Athlete of the Week: Hermelinda Mendoza

Photo by Dawnmarie Fehr

Name: Hermelinda Mendoza

School: Liberty High School

Sport: Wrestling

Year: Senior

Coach: Phil Freeman


Hermelinda Mendoza has wrestled for Liberty High School for the last four years. She began her wrestling career in middle school, after noticing her school’s team had no girls on it. 

“I thought it might be fun to try out,” she said. “I grew with it, and I struck with it.” 

With a background in boxing, Hermelinda brought strength and focus to the mat. During her high school career, she became a Greco state champion, state qualifier, a National team member, a Brittany David Invitational champion and her team’s captain. 

The 17-year-old Brentwood resident saw her final high school season cut short by the COVID-19 pandemic but is waiting patiently at home to pick up her college career in the fall. She said she is staying in shape with home workouts, healthy meals and plenty of water.

Future Plans:

Hermelinda has already signed on to wrestle for Ottawa University in Arizona. She is considering a major in biology and pursuing a career in forensic science. 

“I really like science,” she said. “It fascinates me.”

She chose Ottawa for its competitive women’s wrestling program and its location, admitting that she was looking to go to school out of state. She won’t be completely alone, though, as her cousin attends a neighboring Arizona school.

Coach’s Quote: 

“Hermelinda has had lots of success here in wrestling. Look for her to achieve even more on the next level.”