By John Philip Wyllie
Bonita Vista wrestler Hector Arambula was a main cog in the Baron machine that for the second year in a row, grounded the Mesa League competition into submission. Grappling in the 152 pound weight class, Arambula amassed an impressive 30-2 record, finished first in league competition, took top honors in five tournaments and had one third place finish. He was the only Bonita Vista wrestler to return from last weekend’s tournament with a CIF title. This weekend, Arambula and five of his talented teammates have advanced to the Masters Tournament. A good showing there will carry them into the state competition slated for next weekend in Bakersfield.
Surprisingly, this is only Arambula’s second full year of wrestling.
“I started doing mixed martial arts during my freshman year and I got injured so, I wasn’t able to wrestle as a freshman. I started as a sophomore with coach (Gabe) Ruz (who represented Mexico in the 1972 Olympic Games). He has been there, so he knows what it takes to get there and he knows what it takes to be on top, so I can learn from that,” Arambula said.
Arambula came into the season in pretty good shape. In the fall he played linebacker for the Barons football team. He believes conditioning has been the key to his success.
“I like to incorporate my conditioning. That is where my main focus is. You can’t make moves without good conditioning. That has always been number one with me. When I am not wrestling I work out with boxing or kickboxing.”
While Arambula was born on this side of the border, his family originated in Mexico. During the summers he often travels there with his family. While some of his relatives are involved in martial arts and football, he is the first with an interest in wrestling.
“My parents are always there at my tournaments and they are always there to support me whether I win or lose. My mom used to worry about me getting hurt, but she has become better with that,” he said.
This weekend, Arambula will lead a contingent of Baron wrestlers that have qualified for the Masters Tournament. They include: Nick Barnes, Frank Bell, Hennessey Harrington, Bryan Roughton and Cody Lopez.