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Alina Antillon Exels In Class, On Mat

By Bill X. Barron, 06/11/18, 11:00PM MDT

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Alina Antillon (CO): Compete with Opponents and Self

By Bill X. Barron – RMN Events Writer

To know Alina Antillon, one must respect her precocious mental acuity as parallel to her dominant athletic talent. In addition to RMN championships and a top 3 finish at Body Bar, Alina recently accepted a scholarship to attend Mullen, a private academically challenging high school. Unusually articulate for an 8th grader, Alina will often read an unassigned English novel just to advance her knowledge. Her collegiate goal is to attend an Ivy League school on a full academic ride. Says Alina: "Academics have always been my top priority."

            In Alina’s perspective, “Wrestling has contributed to my success in the classroom and the school community by teaching me respect, responsibility, work ethic, accountability, self-control, and how to be a leader. All of these traits are things that have helped promote my successes in the classroom and in the school community, because they all help me get all of my work done the best that I possibly can.”

            Her mental toughness shows on the mat as well. Her recent high-level finish at the Body Bar Women’s National Championships did not come easily. Alina continued to compete and perform well despite breaking her nose just 30 seconds into her second match. Attributing her mental toughness to “hard training” with Sons of Thunder as well as lessons with Coach Thomas “Wildman” Denny, Alina says this experience “taught me that mental strength really does prevail over anything physical.” 

As a female competitor, Alina observes: “There may still be some people that believe girls don’t belong in the sport of wrestling, but it is a lot more common now than it ever has been in the past. I believe that there are several amazing opportunities that are opening up for women’s wrestling as a whole. Between girls wrestling becoming a sanctioned high school sport in Colorado soon and women’s Greco being added into the 2028 Olympics, I believe that women’s wrestling is only going to continue to grow and thrive.”

For herself, she adds: “I approach wrestling boys the same way that I approach wrestling girls. Either way, the main goal doesn’t change. Up until last season, wrestling was almost exactly the same, whether I wrestled a boy or a girl. The only difference now between the two is that boys usually have more upper body strength. For women’s wrestling overall, I think that we have broken through a lot of the challenges that we’ve had previously.”

            A multiple champion, Alina always looks forward to RMN Events, because not only are they highly competitive and “very challenging but also super enjoyable. The awards offered makes competing in RMN really rewarding.”

In her own words, “Wrestling has changed my life. It has taught me that life requires you to be strong, not just physically but mentally. It has also taught me that if you really want something, you must work for it, in order to be able to achieve it. Most importantly, wrestling has taught me that you have to do things yourself, rather than have them done for you by friends, coaches, or parents.”

She continues: “Wrestling has molded me into the person I am by continuously challenging me. All of the different challenges, both mentally and physically, have made me into the person that I am today. Wrestling builds character by always making you compete with your opponents and yourself at the same time.”