The official site of the Torch, the student-run newspaper at Glenbrook North High School.


The official site of the Torch, the student-run newspaper at Glenbrook North High School.


The official site of the Torch, the student-run newspaper at Glenbrook North High School.


Wrestler finishes fourth in state

First female qualifier from GBN
Lara White
Freshman Ariella Dobin uses the half nelson move on her teammate, sophomore Zoe Handler. The girls wrestle with boys in practice, but this is the first year the girls have competed in all-girls tournaments.

After losing to an opponent from Lakes Community High School at sectionals, freshman Ariella Dobin had the opportunity to face her again at the IHSA Girls Wrestling State Finals.

“When I lost to her, it was a really bad feeling because she had really bad sportsmanship, and I hate losing to those types of people,” said Dobin. “They think it’s okay to act like that, but it made me more motivated to beat her at state.”

At the state match, neither Dobin nor her opponent scored in the first period, but Dobin took the lead in the second period and won 7-2.

“We’ve had a rivalry, and in that moment, I just wanted to win,” said Dobin. “I was really trying to gain confidence before the match, and it felt really good to beat her and get that revenge back.”

After competing in a total of six matches at the state finals, Dobin placed fourth for the girls 120-lbs. division, making her the first girl to qualify and place at state in school history. 

State is hard in a lot of ways because it is finality for some of the wrestlers, said John Gilchrist, head boys and girls wrestling coach.

“[Dobin] had one match, I remember, that made me sad as a coach because she beat a senior,” said Gilchrist. “[The senior opponent] was very emotional. We went to shake hands after the match, and she was just bawling because she lost. She was done.”

Dobin was incredibly focusedthis season and wrestled every match with a lot of intensity, Gilchrist said. 

“I think it was those factors that led her down to state,” said Gilchrist. “State is a different atmosphere. Everyone is good. Everyone is focused and pumped to be there. Sometimes I will take some wrestlers down to regionals, sectionals and state to see what that next level of intensity looks like.”

Girls wrestling was inducted into the IHSA two years ago, but girls began exclusively wrestling female opponents this year at Glenbrook North.

“There have been female wrestlers at GBN, but [they’ve] always been competing for the boys team,” said Gilchrist. “This is the first time GBN has had a girls team, and it’s been amazing watching it grow.”

The team is made up of senior Siena Dini, sophomore Zoe Handler and Dobin.

During school practices, Dobin demonstrates the wrestling experience she has acquired outside of school by showing her teammates moves the coaches have not taught them yet, Handler said.

“Whenever she picks people up and throws them to the mat, it’s so entertaining to watch,” said Handler. “Or whenever she’s on bottom and how she gets on top and does a reversal, I think it’s very cool to see that.” 

According to Dobin, she plans to continue to work hard to push herself to the next level.

“The goal is to become a state champion,” said Dobin. “I definitely want to win state some time in high school, and I am hoping to do it more than once.”

About the Contributor
Lara White, Sports Editor
Lara White (‘25) is a Sports Editor and has been a member of Torch since her sophomore year. Previous positions: Staff Writer (22-23).