Baeza wins All-Star wrestling match


Isla Baeza won her match at the UVU All-Star Match. It was hosted at UCCU Center on Tuesday, January 10th. Coach Maren Stafford says that it’s a pretty elite thing. There are different divisions which the wrestlers are distributed in. Out of each division, each top wrestler is picked and continues on. Sometimes when two state wrestlers are in the same division they do a “Wild Card” pull and pick a few random wrestlers to continue on that were originally not picked. Baeza was one of these randomly picked wrestlers. 

Baeza started wrestling in her freshman year. “Maren came to my school. I’ve always loved doing sports. I always did cross country; I did track and field,” Baeza said. “Maren came to my PE class one day and she did a wrestling thing and then we did a sumo wrestling game, and I ended up getting super competitive. I’ve always been competitive and I beat everybody and then I was like ‘Oh maybe I’d be good at this.’ So I came to the wrestling room.” 

Baeza went up against Ayelen Grilli, a girl from Cedar High that she had already gone up against. Baeza went up against Grilli last year and sadly got pinned. Stafford doesn’t seem worried and seems to put quite a bit of faith in Baeza’s improvement, talent, and hard earned skills. “I know she did a lot of dumb stuff last year that would get her caught, so the fact that she got pinned in less than a minute by this girl last year doesn’t really surprise me ‘cause she did a lot of dumb crap last year. And it was at the beginning of last year,” Stafford says. “The chip on her shoulder came a little bit later, where she was like, ‘Okay I’m sick of getting worked over by people.’ Even this year she’s improved a ton, so it’s been really fun to watch. She’s got potential, she’ll be alright.”

It seems that even the team’s main manager Sarabella Felix agrees that Baeza has grown a lot. “I’m proud to see how far she’s come and grown as a human, or as a person I guess. I’m really glad to say she’s a close friend and I wouldn’t trade her for the world,” Felix said. “She’s a pretty good wrestler too.” 

Baeza was excited for the match and to wrestle. She said that she had trained hard and she’s confident in her own skills and that she’s done enough cardio as well as being solid at wrestling. All that’s left is to ensure her headspace stays good. 

In the match, she ended up winning by pin. A pin is when you put your opponent on his back with any part of both shoulders or both shoulder blades of your opponent in contact with the mat for two seconds. Baeza said she could feel the girl losing momentum in her own game and used that to her advantage. After the match, Baeza described the experience as awesome. She enjoyed the experience and said that it felt like being at the State Championships. Congratulations to Isla Baeza for winning her match at the UVU All Star Match.