KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
November 6, 2021
By Natalie Cook Clark
Morton Ranch High School and the Katy community celebrated Olympic wrestling champion, Tamyra Mensah-Stock during Friday’s football game. On Monday, the 2011 Maverick alumnus will be honored at a school pep rally followed by a tailgate open to the community.
Tamyra Mensah-Stock and Tarkyia Mensah carried the school flags out ahead of the football team Friday night. Photo credit: MRHS
Morton Ranch High School alum, Tamyra Mensah-Stock won the gold medal in women’s wrestling at the 2020 (the games had been rescheduled due to the pandemic) Summer Olympic Games in Tokyo. Her interviews received national attention as the World fell in love with her passion, spirit and love for her Katy and Morton Ranch community.
Representing Morton Ranch
“She is so incredibly humble,” says Morton Ranch High School Principal Julie Hinson. “There’s no way for her to understand the impact that she had on our community when she said that she was from Morton Ranch.”
Mensah-Stock started wrestling at Morton Ranch High School her sophomore year at the suggestion of her twin sister, Tarkyia. Mensah-Stock had competed in track and field since junior high, so the sport of wrestling was new to her and she often complained that it wasn’t “pretty.”
It was during her first years of wrestling for the Mavericks that Mensah-Stock set her Olympic goals.
“I knew I could do it when I started wrestling,” said Tamyra Mensah-Stock after winning her gold medal in woman’s 68-kilogram wrestling. “I knew I could be an Olympic champ.”
The Morton Ranch family followed her Olympic matches. While school wasn’t yet in session (she won in August) when she competed in Japan, Coach Mark Balser would play her matches for the staff in the wrestling room.
"I am super proud as a Maverick, a Texan and an American that Tamyra Mensah Stock represented Morton Ranch High School, the state of Texas and our wonderful country in the manner that she did," says Coach Mark Balser. "In making the Olympic team and earning a gold medal she fulfilled a dream that started in our wrestling room years ago."
Mensah-Stock made history with her gold medal match. She was the first black woman to win the gold medal since the Olympics added the sport in 2004. She also represented her country with pride and dignity. Her interview after her gold medal match went viral. Watch it here.
“People saw someone who loves America,” says Hinson. “In a time of negative comments, she exudes positivity.”
After her win, the school art department made a replica of her gold medal for the school mascot to wear.
Mensah-Stock now lives in Colorado and has kept an intense training schedule since Tokyo. This is the first time she has been back to her hometown of Katy to celebrate the victory.
“Everyone can learn from her,” says Hinson. “She went through such tragedy and loss but with grit and perseverance she competed at the highest level.”
Mensah-Stock still grieves her father, who died in a car accident leaving one of her Morton Ranch High School matches.
“He would have been the loudest one here,” she told Olympic reporters after her win.
Mensah-Stock and her twin sister, Tarkyia Mensah were both honored during Friday’s Morton Ranch football game against Katy High School. They were both two of the athletes inducted in the Katy ISD 2020-2021 Sports Hall of Fame.
At the game, Mensah-Stock presented a $5,000 check from Academy Sports and Outdoors to the Morton Ranch Wrestling Team.
Mensah-Stock along with Academy Sports and Outdoors presents check to MRHS Wrestling Team. Photo credit: MRHS
Throughout her success, Mensah-Stock always remembers and pays tribute to school.
The celebration continues on Monday when she will be honored at a school pep rally at 2:00 p.m., in the Morton Ranch High School competition gym, followed by a tailgate party at 3:00 p.m. that is open to community.
“She is truly such an incredible example for our students, staff, and the community,” says Hinson.
The Maverick football team lost to the Katy Tigers, 66-15. However, the evening was a still a success to the school as they continue to honor one of their own.