PASO ROBLES — Paso Robles Joint Unified School District hosted its annual elementary wrestling district championships this past Saturday at Paso Robles High School. All six elementary schools participated with 165 students in grades three through five taking part in the championship tournament.
The championship event was organized by PRJUSD Athletic Director Rich Clayton, PRHS Athletic Director Anthony Morales and the PRHS wrestling staff and athletes who manned the score table and officiated the matches. The Bearcat staff has collaborated with both the elementary and middle school wrestling coaches to align their programs in terms of
“It’s exciting to see the high school coaches and athletes working with our elementary kids,” Clayton said. “The work being done with our future Bearcats will help produce high school athletes that are more skilled, have a better mindset, and are prepared for competition at the highest level.”
PRJUSD is the only district in the county that offers elementary athletic competition. The program, in its third year, began this school year with boys and girls cross country and girls volleyball in the fall. Wrestling will be followed by girls and boys basketball in January. The school year will end with track and field and soccer. All elementary sports are free for students including transportation to and from the games.
Paso Robles Head Wrestling Coach Azevedo said of the program, “I’ve been around the country and it is not like that everywhere. Not everyone has the school system to support it, so it is unique in some ways. When you have those kids and they have the opportunity and find out about wrestling... I always have parents come up to me and tell me how much their son loves wrestling and otherwise they might not have had that chance.”
Azevedo said his favorite part of the event was, “I think, just in general, the focus of those little guys and the way they competed. You saw the tears and you saw the joy also, so it was just, you know, the whole experience for the kids. The ups and downs and the excitement, you can just see kids having fun and competing and getting better and coaches hugging kids and telling them
Students who placed first, second or third at the district wrestling championships each received medals and a championship T-shirt. Team winners for boys and girls also received T-shirts and a plaque. Results are as follows:
Girls’ Team Champion: Kermit King Elementary
Boys’ Team Champion: Pat Butler Elementary
Individual Medalists (Boys):
Individual Medalists (Girls):