Wisconsin Women at Fargo 2017
By Pat Kilty – WWF Women’s Director
“From Wisconsin” was a familiar sound at the Fargo Dome in 2016 and one that still brings to this day a great deal of pride and admiration to what the girls of 2016 accomplished. The ladies of Team Wisconsin left Fargo with a combined total in both divisions of 14 All Americans, 4 National titles, 3 runner-ups and the respect from around the country they so much deserved and earned.
To think that the majority of last year’s team entered Fargo with little freestyle experience and did what they did. What would happen if we emphasize freestyle more and provide more opportunities to do so? We are going to find out because that’s what we did and expectations for this year’s Team are very, very high.
This year’s team returns not only with freestyle experience but a team hungry to make a little history of their own. This year’s Fargo team consists of 12 All Americans, 6 finalists with 3 National Champs. Overall Team Wisconsin looks to be entering approximately 30 girls for this year’s tournament with podium potential up and down the list. The record of 14 All American’s from last year may be in jeopardy but that’s a good thing and expected with this group.
Topping out the list for this year’s Fargo Team are returning National champions Hannah Ramos, Jayden Laurent and Macey Kilty. This trio recently competed at World Team trials in Texas and will be representing Team USA at the Pan Ams. Jayden recently competed in the junior division in Lima, Peru and came away with the gold. Hannah and Macey will be in Buenos Aires, Argentina on July 8th hoping to follow suite in the Cadet division. These 3 will get the “from Wisconsin” sound going once again.
Joining Team Wisconsin this year is Alisha Howk. Alisha is a welcomed addition and brings with her an impressive resume. Alisha is a 2015 Fargo Cadet National champ and a 2016 Cadet runner-up. Alisha will be representing Team USA in September at Cadet Worlds in Athens Greece as a World Team member. A Junior National title at 112 could be the next title added to her resume.
Autumn Hohn returns this year up a weight class and as a returning Fargo runner-up. I expect to see Autumn on the podium in both divisions. If she’s up to the challenge the top of the podium is there for her taking in the cadet division.
After a runner-up finish in Fargo in 2015 Sarah Engedal approached 2016 with aspirations of making a World Team and winning a National title at Fargo. Something else had other plans for her. Leukemia. Sarah never lost sight of not ever being able to wrestle again. She was cleared to wrestle in 2017 and after a slow start as expected and getting back into what we all call wrestling shape the Sarah of 2015 has returned. I expect Sarah again to challenge for the top of the podium.
Our next 2 All Americans from last year are Natalie Kemp and Kiana Pugh. These 2 ladies started 2017 with their 1st Folkstyle National titles in OKC. They followed that up with both earning a spot on the podium at World Team Trials. Both ladies are expected to be challenging for the top spot in the Cadet Division as well as podium potential plus in the junior division.
The last of our All Americans from last year is Josie Bartishofski. No matter what the tournament is you will always find this girl battling for a spot on the podium. Fargo 2017 will be no different. I would not be surprised to see Josie contending at 106 as well as making noise in the junior division.
Returning for their 2nd trip to Fargo are Gabby Skidmore, Allie Grobarichik, Ashton Cadman, Rhianon Kuske and McKinley Verhulst. This group of ladies had the podium within their grasp but fell short. That isn’t happening this year. These girls have put the time in and expectations are nothing short of podium potential and beyond. Redemption is what these ladies are entering the Fargo dome to do.
The remainder of our Team Wisconsin ladies will be competing at Fargo for their 1st time. Every one of these ladies has the potential to become an All American. If History repeats itself, last year’s team did very well with the girls that competed at Fargo for the 1st time. I expect this group to continue that pattern.
The bar was raised by the ladies of 2016, records were set and some but not all goals were achieved. Last year’s team set the standard and expectations for future teams to follow. This year team will continue that tradition, raise that bar, set more records, reach new goals and represent Wisconsin Women’s Wrestling well doing so. The ladies of Wisconsin’s 2017 Team will enter the Fargo Dome as they left in 2016. Believing!!!!!
One Team, One goal, Make History