Wrestling season at a glance

Making history

This season, all 14 Falcons on the varsity roster contributed to the most successful season in school history. According to Mike Bigrigg, they finished with five wrestlers in the top eight of San Diego, with an overall record of 14-2 in dual meets. For the Masters Wrestling Championship, 11 TPHS wrestlers attended day one, and four attended day two — the most in school history, according to junior varsity Head Coach Paulo Dominice. 

Another notable achievement this season was clinching the Orange Glen High School Memorial tournament and Glendora High School Thanksgiving Throwdown title earlier this year. 

In light of this success, Bigrigg and Dominice emphasized how every individual on the team was a crucial component of making this season memorable. 

“[They] go out on that mat by themselves, but [they] represent a team,” Dominice said. 

Together stronger

Prior to the TPHS wrestling season, the program was able to deepen their connection to local wrestlers through the Del Mar Wrestling Camp, according to Team Captain Kaisen Umali (12). This connection strengthened throughout the season, Ruby Julien-Newsom (11) said, in part thanks to 5 a.m. wake-ups on match days, which sometimes last until 8 p.m. While these days were long and exhausting, Julien-Newsom said they were “really fun” because “you get to cheer each other on.”

Bigrigg for the win

Last season, Mike Bigrigg joined the TPHS wrestling coaching staff as the head varsity coach. Prior to coaching wrestling, Bigrigg attended the Naval Academy and later enlisted in the Marine Corps, where he continued to wrestle. 

“My whole goal is to get kids wrestling as much as possible and focus on getting them to learn life lessons that wrestling teaches, specifically focusing on the journey of wrestling and not just the wins and losses,” Bigrigg said. 

This year, TPHS wrestling as a whole has eight coaches, the most in the program’s history. According to Bigrigg, the expanded coaching staff, which has allowed for an expansion of practice space into two rooms in the Olive Garden, allows for more one-on-one time with the wrestlers. 

Team Captain Kaisen Umali (12) said this season offered him “the best learning experience at Torrey Pines.”

A force on the mat

Ruby Julien-Newsom (11) started wrestling for TPHS her sophomore season and quickly established herself as a dominant force on the mat. She is one of the four team captains on the varsity roster, and one of only five girls in the entire wrestling program. 

Julien-Newsom concluded the 2022-23 season with a total of 34 wins by pin, competing in both the girls and boys meets — a  “rare occurrence,” according to Mike Bigrigg, the head coach of the varsity team.

“Ruby is one of the best wrestlers in the state at her weight class. She is our starting boys 126 pounder, so when we wrestle in dual meets, she wrestles against boys, which is incredibly impressive,” Bigrigg said.

Previous post Local Black-owned businesses
Next post Mock Trial beats rival to advance to state competition