHC were determined to remain the best ladies team in Michigan. Prior to the state tournament at Adrian College, the girls were given three major opportunities to compete out on the mat throughout the season. 

“Overall, I think this was my favorite season competition-wise,” senior Hannah Becker said. “Everyone on the team had a great season and was able to tuck some wins under their belts.”

The girls made light work of any and all competition they faced at the Union Invitational.  Hannah, senior Sarah Schenck, and junior Rachel Schenck each went undefeated throughout the day and pinned every opponent they faced. 

Just like every other sport, experiencing situations that allow you to improve is very important to finding success. Luckily at Union, the girls were given the chance to spend a significant amount of time on the mat and compete against different opponents which ultimately made them better wrestlers. 

“At Union, we were able to get some precious mat time with a few new people,” sophomore Remmie Gavle said. “It’s really important for us to be able to wrestle different girls to get more experience, and I think we all improved from that. Plus, like always, it was really fun to compete with the team.”

During the Kent County tournament, against some of the toughest competitors in the state, once again Hannah, Sarah, and Rachel were able to dominate. The day resulted in the Schenck sisters both finishing second, and Hannah coming in at third. The Kent County tournament has always been known for being a challenging tournament and to usually show participants exactly where they stand as far as ranking in the state goes. 

Lastly, at the Sandusky individual tournament, senior Shay Keaton was able to have a solid day of performance, and junior Rebecca Dooley was able to place second in her weight class and had an all-around successful day. Meanwhile, Hannah was able to pin each of her opponents in the first period. Rachel and Sarah were also crowned co-champs in their respective weight class. 

Departing seniors Hannah and Sarah, are hopeful for what will be next year’s lady Ranger wrestlers. 

“I’m really excited to see what next year brings,” said Hannah. “I hope that the girls’ team will continue to grow in size and bring home that team state title for a second time.”

In addition, head coach of the entire wrestling program at FHC, Brad Anderson is nothing but optimistic about what will be next year’s ladies team. 

“The girls wrestling team did exceptionally well this season,” Anderson said. “They met and exceeded expectations. They are a tough group of athletes that worked very hard. They are hard-nosed, too. I’m very proud of their accomplishments and in the example, they have set for future lady wrestlers—and all wrestlers for that matter. Obviously, when you win a state title, the goal is to do it again the next year. That’ll take hard work and commitment to get better because now we have a target on our back.”