WRESTLE FOR THE NAME: Klein Senior Roberto Bautista Ready to Wrestle for State Title
THE BAUTISTA NAME IN THE WRESTLING WORLD IS ONE OF LEGEND.
Jesus Bautista was an All-American and then his son, Joaquin Bautista, was a State Champion wrestler in New Mexico at Santa Fe High School before going on to wrestle at the University of Minnesota.
Joaquin then had three children – Christina, Joaquin Jr. and then Roberto.
Christina, who is now an assistant wrestling coach at Cinco Ranch High School, won a State Championship at Colleyville Heritage High School and was a two-time All-American. Joaquin Jr. was a state runner-up at Cy Lakes High School and now wrestles at University of the Ozarks.
That leaves the baby of the family – Roberto.
“It’s been a family sport for generations,” the Klein High senior said. “He’s been one to carry on the legacy in our family and we hope to do the same thing. We knew we were going to wrestle. We were going to keep it in our family forever. We expect us to be the best family in Texas in wrestling.”
Joaquin added: “I started him in the little kids program. Because I was competing and training so much, that was my chance to spend time with him. I’ve been developing him since he was small for this.”
In his sophomore season at Klein High School, where dad is in his third year as the head wrestling coach, Roberto took fourth at State and last year finished as a State runner-up.
Going through the ups and downs of a dad-coach relationship can be hard sometimes, Joaquin said, but having dad as his coach is something Roberto wouldn’t change and vice versa.
“It’s tough but it’s also really good because he pushes me more and more every day and makes me the best I can be,” Roberto said. “Overall, he makes me a good wrestler.”
Joaquin added: “I wouldn’t change it for anything in the world. I know a lot of times coaches say, ‘I want my son or daughter to be coached by somebody else so they can be a regular kid’. I never wanted that. If I have the expertise, why put your kid’s career in someone else’s hands?”
Since that State title loss, Joaquin said Roberto has been working out non-stop to not only get back to that match but to be standing on top of the podium when it’s all said and done. “He’s the best one out of all of us at his age,” Joaquin said. “He’s way better than I was, which is the way it’s supposed to be. There’s a lot of pressure, he’s got to perform.”
But what we really want to know is – who wins on the mat between father and son?
“I could take him down every once in a while, but he’s got that old-man strength,” Roberto said.