The Capital City girls wrestling program continues to grow.
The Lady Cavaliers enter the 2023-24 season starting today at the Owensville Tournament with 15 wrestlers on roster, including two juniors, eight sophomores and five freshmen.
“That’s probably the highest we’ve had since we started,” Capital City coach Mitch Werdehausen said. “They’re practicing hard, they’re showing up and I have great aspirations for them now and in the future when they get more experience.”
The Lady Cavaliers will need time to gain that experience as only one Capital City grappler returns after wrestling in the district meet last season. The Cavaliers also lost their lone state qualifier, Jacinda Espinosa, when her family moved.
Maci Albright returns to the Lady Cavaliers after going 2-2 in the 120-pound Class 2 District 3 bracket last season.
“She was one match from state last year,” Werdehausen said.
Werdehausen said he expects junior Carmen Hill, sophomores Madeleine Jones and Skyler Jones and freshmen Athena Anderson and Aubrey Kempker to all be point scorers for the Lady Cavaliers in meets this season while the young roster continues to get used to high school wrestling.
Bronlynn Turner joins Hill as the other junior on roster, while Albright, Skyler Jones, Addison Bernskoetter, Dayana Parks, Maeve Lammers, Madeleine Jones, Karley Vanderslive and Haley Hedrick are the sophomores.
Shannon Segall, Kempker, Anderson and Linzey Smith are the freshmen.
Werdehausen said a few of the Lady Cavaliers’ younger wrestlers come into the season after wrestling in national tournaments during the summer, helping give the team a little extra mat experience.
“We’ve got a pretty good freshman group coming in,” Werdehausen said. “We’ve got some experience coming in, which helps a lot.”
After starting in the Owensville Tournament, the Lady Cavaliers will go to the Fort Zumwalt North Invitational on Dec. 1, the Noel Women’s Invitational on Dec. 9, the Blair Oaks Tournament on Dec. 13, the Fort Zumwalt East Tournament on Dec. 15-16, the Wonder Woman Tournament on Dec. 27-28, will host the Capital City Girls Tournament on Jan. 5 and will go to the Willard Tournament on Jan. 13.
“It’s tough competition and the girls look forward to it,” Werdehausen said. “… We’re just looking forward to our first match. The girls are getting excited about that.”