The First All-Girls Varsity Wrestling Team in New York Isn't Focused on Making History
March 06, 2020


That's just a byproduct of doing it for the love of the sport.

It’s Valentine’s Day morning, and the group chat of the Bay Shore varsity all-girls wrestling team is blowing up. Members of the inaugural squad are sending funny GIFs back and forth, in the jovial spirit of the holiday, before (and OK, probably during) school. But in the afternoon, as the team trickles into their practice room, located in the basement of a local elementary school, one member is distraught.

“A little kid lost their Valentine’s Day card!” Moura, 13, cries to her coach, and anyone else who will listen. She found the wayward card on a staircase and can only imagine how sad the kid must be at this very moment, frantically looking for their precious love token.

“Moura, it’s OK,” her coach, Amber Atkins, 27, says sternly. “Focus.”

And just like that, Moura shifts her gaze from her coach to the mat. She’s ready to wrestle.