CSC Signs 21 Women’s Wrestlers For Next Year


Photo Courtesy/CMU Sports Information

Chadron State College Head Women’s Wrestling Coach Alijah Jeffery announced on Thursday his completed signing class of 2022. In addition to the seven returners, he added 21 newcomers from 10 different states to compete on the 2022-23 roster.

Some highly decorated athletes are among the signees, who boast several state and national titles.

The largest group comes from California. All five of them are high school wrestlers entering their freshman year of college at CSC.

Maria Arrelano of Fresno is a three-time state qualifier and state placer at 191 pounds for Roosevelt High. Kayley Garcia is a section champ and state qualifier at 152 for Vista High in San Diego. Leila Martin of Arroyo Grande is a 155-pound two-time state qualifier and a placer at the U23 World Team Trials. At the 109-pound class, Kacey Schafer is a state qualifier from Orange. Rounding out the group is Brianna Vollendroff of Oroville, a state qualifier at 101 pounds.

Three in the incoming class are in-state prospects.

Lila Bloomer of Callaway is a two-time state placer. Racquel Moore of Beatrice has a place showing at the Midwest Classic Nationals in Kearney. Meanwhile Shania Wear of Gothenburg was a finalist in Kearney, and an AAU state finalist as well.

Standing out among the recruits from Florida is two-time junior college national champion Heaven-Leigh Jackson of Brooksville, who anchored Jeffery’s Indian Hills Community College team to a national title in the team’s inaugural season. She will fill CSC’s 116-pound class. Jackson is joined by 101-pound state qualifier Abby Coullard of Ormond Beach and Alanis Soler of Orlando, who has a fourth-place finish under her belt at the state tournament and will also wrestle at 116.

A pair of Texans joins the program as well. They are Britley Lopez of Borger, a third-place winner at the 95-pound weight class, and Ana Rojas-Zamora, who was a state place-winner in Sparks, Nevada, before competing at 122 pounds on her coed team in the town of Clute.

Another JuCo national champ is 191-pound Sofia Rubio of Tempe, Arizona, who is another of Jeffery’s former pupils at IHCC. She is joined from her home state by Payton Kessler of Yuma, who placed third at her high school state meet and fits the 109-pound class.

A talented high school pair from Kansas are Isabel Ortiz of Lakin and Marissa Porsch of Hoxie. Both are state champs and multiple-time place winners. Ortiz was a finalist at Folkstyle Nationals at 116 pounds and is ranked No. 10 in the nation after a 34-1 senior campaign. Porsch projects at 143 pounds and she recently placed at the High School National Recruiting Showcase in Las Vegas.

The remaining four hail from Iowa, Missouri, New Mexico, and Wyoming.

Joining the Eagles from St. Charles, Iowa, Josephine Wearmouth is a freestyle state champion and a two-time state placer in high school. She will either wrestle 123 or 130.

Isa-Bella Mendoza of St. Joseph, Missouri is a place-winner in her home state, as well as a freestyle state finalist. She projects to compete at either 101 or 109.

Las Cruces, New Mexico’s Heavynne Robles-Wright is another featherweight who will likely compete at 109 pounds. She was the 2021 New Mexico state champ at 106.

Finally, wrapping up the class is Emma Crichton, the only female wrestler at Shoshoni, Wyoming. Competing at 160 in 2019 and 2020, she qualified for the boys’ state tournament both seasons. She also won Wyoming’s USA Wrestling girls’ state championship tournament.

Assuming all 21 remain on the roster, that brings CSC’s program up to 28 strong for the 2022-23 season, which will greatly improve the Eagles’ chances for the coming year at dual wins and national qualifiers.

The program fielded eight competitors in its inaugural season of 2021-22, qualifying four for nationals.

Jeffery may have additional funds to continue accepting new team members into the summer.