Laurence Jackson, who last year won a state high school wrestling championship in the 115-pound class, moved a step closer to a second title Saturday.
The Santa Monica High School junior easily disposed of his challengers in the Southern Section Masters championships at Westminster High School to advance to the state championships in Stockton March 1-2.
Jackson, who added some bulk this season and moved up to the 129-pound class, has not lost a match in two seasons. His 11-2 victory over Jesse Singh of Cajon High in Saturday’s finals improved his career record to 79-0.
Jackson said his increased weight has made him a better wrestler.
“I have a lot more confidence this year with the extra weight,” he said. “It wasn’t that I went out and tried to gain weight, it was just a natural thing. I think it has actually helped me more mentally than physically.”
A total of 65 wrestlers in 13 weight classes qualified for the state meet Saturday.