(Editor's note: University of Providence media release)
GREAT FALLS – The University of Providence women's wrestling program announced the 2020-2021 recruiting class Friday morning.
The class consists of seven student-athletes, two of which join the program from Montana. One of the additions is a transfer student from Southwestern Oregon Community College and is the younger sister of Iverly Navarro.
"I am very excited for the group of young women we have coming in," head coach Carlene Sluberski said. "In this class we have a college All-American, a high school All-American and multiple state placers. With this talented class and our returners, we will make lot of strides in developing them to compete at the collegiate level. To top it off, they are a very strong academic class with big goals outside of wrestling."
The Argo women's wrestling program is hoping to build off a successful season, where its finished third at the Cascade Conference Tournament and ninth in the nation in the final wrestling poll.
"This class is only going to enhance the culture at UP and represent women's wrestling in a positive light," Sluberski said. "I believe that when you surround yourself with people that want to see you succeed, good things happen. I think there are a lot of great things to come from this group."
Betty Bear, Poplar
Bear will join the Argo program from Poplar High School, where she played volleyball and tennis alongside wrestling
Bear was on the Honor Roll for three years in high school. She plans to study psychology at Providence.
"Betty is a tough young lady that will serve as an example and leader in her community and the Argo family," Sluberski said. "We are thrilled to have Betty join our program."
Brooke Cicierski, Billings West
Cicierski joins the women's wrestling program from Billings West High School. On top of wrestling, she also ran track and field for the Golden Bears. She was the first Montana winner of the Tricia Saunders Award, which is given to one female wrestler in each state that holds high school women's wrestling.
Cicierski plans to study psychology at Providence.
"Brooke is a great addition to our women's wrestling program," Sluberski said. "As a Montanan, she is one of a handful of ladies that are leading the way for the younger generation of female wrestlers in the state. We are very excited that Brooke chose to continue her education and wrestling career at UP."
Ira Navarro, Lahaina, Hawaii
Navarro joins the Argo program as a transfer-student from Southwestern Oregon Community College in Coos Bay, Ore. As a Laker, she finished fifth at the Women's Collegiate Wrestling Association Championship and was named an All-American. She finished first at the Oregon Classic, first at the Spokane Collegiate Open and first at the Mike Clock Open.
Originally from Lahainaluna High School in Lahaina, Hawaii, Navarro had a decorated high school career. She was a two-time Hawaii state champion, a two-time Officials champion, and a two-time Pa'ani Challenge champion. She also ran track and field for the Lunas.
Navarro plans to study business administration at Providence.
"Ira comes to UP already having two years of collegiate wrestling experience under her belt," Sluberski said. "She has proven that she is a top competitor in the country after becoming a WCWA All-American last season. She will undoubtedly have an immediate impact as an Argo."
Genesis Rialmo, Yucca Valley, Calif.
Rialmo joins the program from Yucca Valley High School in Yucca Valley, Calif. She was named Desert Valley League MVP and earned a DVL individual championship. She also played soccer for the Trojans.
Rialmo was on the honor roll all four years of high school. She plans to study business administration at Providence.
"Genesis is a well-rounded individual who embodies UP and its mission very well," Sluberski said. "She is an exceptional student-athlete with big goals who will challenge those around her to be their best. Genesis will surely play a pivotal role in our success as a program because of her desire to be great."
Kaelyn Siason, Salinas, Calif.
Siason joins the program from Everett Alvarez High School in Salinas, Calif. She qualified twice for the California state championship and placed fourth as a senior, the highest finish a wrestler, male and female, has finished in her school's history. She is a two-time Central Coast Section champion and the inaugural 2020 Pacific Coast Athletic League champion. She was a two-time conference MVP and named first-team all-league twice. She was also a multi-sport athlete for the Eagles, playing volleyball and softball alongside wrestling.
Siason was named to the Honor Roll all four years of high school. She plans to study business administration at Providence.
"We are extremely excited to welcome Kaelyn to UP," Sluberski said. "Kaelyn comes from California which is recognized as one of the toughest, if not the toughest, states in the country for women's wrestling. Kaelyn will undoubtedly make an immediate impact on the mat and as a leader on the team."
Taci Tapia, Helper, Utah
Tapia joins the Argo team from Carbon High School in Helper, Utan. She was an accomplished high school wrestler, winning the Utah high school state championship and winning the Dolmhar All-Star Duals. Having also participated in track and field, she placed fifth in the long jump at Regionals and helped her team win a regional championship. She also placed third two years in a row at the Oklahoma City Marine Corps Folkstyle Nationals. She also played softball for the Rams.
Tapia plans to become a paralegal after her studies at Providence.
"We are pleased to welcome Taci to the Argo family," Sluberski said. "She is young but brings a lot of valuable experience with her. We are excited to add her to our room and look forward to her representing the Argos on the mat."
Heather Wallace, Sandpoint, Idaho
Wallace joins the Argo family from Sandpoint High School in Sandpoint, Idaho. She was multi-sport athlete for the Bulldogs, participating in track and cross country alongside wrestling. On the mat, she wrestled against the boys her sophomore year. As a senior, she finished first at the Idaho state championship. She also helped her team to a third-place finish in cross country as a sophomore.
Wallace plans to study addictions counseling at Providence.
"I had the opportunity to meet and work with Heather at an intensive wrestling camp last summer," Sluberski said. "I knew that she was a wrestler that I wanted to coach when I saw her work ethic and attitude unfazed by anything at camp that week. Heather has a lot of hard-to-find qualities that will help her develop into a successful collegiate wrestler. We are very excited for Heather to join the Argo family."