Los Altos fires wrestling coach midway through league season

Jim Thrall is out as wrestling coach at Los Altos High – fired with three dual meets left in his first season at the helm – and said he’s not sure what led to his dismissal Jan. 28.

“I wish I knew why,” the walk-on coach wrote in an email to the Town Crier. “Our momentum as a team was trending upward and we were coming together as a group quite well. The kids and parents are shocked, and the administration won’t tell me anything. It’s a total and complete shock.”

SF girls wrestling team grows to nine members, most in school history

Girls have long had the opportunity to join the St. Francis High wrestling team or participate in practice, according to head coach Todd Meulman, but they did not begin competing in meets until recent years.

Meulman noted that this year’s team includes nine girls – the most in school history – and they have their own schedule of meets that began last month.

Thrall returns to Los Altos High to run wrestling program

Although it could make for claustrophobic conditions in what Jim Thrall described as “the closet we call a wrestling room,” Los Altos High’s new coach hopes more students will join the team.

“We don’t have two full squads of varsity and JV boys,” he said. “I’d love to have more wrestlers in the 106(-pound) range and 270.”

MV's first female wrestler notches first victory


Nhiem Nguyen/Special to the Town Crier
Paris Harrell is all smiles after winning her first match Jan. 31.

Although Paris Harrell is the first and only girl to wrestle for Mountain View High, she doesn’t think of that when she’s on the mat.

“You are more focused on surviving during wrestling – and pushing your way through it – than you are actually focused on your opponent’s gender,” she said.

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