COLUMBUS, Ohio — The Ohio High School Athletic Association will be adding girls wrestling and boys volleyball as sanctioned varsity sports for the 2022-23 school year.
The board of directors voted unanimously to add both sports on Thursday.
The Ohio High School Wrestling Coaches Association has been conducting a girls wrestling tournament since 2020 and the Ohio High School Boys Volleyball Association has been hosting a tournament since 1988.
“The OHSAA has been talking with the boys volleyball and girls wrestling leaders for several years and we are now in the position to bring these two sports into the OHSAA,” said OHSAA Executive Director Doug Ute. “This move will help those sports continue to grow and allow those student-athletes to compete for an OHSAA state championship. It gives more kids opportunities and that is the mission of the OHSAA.”
As emerging sports, girls wrestling and boys volleyball will be administered like the OHSAA’s current recognized sports but will have additional requirements that could lead to full sanctioning in the future.
“We will look to keep a very similar format for the girls wrestling and boys volleyball tournaments as what the coaches associations have been doing,” Ute said. “The girls wrestling state tournament is held in mid-February and the boys volleyball state tournament is held in the spring. We have not yet developed tournament regulations, but we’ll start working on that so that those two sports hit the ground running next fall for the start of the 2022-23 school year.”
With the addition of girls wrestling and boys volleyball, the number of OHSAA sports grows to 28, with 14 for girls and 14 for boys.
In addition, the board voted to move girls and boys lacrosse from the emerging sports category into the list of recognized sports. The OHSAA added lacrosse in 2016.
OHSAA said they will also discuss partnering with a group to provide a tournament in Esports, similar to how the organization partnered with Varsity Spirit for its sideline cheerleading competition that was held in December for the first time.