2012 BULLETIN ALL-AREA GIRLS WRESTLING TEAM
• SARAH PHILLPS, EAST UNION: Phillips continued to decorate her impressive career for the Lancers wrestling program, earning her second consecutive CIF State Invitational berth.
• HAILEY OWENS, RIPON : Owens fought through injury in the CIF State Championships for a fifth-place medal and teamed up with Triplett to grab a top-6 team finish for Ripon High.
• ALYSSA CANTU, WESTON RANCH: Cantu improved on her impressive freshman season, earning a berth to the CIF State Championships with her top-4 finish in the ultra-competitive 165-pound SJS Regional as a sophomore.
• JAZMINE IVEY, LATHROP: Ivey impressed in her first season in competitive wrestling, putting together back-to-back wins in the SJS Regional to earn a berth into the CIF State Championships in the152-pound bracket.
• JESSICA MONTIEL, SIERRA: Montiel was one of the last wrestlers standing for her Sierra High program, just missing out on a berth into the CIF State Championships with a heart-breaking, one-point SJS Regional consolation semifinal loss.
— Jagada Chambers
It is one thing to follow the path and end the journey where so many before have traveled.
But paving a new trail and creating the standard for which others will strive is another.
The 2012 Bulletin’s All-Area Girls Wrestler of the Year Juliana Triplett achieved the latter.
Triplett, a Ripon High senior, put together a varsity wrestling career that will be the mark for all young female wrestlers to hope to realize. A year ago in the California Interscholastic Federation’s first-ever sanctioned girls state invitational, Triplett was one of 14 groundbreaking wrestlers to be crowned champion.
She finished off another 5-0 run this year for back-to-back state titles.
“There is always so much pressure when you get on the mat, but this year at state it was different,” Triplett said of her second state appearance at Lemoore High. “I don’t know why, but I’d get real jittery and nervous before the matches. But I learned a way to challenge it and use it. It was more intense because it’s my senior year, I won last year, my family was there watching and they didn’t get to come last year.
“So I really just didn’t want to disappoint anybody.”
It would be impossible to be disappointed with anything pertaining to the two-time state champ’s career, yet she was sure to leave the naysayers no room for talk. Triplett capped off a perfect 30-0 season with her second 165-pound title, cementing her name and legacy in the California wrestling community.
Triplett did not close out her decorated career with such dominance on accident. The technically sound, controlled aggressiveness Triplett displays on the mat is through years of fine tuning her craft. Even before slipping on a Ripon High singlet, Triplett was getting in work as a kid.
“The progression has been amazing,” Triplett said of her career. “When I look back on my videos I was so terrible. I stop and think I could have done this, or I could have done that, and now I see it.
“If I would have wrestled myself my freshman year now, I would have demolished me.”
Triplett not only left an impressive legacy for her name, but for that of the Ripon High wrestling program as well. Her success is a testament to what is going on in the head coach Glen White’s wrestling program.
“We may not go as physically taxing as like a Central Catholic or any of the other top programs, but our coach really focuses on technique,” Triplett said. “We drill it over and over and over. He seems to know exactly what to do. At the end of the season he does not want us to burn out and quit. He says every year at the end of the season kids are just done and they quit. So there are kids you couldn’t beat at the beginning of the year you can beat now.
“Our program is really good. Our coach knows what he is doing.”