Wrestling has taken Bow’s Skylar Hattendorf all over the world.
Her most recent stop was in Sofia, Bulgaria, where she won the silver medal after defeating Japan’s Ruka Natami in the 47-kilogram category of the Cadet World Championships on Aug. 1.
Hattendorf, who is a freshman at Bow High School, began the tournament with a decision win over Russia’s Alina Kasabieva and followed that up by pinning Estonia’s Maarja Plaser.
She began practicing judo at a young age in her native California and earned a trip to France to compete in her first international competition when she was 9 years old. After winning gold there, her parents decided to move to Rhode Island to be closer to Jimmy Pedro, a former world judo champion and U.S. Olympic coach who works out of Wakefield, Mass.
It was there that Hattendorf wrestled for the first time.
“Honestly, at first I didn’t really like wrestling,” she told the Concord Monitor. “I was really just doing it to help my judo, but as I got into it more and I met some people in the wrestling community and stuff like that. It really grew into a love for the sport and it’s my favorite sport now.”
By the time she was 12, Hattendorf was living in Goffstown and competing against adults. She finished second at the senior nationals in the 48-kilogram category that year and took off from there.
Hattendorf later went on to win the World Wrestling Girls’ High School Preseason Nationals and was named Outstanding Wrestler at the Nashua South Invitational for the 120-pound class. She also qualified for the world championship by finishing first in the 57-kilogram category at the Team USA trials in Irving, Texas.
She will travel to Kazakhstan in September, where she will compete at the International Judo Federation Cadet World Championships.
“I do know that the town of Bow and the whole New Hampshire wrestling community is proud of her,” Bow Coach Brock Hoffman told the Bow Times. “She’s got a lot of fans.”