BILLINGS — Billings Senior’s Rylee Kogolshak is trying to follow in her father’s footsteps.
Rylee’s dad Billy was a two-time state champion wrestler in his days at Hardin, and it’s a passion he’s passed down to his daughter.
“We talk about sports a lot. That's a big factor in our lives," Kogolshak said. "He's always recording my matches, telling me what to do better. We always work on things on the mat and everything."
Rylee is a jack of all trades athletically, though.
Before transferring to Senior prior to her junior year, Kogolshak was a state champion swimmer for the Bulldogs. Rylee added on to her accomplishments this fall when she helped the Broncs win the State AA volleyball title, and she was in turn named Montana’s Gatorade volleyball player of the year.
She’s hung up the swimming suit for the wrestling singlet, though, as she searches for yet another state title.
“I always wanted to wrestle when I was a little kid, but I didn't want to be the only girl. When I moved up to Senior I figured it was my opportunity," Kogolshak said.
Kogolshak finished third last year at state wrestling but has aspirations to stand atop the podium this season. It certainly helps that she’s had one of the best practice partners in the state in two-time state champion Kendal Tucker.
“She's really improved, and she really has a drive and work ethic to be the best she can be. She always works hard — in the weight room, on the mat. No matter where we are, she's working hard," Tucker said. "It gets bad. We get really mad at each other. It's tough, so we fight each other really hard. We get mad but we keep pushing."
Kogolshak is hoping she has a state wrestling title to show off to her dad when she walks out of First Interstate Arena next weekend.