COLUMBUS — Rossford sophomore Noel Reinhart finished eighth in the 110-pound weight class at the girls state wrestling meet Sunday, which continues a standard at her school.
“Noel kind of keeps the tradition alive. We’ve had a state placer the last four years now and she is just a testament to hard work,” Rossford coach Dennis Recknagel said.
“The only reason this kid walks into wrestling and has so much success is of all the work she puts in every day, lifting,” Recknagel continued.
“She comes to practice and gives it everything she’s got every single day, and she’s going to continue to do that and she’s going to climb the podium.”
Reinhart went 2-2 at the state meet, held at the Schottenstein Center on the campus of Ohio State University Friday through Sunday, to finish the season 24-12.
Reinhart opened the state tournament with a 13-2 major decision over Shenandoah junior Brooke Farmer (19-7), but was pinned in the state quarterfinals in 3:06 by Brookville junior Molly Luebke (23-3).
In the consolation bracket, Reinhart won by a 6-4 sudden victory decision against Springfield sophomore Meadow Gomez (27-15), but was pinned in the match (1:14) for seventh place by New Richmond freshman Charley Jones (31-4).
Reinhart finished off three months of a grinding wrestling season that can challenge any athlete.
“Honestly, for the three months that I’ve been wrestling, it’s pretty great to be down here, just working hard and getting to be here is great, let alone placing is pretty awesome,” Reinhart said.
She’s glad the work put into a wrestling season has paid dividends, including the two wins at the state meet against some of the best female wrestlers in Ohio.
“I lift almost every day, coming to practice I’m ready, working hard,” Reinhart said. “Honestly, I just give it all I’ve got. I’m here, so I might as well put it all on the mat while I’m here.”
Reinhart follows a tradition last continued by Rossford state champion Zoe Hussar one year ago. Hussar now wrestles for Siena Heights University in Adrian, Michigan, and was at the state meet to support Reinhart.
“I was so proud of her, and she is hard on herself,” Hussar said. “She said, ‘Oh, I’m not doing very good and so forth,’ and I’m like, ‘Your wrestled for three months. That is fantastic. I think it’s awesome.”
When Hussar won the state title last year, the girls state meet was sponsored and conducted by the state coaches’ wrestling association.
This year, for the first time, it was sanctioned by the Ohio High School Athletic Association, the same body which sanctions the boys state tournament.
“It’s awesome,” Recknegal said. “Like I said, with Zoe we had opportunities to wrestle at the girls state, and it is amazing to finally give them the recognition and put them alongside the boys. That’s what they deserve.
“The opportunity is awesome for these girls, and I’d just love to see it continue growing.”
Zoe Hussar, the daughter of Rossford boys wrestling coach Randy Hussar and Melissa Hussar, was a girls state runner-up in 2020 and state placer in 2021 before winning the state title in 2022.
She is a 2021 U.S. Beach Wrestling Junior national champion and Junior World team member with a fifth-place finish at the Beach Wrestling Worlds. She followed that by winning a 2022 U.S. Beach Wrestling Senior national championship and continuing on as a World Team member.
During Siena Heights’ inaugural womens wrestling season, Hussar wrestled at 155. One of her biggest highlights this year was a pin in 36 seconds against Indiana Tech wrestler Erin Riggle, even though the No. 12-ranked Indiana Tech team defeated Siena Heights, 29-15.
“It’s been a rocky year, but other than that I’ve made some great bonds with some girls that I never would have met without it, so I’m really grateful for that,” Hussar said.