UNION CITY, Mich. — A Union City wrestling coach is paving the way for other women in the industry, recently being named head coach for the district's middle school team.
It's been seven years since Angelica Iobe was a student at Union City Middle School, and now she's returning as the head wrestling coach. This makes history as the only woman coach in the 'Big Eight' Conference.
"I’m hoping that me as a coach can make girls say ‘Hey if she can coach, I can wrestle’," said Union City Middle School's Head Wrestling Coach Angelica Iobe.
She said it feels normal to her being in it almost her whole life.
"I helped coach the high school team last year. Me and the coaches had talked about our middle school program and how to make it better. Then, it just kind of fell into place," said Iobe.
Iobe started wrestling when she was just four years old, following in the steps of her dad and uncles.
While it's traditionally boys who are involved in the sport, she said she is hoping to become a role model for some of the girls who might be interested too.
"I know a lot of parents aren’t too big on girls wrestling, but it has made me a stronger woman. It has got me to where I am at today, so I would definitely recommend it," said Iobe.
While sign-ups for the team are still taking place, Iobe is ready to focus on the fundamentals.
"One of the things that we are really going to focus on is basics. That is something that the high school coach and I have really talked about. When freshman come up, they don’t know too much sometimes. We are going to focus on basics and things they’ll need for their high school career," said Iobe.
Iobe said the team will also work with the high school wrestling team if needed to ensure each team member has a good partner to practice with.
"This season is cut little bit short due to the circumstances. We are going to have a short season. It is going to be about five meets. We won’t see as big of results as we would in a normal season so just hang in there with us and the team, and hopefully next year will be a little bit better," said Iobe.
Iobe is scheduled to coach her first practice this upcoming Monday and her first match in two weeks.