Mill Creek’s Ladies Wrestling Team

Lady Wrestlers, Ivy Anderson, 11, Ava OShield,11, and Anaelle Joseph, 9, pose for a picture before heading to the state championship.
Lady Wrestlers, Ivy Anderson, 11, Ava O’Shield,11, and Anaelle Joseph, 9, pose for a picture before heading to the state championship.
Coach David Berliner
Photo of Ivy Anderson, 11, Anaelle Joseph, 9, Emily Doukey, 12, and Ava O’Shield,11, as they prepared for a tournament before the state championship.

David Berliner is one of the assistant coaches of the lady’s wrestling team here at Mill Creek. The much anticipated decision for Gwinnet County to introduce Lady’s Wrestling to schools has been fulfilled this school year, however, wrestling itself is not new to Mill Creek. A program for Lady’s Wrestlers has never been introduced before until this year. The Olympics currently has female wrestling, and many colleges are now putting women’s wrestling programs into place. Women’s wrestling programs in high schools are growing in popularity throughout Georgia. Girls in the state of Georgia have been wrestling and competing in the state championship since 2018. Gwinnet County has finally given coaches the tools and necessities to provide a successful competing wrestling team for women.

The week of February 11-17th was the last week of this years season for the lady wrestlers as they competed in the state championship on Wednesday, February 15th. The Lady Wrestlers have had two qualifying tournaments to get to the championships with only three girls making it to the state championship. In the women’s wrestling state championship, only twelve girls per weight class  qualify to go to the state championship. The three girls who qualified are Ivy Anderson, Ava O’shield, and Annaelle Joseph. Anderson is a junior, who has had some experience with wrestling due to her father being in the military overseas. Joseph is a freshman who has made it to state this year, which is her first year wrestling. O’shield is the third wrester who made it to state. O’shield is a junior who is a first-time wrestler as well. In total, three of our wrestlers made it to the state championships despite this being the first year of this program. Although the program being so new, Mill Creek wrestling team finished with three state champions, the lady wrestlers came through and brought home a state championship title.

Assistant Coach Berliner has been a wrestling coach on and off for about ten years, but he is specifically one of the girls coaches here at Mill Creek. Mill Creek’s Lady Wrestling team consists of eight girls who competed consistently throughout the wrestling season and about eleven girls who showed up to participate. Coach Berliner really focuses on teaching new wrestlers the fundamentals of wrestling and to gain strength in this one versus one sport. In wrestling, an two individuals are grappling, and they begin by standing in a neutral position in front of their opponent, and they try to pin their opponent down using various movements to gain points. The wrestler will gain points during the match based on things like how they pin down their opponent, how they escape being pinned down, and the movements they use to win. When looking for a good wrestler, Coach Berliner looks for someone who can work well on their feet, has a certain amount of toughness, and someone who is mentally strong. He also stated that, “Wrestling is considered a combat sport, so you have to have a certain amount of drive and toughness, but the athletic stuff we can build over time.” Coach Berliner has been preparing the wrestlers by reinforcing concepts that have been taught to the wrestlers and being supportive to build up their confidence for them to be ready for the tournament.

Coach Berliner as well as the rest of the coaches for the girls wrestling program are very proud of the wresters and their accomplishments. Their performance will prove the extent of their hard work and drive to compete. When asked about his hopes for the future of the program, Coach Berliner replied, “We want to grow our program, and our main goal is to build on what we have established during this first year of wrestling.” Ladies wrestling is a fun sport where thirty to forty girls could compete as a group here at Mill Creek. The journey to grow this program is not easy, but the future holds so much potential for this program and opens more diverse opportunities for students. Overall, their goal is to get the word out that Ladies Wrestling at Mill Creek is here, and the program will continue to grow as the years follow.

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