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Lady Leopards host first girls dual wrestling meet

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The Hernando Girls Wrestling Team hosted their first-ever girls’ dual meet in school history on Wednesday, Jan. 25, 2023. The Bell Creek Panthers entered the Leopard’s Den to battle the number five-ranked Lady Leopards. The dual meet featured several matchups between top-ranked girls in the state.

With the popularity of The UFC and its female athletes and the sanctioning of girls wrestling in Florida, girls’ wrestling is here, and it’s growing fast. “It’s only going to grow, and my dream is to have 14 girls in the lineup, 14 girls in the opposing lineup and hold a  dual, and get more fans in the stands,” said Coach David Pritz, Hernando High School’s head wrestling Coach.

The Lady Leopards boast one of the top programs in Florida, which includes seven ranked girls. The lineup featured three Hernando girls that bumped up a weight class seeking tougher competition. The Lady Leopards secured a win and beat Bell Creek 42-18.  

Savanna Valle (100), ranked 5, secured a win by pin in the second period. Nathalia  Espinal (110), ranked 14, dominated her opponent and scored a first-period pin. Eva  Rice (125) won by forfeit. Daniela Espinal (130), ranked 7, bumped up a weight class and got her win by pin. Olivia Brown (145), ranked 11, took a win by pin in the second period. Mariah Earl (155) won by forfeit. Grace Leota (170), ranked 2, won by forfeit.

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