PICKAWAY – Ave Miller is a wrestling sensation for Pickaway’s Teays Valley High School being the first girl wrestler to ever qualify for the state championship for wrestling at the school, but that was two years ago, in 2023 she just broke another first with an Ohio Sports History First.
This year OHSAA sanctioned a new girls’ state wrestling meet at the Shottenstein center. The event was hosted along with the boy’s tournament.
Two Pickaway County girls went to represent, Teays Valley Junior Ava Miller, and Freshman Madi Hamilton.
Miller ended up being paired up against West Union Scotly Adams in the first match of the event, and after 2 minutes and 52 seconds she won and became the first-ever winner at the OHSAA Girls Wrestling State Championship
When Miller was in grade school, her parents tried her in a ballet class. Her Parents watched as all the other girls stood in line and Ava leaped across the room as if she was dancing to her very own song. Even though she enjoyed it her parents said it wasn’t the exact fit for her.
After her parents introduced her to a host of other activities Ava settled into Brazilian Jiu-jitsu at Ronin Training Center, it was a fit. She entered her first tournament as a novice with the North American Grappling Association (NAGA) in May of 2016 at age 10 and won the first of many gold medals.
It wasn’t until 7th grade at Teays Valley West middle school she tried wrestling. She struggled a little with getting used to the rules of wrestling, used to working from her back or being able to use submissions like in Jiu-jitsu but still was able to place in several matches. Her relentless strive to be better Ava joined the Stieber Elite Wrestling Academy run by former 4 times NCAA national champion & World Champion Logan Stieber.
When she got a chance to start her high school season in 2021 as a Teays Valley Viking she was the lone girl on her team. She didn’t let that intimidate her.
Teays Valley Wrestling coach and history teacher, Todd Nace, says “Ava takes everything the boys throw at her. She works hard in practice, and the boys don’t take it easy on her. All of her hard work is certainly paying off with a number of firsts.”
Miller has been a history maker since starting in the sport, and it seems fitting that she will go down in History as the first at the OHSAA Championship, congrats Ava.