Trib HSSN 2024 girls wrestling all-stars: Canon-McMillan’s Valarie Solorio makes history

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Sunday, March 24, 2024 | 12:30 PM


Girls Wrestler of the Year

Valarie Solorio

Canon-McMillan, sr., 100 pounds

2023-24 record: 17-0; Career record: 117-5

Canon-McMillan senior Valarie Solorio likes to be first.

She collected a lot of firsts this season.

Being that this was the PIAA’s inaugural season of girls wrestling and that Solorio competes in the lightest weight class (100 pounds), she was naturally going to be a first in many things.

She was the first girl to win WPIAL, PIAA Western Regional and PIAA titles. She also is TribLive’s first Girls Wrestler of the Year.

“I fell in love with the sport while attending my brother’s practices,” Solorio said. “I decided to start wrestling and my parents had a rule that if you started something you don’t quit during the season. I didn’t realize I’d be that good.”

Solorio said she loved wrestling in front of big crowds. It will prepare her for when she wrestles for the University of Iowa next season.

Solorio’s senior season was hampered by a knee injury, but she healed enough to compete in the postseason.

After she pinned her opponent in the finals, she slapped the mat three times and then got up and blew kisses to the crowd.

“It was a reaction thing,” Solorio said. “I love blowing kisses. It was exciting to be the first champion. It’s something that will be never taken away from me.

“I’m honored to be the first Wrestler of the Year. I worked hard over the years and my hard work paid off.”

She also led Canon-McMillan’s team to the first PIAA girls team championship.

First team

Audrey Calgaro

Canon-McMillan, so., 170 pounds

2023-24 record: 26-5

The Big Macs sophomore finished third in the PIAA after winning the Western Regional title. She was the WPIAL runner-up.

Alaina Claassen

Plum, so., 235 pounds

2023-24 record: 20-2

The Mustangs sophomore finished sixth in the PIAA tournament after winning WPIAL and PIAA Western Regional titles.

Saphia Davis

Plum, so., 124 pounds

2023-24 record: 33-4

The Plum sophomore went 4-2 in the PIAA tournament and placed fourth. She was the WPIAL and West Regional champion.

Josephine Dollman

Norwin, so., 142 pounds

2023-24 record: 25-5

The Norwin sophomore placed fifth in the PIAA tournament. She was the WPIAL and Western Regional champion.

Asia Fowler

Woodland Hills, so., 130 pounds

2023-24 record: 26-9

The Woodland Hills sophomore placed sixth in the PIAA tournament. She was a PIAA Western Regional third-place finisher.

Ava Golding

Kiski Area, so., 136 pounds

2023-24 record: 31-5

The Kiski Area sophomore placed third in the PIAA tournament after winning WPIAL and Western Regional titles.

Miranda Lajevic

Knoch, jr., 100 pounds

2023-24 record: 31-12

The Knoch junior had a strong PIAA tournament performance. She went 5-1 and finished third.

Ana Malovich

Butler, sr., 118 pounds

2023-24 record: 18-1; Career record: 77-36

The Butler senior was a WPIAL champion and placed third in the first PIAA tournament.

Trinity Moore

Connellsville, so., 118 pounds

2023-24 record: 28-6

The Connellsville sophomore placed fifth at the PIAA tournament after winning WPIAL and PIAA Western Regional titles.

Leyna Rumpler

North Allegheny, sr., 155 pounds

2023-24 record: 35-2; Career record: 102-20

The North Allegheny senior finished second in the PIAA tournament after winning WPIAL and PIAA Western Regional titles.

Natalie Rush

Canon-McMillan, jr., 190 pounds

2023-24 record: 33-3; Career record: 89-8

The Big Macs junior placed second in the PIAA after winning WPIAL and PIAA Western Regional titles.

Haley Smarsh

Moon, fr., 130 pounds

2023-24 record: 28-1

The Tigers freshman placed second in the PIAA after winning a WPIAL title.

Kristen Walzer

Montour, so., 100 pounds

2023-24 record: 25-15

The Montour sophomore finished sixth in the PIAA tournament and was a WPIAL runner-up.

Paul Schofield is a TribLive reporter covering high school and college sports and local golf. He joined the Trib in 1995 after spending 15 years at the Daily Courier in Connellsville, where he served as sports editor for 14 years. He can be reached at pschofield@triblive.com.

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