Skip to main content

West Jordan Journal

Inspired by brother, West Jordan’s Robison begins successful wrestling career

Jan 05, 2024 01:38PM ● By Josh McFadden

West Jordan senior Tiana Robison (with the pink shoes on the right) is one of the Jaguars’ top wrestlers this season. With the support and urging of family, she began wrestling as a sophomore. (Photo courtesy of Matthew Lloyd)

Not all that long ago, high school girls had limited opportunities to wrestle competitively. That began to change in 2020 when the Utah High School Activities Association sanctioned girls wrestling. This decision gave young women such as West Jordan High School’s Tiana Robison the chance to get into the sport. 

But even with this significant change, had it not been for her brother, Robison may never have stepped onto the mat. 

Robison is currently a senior and a captain for the West Jordan girls squad. She is a team leader and has had great success in her three years as a Jaguar. Head coach Matthew Lloyd loves her work ethic and thinks she has tremendous potential. 

“She wrestled amazing last year and looks to improve and be one of the best in the area,” he said. “She is a smart wrestler, tough and has the skill to go far in state, I believe.” 

Not bad for someone who is still fairly new to the sport. 

Robison was a sophomore the first time she started wrestling. She and Lloyd can largely thank her brother for getting her involved in the sport. She was reluctant at first. 

“I started my sophomore year because my brother did it and was doing it and wanted me to try,” Robison said. “He was a good wrestler, so he really wanted me to just give it one chance. I play football, but wrestling was a super intimidating sport. Watching him at matches and tournaments, I would've never thought that it would be something I would be interested in. It looked super hard and super confusing. But somehow my family convinced me to try it, and so I did.”

The uncertainty and trepidation of competing soon left, and Robison has fallen in love with wrestling. She loves competing and accomplishing goals after putting in hard work and a lot of effort. But what she loves the most is the camaraderie and family-like atmosphere of the West Jordan team. 

“First, what I love is the friends that you make doing the sport,” she said. “You get close friendships because you are with each other almost every single day. It starts to become a sort of family. I love having fun and being able to enjoy a sport with people I like. They become a motivating factor. But also, I love when you are able to see the work you put in is paying off. It's definitely a hard sport, and it definitely takes a lot, but it's great when you get to see improvement and everything you put in pays off.”

Robison sees herself as someone who can motivate and lift others. Despite the grueling nature of wrestling, she has fun, and she tries to make each practice, workout and match enjoyable for everyone on the team. She feels great satisfaction in seeing not only her only success but that of others on the team. 

“I feel as if I bring a motivating factor,” she said. “I love to see my teammates doing good and succeeding in wrestling. Seeing them happy in the sport and feeling proud in themselves is something I love to see. I also love that I am able to challenge them and make them know how good they really are. I also love to make practice fun. I love to make it a good time.”

Robison wants to improve her mindset and work on the mental aspect of competing. Wrestling can often be a mentally challenging sport, as the challenging nature of it can sometimes make people want to give up before they try. Regardless of where she places at state and how many matches she wins, Robison wants to end her senior year knowing she put 100% into everything she did. To achieve these goals will require a focused, dedicated effort from everyone, especially at practice. Perseverance will be critical. 

“This year I want to do my best,” she said. “I want to be able to put absolutely everything on the mat and only grow. I want to see the team do their absolute best and use everything they can. We need to work hard in and out of practice. We need to take practice seriously and use it as a time to get better. Practice is the place to make mistakes and learn from them. So, I want to see people push hard at practice and not quit.”

As Robison reflects on her time at West Jordan as a member of the Jaguars’ team, she will remember how much she has enjoyed being with the other girls, developing relationships and working together. Though the sport is demanding, she believes the team truly has had an overwhelmingly positive time together. She is also grateful for the support everyone gives one another and for the encouragement she gets from everyone involved with West Jordan girls wrestling. 

“This team knows how to have fun,” she said. “We are constantly laughing and making everything a fun time. I feel we have a really good team aspect. We are not just a sports team; we are friends, and I feel like that is super important. That includes managers, coaches, teammates and parents. We all just know how to be there for each other. I love to see them get better and have confidence in themselves.”

After high school, Robison said she may try wrestling in college, though it has not been something she has considered much. However, she does plan on applying the lessons she has learned from the sport into other activities and aspects of life. 

“I definitely want to take everything I've learned and use it for something else—something like [mixed martial arts] or any sport,” she said. “I want to see what else I can do with everything I've learned.” λ