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Pride’s Ontiveros to continue wrestling, academic career at Menlo College
Alana Ontiveros signing
Pitman High wrestler Alana Ontiveros was joined by her parents on Monday as she signed her letter of intent to attend and compete at Menlo College (CHRISTOPHER CORREA/The Journal).

Pitman High wrestler Alana Ontiveros will look to continue blazing her path in the wrestling world as she signed her National Letter of Intent to continue her athletic and academic careers at Menlo College.

Ontiveros was a member of the Pride’s third-place team at the 2020 State tournament. Individually, she earned first-place at the 2021 California Invitational and a third-place finish at the 2022 State tournament. She is currently the No.2 ranked female wrestler at 143 pounds by

“It’s always special when we have someone sign, but Alana has had so much thrown at her, from injuries to all different kinds of things, so I feel like this one is super special, considering how much she has had to fight and persevere” said Pitman head wrestling coach Adam Vasconcellos. “She’s going to be a super special college athlete.”

Ontiveros explained that Vasconcellos has been an integral part of her being able to sign to a college, sharing his emphasis on good grades. In fact, in her four years at Pitman, she has maintained a career GPA of over 3.5. She hopes to major in Business Administration at Menlo.

Assistant coach Cody Vasconcellos also offered praise for Ontiveros, particularly highlighting her work ethic.

“Alana is very special to us and our program. We have never had a three-time State medalist in school history, and Alana is going for her third this year,” said assistant coach Cody Vasconcellos. “I’ve truly been blessed to watch Alana grow up… Coaching her all these years has been one of the easiest tasks I’ve had as a coach. She’s always positive, very committed and always has that hardest-worker-in-the-room mentality.”

Ontiveros credits Cody for encouraging her to pursue her dreams of wrestling in college.

“Cody has probably been the biggest push for me a lot to wrestle in college, and I think if I didn’t have that push, I wouldn’t be where I am today,” she said. “He instilled in me when I was younger that I could do whatever I put my mind to.

Fellow assistant coach and Vasconcellos brother, Matthew, shared similar sentiments regarding Ontiveros’ determination, making the bold prediction that she will reach the pinnacle of collegiate wrestling.

“I’m so happy for her and blessed to be a part of her journey,” he said. “I know everyone else feels the same way. We lover her, but she’s not going anywhere, just down the road a little bit. You can just take the train station up there, so that makes me feel piece of mind. But it’s our job as a coaching staff to make sure she puts in the work to gives herself that opportunity to leave for bigger and better things, and I know if she replicates what she has done at Pitman, no doubt in my mind that she’ll be an All-American and become a champion at the next level.”

“I couldn’t have done this without my parents and them taking me everywhere, my siblings for always being there for me, my brothers for wrestling me throwing me and not letting me get up and just tacking me,” Ontiveros joked. “Also, my grandma for always texting me and checking in on how I’m doing, and my teammates, because I don’t know what I could do without my teammates, always pushing me to another level. It’s great to have everyone who has been a part of the journey here supporting me.”