Family bonds run deep in the Lebanon wrestling programs


By Pat Dailey (For

Unlike her older and younger brothers, Quincey Glendenning didn’t grow up dreaming of the day she would take to the mat in a Lebanon singlet.

While she was in grade school and even when she was in middle school, the Missouri State High Schools Activities Association didn’t sponsor girls wrestling.

“I never figured girls wrestling would come into play during my time in high school,” Glendenning said.

Likewise, Bailey Joiner didn’t anticipate being in multiple sports and wrestling once she entered high school.

“Growing up, I was not a very ‘sportsy’ girl, unless I was doing softball,” Joiner said. “Other than that, I didn’t do any other sports.”

That all changed once MSHSAA sponsored girls wrestling for the first time in the 2018-2019 school year.

Glendenning, Joiner and her younger sister, Jessa, along with Taylor Johnson were among the group of Lady Yellowjackets who were quick to gravitate to the mat, based largely on all of them having brothers who already wrestled.

Lebanon’s boys and girls teams this season include four sets of siblings totaling nine wrestlers. A total of five of them claimed championships at this past weekend’s Ozark Conference Tournament. The Joiners — Bailey, Jessa and their brother Davis — scored a trifecta by each capturing a title.

The Yellowjackets took the OC Tournament team championship for a sixth straight season and the Lady Jackets posted their fourth OC Tournament team title in as many years.

The success of Lebanon’s boys program has obviously led to the success of the Lebanon’s girls program. The Joiners, Glendenning and 130 OC champ Taylor Johnson all were introduced to wrestling due to their brothers.

“He started wrestling when he was 4 years old,” Johnson said of her twin brother, Taydem, who was second at 138 Saturday. “I want to be included, but we never had a girls team. As soon as we got a girls team, he drug me out there and we started wrestling. Ever since then, every summer we’ve been wrestling.”

She stuck with it, even though she didn’t take to it naturally.

“Not right away because I lost a lot at first,” Johnson said when asked if she initially liked wrestling. “So, it was kind of disappointing. But I kept wrestling over the summers and slowly started to improve.”

Bailey and Davis Joiner are also twins. Both Bailey and Jessa followed Davis’ lead by wrestling and winning.

“With my brother being awesome at wrestling, I wanted to wrestle really bad.” Bailey said. “Once he started wrestling, I thought it would be fun.”

“I started wrestling and then they wanted to see what it was about and they got into it,” Davis said. “They saw all the fun I was having and they wanted to join in. They were really good from the start.”

In the latest state rankings, Bailey (33-1) is ranked No. 2 at 135 pounds, Davis (31-8) No. 4 at 126 and Jessa (35-2) No. 5 at 135.

Glendenning, a senior, is 34-2 at 130, She won a state championship as a freshmen. Her older brother, graduated from Lebanon three years ago and their younger brother, Jax, is a freshman this season. He was third at 160 Saturday.

“My older brother got me into wrestling,” Quincey said. “When I was younger, I would go the meets. I was sitting around and was like, ‘I might as well start wrestling.’”

The Yellowjackets also feature brothers Jonathan and Micah Perryman. Jonathan was third at 120 Saturday.

The sisters have progressed to the point that now they can boast of the same success as their brothers. All of them figure their sibling rivalries has factored in their championships.

“Every single tournament, we critique each other for this and that,” Taylor said. “We take criticism from each other. It’s nice for me, to hear from someone who has wrestled twice as long as me. He can tell me what I need to improve on. It’s nice to have a person who can support you on and off the mat. But still as siblings, you want to say, ‘You are not better than me.’”

“There are seven kids in our family and we’re very big on supporting each other,” Davis said.

“Sometimes, (Davis) is really helpful and sometimes he’s a little hard on us,” Jessa said. “If I didn’t win, he would probably tease me about it.”

“It’s always a competition,” Bailey said. “We see who got the fastest takedown or fastest pin. I feel like it motivates us.”

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