Besting All the Boys is The “American Way” – Spotlighting Our Youth
America Lopez has become the topic of a lot of conversation amongst the wrestling teams through out California. This Valencia freshman is a viral sensation because of her besting all the boys by winning the Thousand Oaks JV Tournament’s 196-pound boys division in wrestling 4-0. She was slotted for 196 by mistake; she was supposed to be in the 182-weight class and still took home so many victories. Her mom, Nohemi Sanchez, says, “I am so proud of her! I wanted to pull her out because that was too big of a difference, but when my daughter saw this, she just said (smiling) ‘we are here and let’s go through with it’ and that made me so much more proud of America.”
Lopez was introduced to the sport at the age of 11 while watching matches between her two older brothers at local gyms and training facilities. After much hesitation the coaches finally were able to convince her to join the gym. Being one of the few girls that train as a wrestler, Lopez would have to overcome ag-old thinking of “she’s just a girl” while competing. And that is exactly what she has done! Even before entering high school she held four state titles.
In the beginning, she would be one of two or three girl wrestlers. Now, she competes in tournaments of 20+ girls. Although starting off with much uncertainty, she finds great enjoyment wrestling with the boys. She hopes to participate in many more boy division tournaments. Lopez will be competing and will more than likely bring Valencia High School a State Championship. Look out boys here America comes!
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