MUKWONAGO, Wisc. — The bruise under Josie Stachowski's left eye is proof of the historic win she had during the the WIAA boys wrestling sectional competition.
"I think I got headbutted and kept wrestling. I walked off the stage and pointed it out and I was like oh," Stachowski said with a laugh.
At 16-years-old she is now the first girl ever to qualify for state in division I boys wrestling.
"The first thing I thought about was representing the town, representing Mukwonago wrestling," Stachowski said. "It was exciting. I was filled with emotions. I was expecting it, I was excited, I wanted it, but it was just very surreal."
Her coach, Jon Wierzbicki, said when the announcement about her history-making performance was made at the sectional competition, Stachowski received a standing ovation.
"She represents and just embodies the best of who we are as a program," Wierzbicki said.
Stachowski has been wrestling since she was in kindergarten. Her older brother was a wrestler, and she wanted to follow in his footsteps. But there weren't many other girls competing when she first started.
"Growing up it was mostly all males, there's wasn't a lot of females that did wrestle. It was maybe me and one other girl," Stachowski said.
Because of that, she's used to competing against the boys. According to her coach and her record, it's something she's really good at.
"Every match when she toes the line, I think a young man is doing a disservice if he takes her lightly, and if he does so, he might get a quick lesson in her high half nelson," Wierzbicki said.
Now, Stachowski says she sees nearly a dozen young girls competing in the youth league. Many of those girls now look up to her.
"It makes me want to work harder. To strive to be a better wrestler, a better person... It really feels special to have young girls look up to me," she said.
Stachowski will take the mat this Thursday during a historic state competition at the Kohl Center in Madison.