SAN DIEGO — The wrestling season at Rancho Bernardo High School wraps up next month and Jaden Abas is looking to cap off his senior season with another state title. He’s one of the best wrestlers in the nation and his chances at another title look pretty good.
Abas stands out for many reasons, one of them being his breakdancing warmup routine.
“Just the body awareness and the core strength you need to be able to control momentum, it helps in wrestling a lot,” Abas said.
He learned the unusual technique from family. After all, wrestling runs in his DNA.
“It’s in my blood,” he said. “My uncle was an Olympic silver medalist in 2004, my dad was California’s first time for All-American.”
The senior quickly became a natural at the sport. Abas won the state title in the 138 weight class his junior year and decided to bulk up this season, competing in the 145 weight class.
“There’s not much of a difference,” said Abas. “If you’re one of the best wrestlers, you’re going to be one of the best wrestlers in any weight.”
“He’s a hard worker,” said wrestling coach Joe Terribilini. “He’s out there, one of the first one’s on the mat, he’s working hard the whole practice, he’s pushing himself everyday and he’s just unmatchable.”
Abas ranks first in the state for the 145 weight class and second in the nation with a 21-1 record this year.
“You have to be somewhat obsessed with wanting to be the best and wanting to get better and I think that’s part of the reason why I’ve been so good,” Abas said.
“He’s never content,” Terribilini said. “Always wants to be better, always wants to be the best and he shows it in everything he does — the classroom, the wrestling room, everything.”
His dedication to the mat directly parallels with academics. His 4.1 GPA earned him the opportunity to compete at the Division I level at Stanford.
“Looking back I did everything I wanted to achieve and the sky’s the limit next year and I’m confident that my high school career has prepared me for what comes next in college,” Abas said.
The only thing missing is another state title his senior year.