Three Polk County girl wrestlers competed in the “Eagle Challenge” at Edgewater High School in Orlando on Wednesday, Jan. 9.
Katie Germain, Nicole Acosta and Makayla Groth all turned in stellar performances and took home gold medals. There were nearly 90 girls competing at this event seen as a warm-up for the upcoming Florida Girls High School State Wrestling Championships scheduled for Jan. 26.
Katie Germain, a senior at George Jenkins High School and a three-time Florida state champion, continued to display her dominance. She went 4-0 with three pins and a technical fall (15 point advantage).
“What I liked most about Katie’s performance was the variety of moves she used,” said her father and coach Brian Germain of Summerlin Judo and Wrestling in Bartow. “She displayed a very balanced attack using both her adapted judo moves as well as traditional wrestling takedowns.”
“I feel ready to win my fourth state title,” remarked Katie after the tournament.
Katie is also currently weighing her options for wrestling in college. She is considering No. 1 ranked King College in Bristol, Tenn., and No. 3 ranked Lindenwood University just outside of St. Louis.
Nicole Acosta, a junior at Haines City High School, showed a lot of improvement over last year with a dominate 3-0, three-pin performance.
“I was very impressed with Nicole’s improvement,” stated Germain. “She has really developed her technique over last season.”
Nicole is also a high school honor student contemplating an early graduation.
“Nicole is the complete package” said Germain. “She is extremely bright and very tough. She is one of the nicest girls you will ever meet until you get her on the mat.”
Makayla Groth, a sophomore at Auburndale High School, displayed her dominance with a 4-0 performance that included 2 pins.
“I really enjoyed watching Makayla wrestle,” remarked Germain. “Gilbert Jones and Vince Parker have done an outstanding job with Makayla. Their whole program has really begun to shine this year. Makayla took fifth at last year’s state championships but as good as she looked tonight I can’t see her walking away with nothing less than gold at this year’s states. I know Gilbert and Vince will have her ready.”
“It is events like this that showcase how girls’ wrestling continues to grow,” explained Germain. “Ever since 2004, when women’s freestyle wrestling was introduced into the Olympics, girl wrestling has enjoyed strong growth. The number of participants in high school events, the number of female collegiate programs, and the overall level of wrestling has improved dramatically. I’m sure you will see more of our Polk County girls wrestling at the next level in coming years.”