South Dakota becomes 25th state to sanction girls wrestling

Brent Nathaniel


PIERRE, S.D. ( — At their June meeting, the South Dakota High School Activities Association Board of Directors approved a second reading of a proposed girls division in wrestling.

Effective in 2020-21, the Girls Wrestling division will begin with one classification and four weight classes, divided up evenly based upon certification weights of the
competitors. The top 8 participants in each weight class, determined by TrackWrestling criteria, will qualify for the State Wrestling Tournament, with the Girls Division occurring alongside the boys division at the same event. Expansion of weight classes for the future will be determined by participation numbers.

When the board approved the first reading in April, we asked Assistant Executive Director of the SDHSAA John Krogstrand about the growth they have been seeing in girls wrestling:

Krogrstrand said the future of girls wrestling looks bright:

South Dakota becomes the 25th state to sanction girls wrestling, joining area states Colorado, Kansas, Missouri, Montana, and Nebraska.

In addition to Girls Wrestling, the SDHSAA Board of Directors also approved 2nd reading and final approvals of several other changes, including changing of start dates for practice in girls basketball and football, the approval of a Co-Ed Competitive Cheer division, a running clock rule in 11AAA and 11AA football, changes to State Meet qualification in Class A and B Track and Field, implementation of Javelin as a Track and Field event in Class AA, a three-day single site State Track and Field meet beginning in Spring 2022, an amended State Wrestling Tournament schedule beginning at the 2021 tournament, a one-year classification cycle in 2021-22, and other items.


(SDHSAA contributed to this report)