VERNON, Texas (TNN) - Time in and time out Texoma athletes show off remarkable athleticism and skill.
But there’s one team in Vernon you might not have known existed, who thinks their sport is the toughest of them all.
“I want to say it’s better than any other sport,” Vernon senior Felicity Ortega said. “It’s tougher. I’d say it’s tougher than football, tennis, all that.”
They can definitely make a case for that.
These girls are tough and however they found their way to the mats, the competition is keeping them there.
“It lets me take out my anger," Vernon sophomore Hannah Dominguez said. "I like pushing on people and being able to win a match.”
“I’m small but I’m tough at the same time," Ortega said. "It don’t look like it. It’s just you on the mat, you let out so many things that you didn’t know you had.
"It’s a really fun sport.”
Vernon has had wrestling since the ’90s and the boy’s team has been quite successful.
Because of Title IX, if you have a boy’s wrestling program, you have to have a girls team as well.
And they have had one, but it wasn’t until this year that there was a resurgence of girls wrestling, not only in Vernon but in a surrounding state.
<"For years, this sport has had a glaring divided line," Vernon head coach Derek Myers said. “Even in Oklahoma, until this year, girls had to wrestle boys.”
Texas has been a couple of years ahead of that curve, but the 48 girls in the Lady Lions wrestling program know this is just the beginning and they are working for more than just a state championship.
“I just feel like it really gives women the opportunity to do what people think is just a guys sport," Dominguez said.
“To me, it’s just a big push. Girls, women and females, they can do it.”
Vernon is the only school wrestling in Texoma.
This Friday, December 6th, the Lady Lions will wrestle Dumas for “Ladies Night Out” in Vernon.