Div. II Bluefield State & Div. III Huntingdon Adds Women’s Wrestling
“We are thrilled and pleased to be able to offer Women’s Wrestling. It’s another opportunity for women to have a chance to compete on a national stage,” Derrick Price, the Director of Athletics, said.Bluefield State becomes the first Historically Black College to add women’s wrestling. The college is also the first Division II institution in the state to add women’s wrestling. As for DII schools, there are 13 other programs including Alderson Broaddus University, Colorado Mesa University, Davenport University, East Stroudsburg Unversity of Pennsylvania, Emmanuel College (GA), Gannon University, King University, Limestone University, Lincoln Memorial University, McKendree University, Northern Michigan University, Tiffin University, and William Jewell College.
In 2020, the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) named women’s wrestling to the emerging sports for all three divisions. At the high school level, 32 states have sanctioned high school girls’ wrestling state championships.
Some states, like West Virginia, do not yet sanction girls’ wrestling at the high school level. However, participation continues to climb.
The hunt for a coaching staff begins immediately with competition beginning in 2022-23.
Huntingdon College adds women’s wrestling
By Huntingdon College Athletics
Montgomery, Ala.-Huntingdon College Athletic Director Eric Levanda has announced the addition of Women’s Wrestling as the College’s 21st NCAA Division III intercollegiate sport, with competition set to begin in 2022-23. With the announcement, Huntingdon becomes the first college or university in Alabama to offer Women’s Wrestling as a competitive intercollegiate sport. Huntingdon Men’s Wrestling is currently the only collegiate wrestling program in Alabama.
“Women’s Wrestling is a growing sport both in our state and nationally, and I am excited that it is being added to our Athletic Department,” said Levanda. “The addition of Men’s Wrestling several years ago has been remarkably successful, and the addition of Women’s Wrestling solidifies our sponsorship of the sport as a whole. We are building on the leadership of Head Men’s Wrestling Coach Matt Oliver by naming him to the position of Director of Wrestling. The search for an assistant coach dedicated to the women’s program will be conducted in Spring, 2022.”
“I am grateful to everyone who has made the addition of Women’s Wrestling possible,” said Oliver, “including President West, Senior Vice President Dorman, and Athletic Director Levanda. We begin this new program with much excitement and positive expectation that it will quickly grow to be a vital part of the College’s expanding competitive intercollegiate athletic offerings. I am looking forward to providing the opportunity for women to compete collegiately in the sport of wrestling.”
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The NCAA announced Women’s Wrestling as an emerging sport in 2020, with 111 intercollegiate women’s programs currently sponsored nationally. Women’s High School Wrestling is sanctioned in 32 states.
Stay tuned for more information about Huntingdon College Women’s Wrestling. For schedules and rosters, visit https://www.huntingdonhawks.com.