POCATELLO, Idaho Washington dominated what is believed to have been the first girls Greco-Roman wrestling dual meet competition in the United States here during June 15-20.
The duals tournament attracted 160 girls from 10 states, competing for 12 different teams.
States represented at the Turf Wars in Pocatello were Alaska, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, and Washington.
Washington, which included girls from Sunnyside and Granger finished the Duals perfect at 5-0. In what amounted to the finals, Washington defeated Hawaii 40-33. California finished in third place.
The man behind this event is Ned Zollinger, a longtime supporter of wrestling in the West. He has been involved with USA Wrestling since the inception of the organization.
Zollinger participated in the very first Western Regional Kids/Cadet Championships when it was held in Gillette, Wyoming. He has been at every Western Regional event since, pushing three decades of service.
Back in 2010, Ned Zollinger was honored with The USA Wrestling’s President Award, signifying exceptional state leadership.
Back then Zollinger said, “I am hoping I can bring something back to inspire, and help the people I work with on the grassroots level.”
Girls Freestyle was added to the long running Junior Boys Duals three years ago. Since that time, Middle School, and Elementary School Duals were also included. And this year for the very first time, Girls Greco was added.
“It’s time,” Zollinger said. “It’s the right time. A lot of very stellar careers will begin right here.”
Matches consisted of pool competition and then placement rounds.
Washington also had a B team, and it fared well. Washington B defeated Montana 36-22 and West Orphan, 32-21. It lost to Oregon, 34-21, Hawaii, 51-17 and Idaho,30-29.
Washington A ran the table against Nevada, 58-12, Montana, 61-11, Hawaii, 40-33, Colorado, 58-15 and California, 43-30.
Sunnyside’s Lourdes Torres was on the winning Washington team. She competed at 155 pounds, losing two matches individually.
“All of the girls lost on or two,” she said. “But we didn’t lose any as a team.”