MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WBTW) – For Aria Bushaw, wrestling is not just a phase.
She grew up watching her father Brandon compete, a former wrestler for Michigan State.
It wasn’t until eight months ago, Aria decided to give competitive wrestling a try.
“I was all in,’ said Brandon, ‘[It] was like the third best day; when we had her, my son, and then she said she wanted to wrestle.”
Aria joined a youth wrestling team, called the Carolina Reapers. It’s a local program with only five girls on the roster.
“Growing the girls wrestling program is hard, because a lot of girls don’t want to wrestle,” said Aria.
Aria doesn’t mind, she still wrestles against the boys. She competes at 65 pounds, and has wrestled in well over 100 matches.
“I get nervous when I’m wrestling like some boys,’ says Aria, “But I’m not like awfully scared.”
Although she’s only in third grade, Aria hopes South Carolina will soon add girls’ high school wrestling.
“I think we need 18 schools that will commit to it with at least 5 girls,’ said Brandon, “So I think that will happen long before she’s in high school. But if it doesn’t boys beware.”