3 young female wrestlers dominate mat at Chicago high school

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Three girls on the Lake View High School wrestling team are dominating the mat in a male-dominated sport.

Girls' interest in wrestling has grown in popularity over the last decade, which means that "wrestling like a girl" could be viewed as a compliment.

"I would take it as a compliment because girls can do the same things that guys do and I've proved it," said wrestler Vanessa Munoz.

Munoz along with Daniela Garcia and Dulces Reyes are three girls who won varsity matches wrestling against the boys.

"Guys don't expect to see a girl on a wrestling team, so just being the unexpected, to me, is the best part," Munoz said.

Garcia said the beauty of the sports is that she can show that she can defend herself against the boys.

"Before I did this, I could have told a girl, 'Oh yeah, you could do anything.' But what was I going to base that off of. Now, I can let them know, 'Look, this is what I did, this is possible, you can do it too,'" Reyes said.

Their coach said the girls are impressive, and even people in the stands who don't know anything about wrestling will stand up and cheer for the girls.

"They have to work so hard to get wins out of this sport, but when they do it it's a tremendous accomplishment. If you know the sports, it's hard not to be impressed by them," said wrestling coach Vince Camacho.

The Wildcats wrestling teams also has 12 boys, who the girls say support them and treat them like family.

"Honestly if I knew it was going to be this great, that they were going to treat me like this, I would have joined freshman year," Munoz said.

The girls said the experience has changed their perspective on everything.

"I want girls to realize that anything is possible. If I can do it, you can do it," Garcia said.
Copyright © 2021 WLS-TV. All Rights Reserved.