The 2019 Female Athletes of the Year for Franklin High School were school trailblazers on the mat.
Annalise Dodson and Isabella “Bella” Campbell became Franklin’s first two girls wrestlers this winter. Both found instant success in the sport, with Dodson a finalist for Female Wrestler of the Year at the county’s WillCo Awards.
“It’s awesome, a huge milestone to allow females to be a part of the wrestling program,” former Franklin wrestling head coach Tucker Cathey told the Home Page in a feature on the two athletes. “It’s huge for Franklin from a historical perspective, given our program’s legacy in middle Tennessee.
“For Annalise and Bella to be able to say they’re the first to compete—and win—is pretty incredible given this school’s longtime standing in the sport.”
Dodson spoke to her and Campbell’s growth in wrestling during their first season competing.
“We’re the first two chicks to do this here, and it’s just been a lot of fun,” she said. “We’ve talked a lot this past week-and-a-half. I had no clue what I was doing when I signed up to wrestle and to be honest I still have no clue.
“But it’s OK, we’re chugging along and figuring things out. It’s a lot of fun. I can see us going far in wrestling. We’ve already grown so much.”
Photo courtesy of Michelle Palk.