Alberni District Secondary School wrestler Jordon Bodnar is the first female to win five consecutive BC high school wrestling titles.
But with high school graduation around the corner Bodnar declined a tryout out for Team Canada, choosing to concentrate on academics instead, her coach James Messenger said.
Bodnar is competitive and would likely have medalled at the nationals, Messenger said. “However, she is not sure about competing in wrestling beyond high school. She decided to spend the time to focus on school and other things,” he said. “We hope to have her involved as a coach next season.”
Bodnar won her fifth straight title, this one in the 43-kilogram division, in February at the BC High School Championships, which were held in Duncan.
What made Bodnar’s feat more notable is that she didn’t have so much as one point scored against her during the tourney, something akin to a hockey shutout. “It was one of the most incredible feelings I have ever had,” Bodnar said. “It was pretty cool.”
The accomplishment capped off not just a high school career, but a teen life spent in wrestling.
Bodnar has been a fixture in the Port Alberni wrestling scene since she was in Grade 6.
“My stepfather Russell is a coach and he used to take me to wrestling practices when I was a kid. I was always around it and when I got older I wanted to wrestle,” Jordon said.
Bodnar isn’t just a wrestler, she’s tried other sports as well. She’s been a forward in soccer, a softball catcher and competed as a long distance runner in track and field.
But wrestling remained her first love.
Bodnar is another in an assembly line of strong female wrestlers that Port Alberni has produced, like Brianne Charles, Savannah Toth and Ashley Cross.
The wrestling season is longer than that of other sports, giving team members plenty of time to bond. “The whole team is like a family,” said Bodnar.
With the end of Grade 12 near, Bodnar has been preparing for what comes next after high school.
Her favourite courses are math and PE, but she’s maintained an interest in electronics ever since being sparked by the subject in Grade 9 science.
“I thought it was neat the way things fit together and worked,” she said.
Bodnar has set her sights on going to UVic or Camosun College where she wants to study to become an electrician, she said.
Bodnar has come a long way since tagging along with her stepfather to practices. “It’s just hard to believe that it’s almost over now,” she said.