Making History: Cumberland High students compete for a state title

Published 12:47 am Tuesday, March 7, 2023

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CUMBERLAND – Sophia Crespo and Abbie Winslow now have a permanent spot in the Virginia history books. The two 10th graders from Cumberland High School competed in the state’s first Girls Wrestling State Championships.
Winslow went 2-2 during the competition, held Feb. 25-26 in Richmond, finishing in the Top 12. Crespo went 1-2, but regardless of the results, both girls said they were just excited to compete.
“I wasn’t really surprised,” Winslow said of being selected to compete. “I was (just) excited to go to a girls only championship.”
Crespo agreed.
“I was very excited,” Crespo said. “I was off my rocker excited to tell my mom!” 

The road to Richmond

This is all pretty new to Crespo, as she just started wrestling at the beginning of this sophomore season. She said it’s something she’s always wanted to do.
“I have three brothers, so I grew up always getting picked on,” Crespo said, adding that wrestling helps her give as good as she gets.
Outside of wrestling, Crespo said her favorite things to do consist of playing football, spending time with her little brother and doing activities with her six dogs. Crespo also notes that her mother is her best friend and she spends 90% of time outside school with her.
“My mom is my biggest motivator,” Crespo said. “(And I get) motivation from my team. It’s like a family. They’re always there for you, win or lose.”
After high school, Crespo plans to attend college and become a lawyer. The 16-year-old thanked her mom and coaches for being so supportive and keeping her motivated throughout the training and conditioning for the event.
“I’m very relentless,” Crespo said. “I don’t give up easily. I’m very motivated.” 

From Cumberland to Italy – or Japan

Winslow, on the other hand, began her wrestling journey in her freshman year at Cumberland High. She has always wanted to be involved in wrestling because of her close relationship with her brother, who made it to state a few times previously.
“I wanted to follow in his footsteps,” Winslow said, adding that she also doesn’t want to disappoint her teammates. “I always want to be the best.” 
With two sisters – one older with three children, and one younger – and an older brother with three children, Winslow undoubtedly has learned to have a teamwork-based spirit. 

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After graduation, Winslow plans on moving to either Italy or Japan and starting a business. Outside of wrestling and school, Winslow enjoys riding four-wheelers with her sister, and playing soccer. 

Winslow wants people to know that “I’m not the most talkative, and some people think I’m shy – but, I’m very confident and I believe in my abilities.” 

Winslow would like to thank her brother for showing her much of what she knows and has learned throughout her wrestling career. Her motto is, “it’s your life – live it!”

But before both girls leave high school, there’s still two more years of competitions, two more years of growing and developing as a team. For their first effort, they made it to the state championships. Both girls say they’re excited to see what happens next.