Pennsylvania has a strong reputation for wrestling, and the Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association (PIAA) has been looking for ways to expand opportunities for young people.

On Wednesday, the board for the PIAA met for its annual board meeting. On the third and final reading, the board unanimously voted to accept girls wrestling as a sport.

This means the PIAA is taking jurisdiction of girls wrestling and is going to host a championship event next spring.

There are 108 to 118 schools across the commonwealth sponsoring wrestling as a sport and this goes into effect on July 1.

“The rationale behind that is to make sure that it’s something that has standing. That it’s not something that is just a fly-by-night or a trend, and we want to have activities or athletics that will be supported by the membership for years to come,” said Dr. Robert A. Lombardi, executive director of the PIAA.

Lombardi added this has been about two years in the making.