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Shawnee County women's wrestlers making mark in new sport

By RICK PETERSON

TopSports.news

EDITOR'S NOTE: Over the coming weeks, TopSports.news will recognize hundreds of Shawnee County's all-time greats in 25 sports/categories as part of our Best of the Best project. Readers will have the opportunity to vote through July, with the Top 25 in all categories announced in August. To cast a vote for the Best of the Best, click on: https://linkto.run/p/7NGNFB5LEmail votes/nominations will also be accepted at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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Women's wrestling is relatively new in Kansas at the high school and college level, but Shawnee County wrestlers have already made their mark in the sport.

Washburn Rural has won the state team championship both seasons since the Kansas State High School Activities Association made women's wrestling an official sport while Shawnee County competitors have already captured four individual titles.

Recent Rural grad Dajia Anderson won state titles in both her state appearances while her teammate, Rebekah Smith, added her first state crown as a senior after placing third as a junior.

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Rebekah SmithnewRebekah Smith

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Rossville's Kendra Hurla, meanwhile, started her prep career off with a bang, winning a Division II state title as a freshman this past season.

Several other local athletes established themselves at the collegiate level without having the opportunity to compete for their high school, including Marissa Patterson (Shawnee Heights), Valeria Rivera (Seaman) and Ashley and Lacey Henderson (Washburn Rural).

Seaman's Rylee Murray was named the Centennial League outstanding women's wrestler this past season while Topeka West's Brianna Randles won that honor in 2020.

There are 20 candidates listed to pick from at https://linkto.run/p/7NGNFB5L while readers are encouraged to write in the names of their favorites.

Vote as many times as you wish, with the only requirement that eligible candidates must have grown up in Shawnee County or attended one of the county's 10 high schools.

Final selections will be based on reader vote as well as input from TSN contributors and current and past local sports media professionals.   

Votes will be accepted through July 31 before TSN publishes our Best of the Best lists in August.

NEXT UP: At large candidates.

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