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Wasco kids join Taekwondo U.S. National Team

Tiger Taekwondo is producing World class martial artists
Taekwondo file
Posted at 7:58 AM, Mar 19, 2023

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KERO) — Two of the best Taekwondo competitors that are from Wasco are preparing to represent their country when they travel to the Dominican Republic next month for the Pan American Championships.

“I got into the sport from like seeing my uncle, and my brother, and my dad do it so like when I was little I thought it would be cool if I did it too,” said Taekwondo fighter Dylan Solorio.

Just like the other men in his family Dylan Solorio has embraced the sport of Taekwondo, and has actually exceeded expectations.

He competed in tournaments shortly after joining the sport, and decided to take it to a higher level which would earn him a spot on the Cadet National Team.

“I competed before that too. I was doing good, and after that I thought I could do better so I just moved up and started going higher and doing better at other tournaments,” said Solorio.

That level of competition is something that you will find in Wasco at Tigers Taekwondo where coach Brian Solorio is preparing his students to be the best in the sport.

Now he has two of the best competitors in the nation that stem from his gym.

“It makes me feel really proud, especially since we are in a small town, a rural town outside of Bakersfield here in Kern County. It's a pretty accomplishing feeling. Not only for myself but as the community as a whole because out of the entire United States two from this small studio here in this small town are able to compete at that level,” said Taekwondo Coach Brian Solorio.

One of his other students has also taken the sport by storm earning herself a spot on the Jr. United States National Team to compete alongside Solorio next month in the Pan American Championships.

“My first competition, I say it was a fun experience. It was more of just having fun rather than the competition, but as it goes on you start really taking it super seriously and it’s not all about competitions,” said Taekwondo fighter Kaitlyn Taberna.

The experience is exactly what Taekwondo competitor Kaitlyn Taberna loves about going to compete in Taekwondo tournaments.

“I would never imagine me traveling like across the world just for Taekwondo, but yeah doing all that stuff just traveling, seeing new experiences that would be my favorite part of Taekwondo,” said Taberna.

Taberna says the day that she stops competing she hopes to continue coaching kids in her hometown.

“I really hope that I get to accomplish all my goals which I will work really hard for, but after I experienced all that I wouldn’t want to just throw the sport down and live my life, I still want to come back to this and see all these little kids grow up and just be able to be part of their lives too like they are with mine right now,” said Taberna.

Just like Taberna, Solorio has big goals in the sport of Taekwondo.

“A few years into this I think I could make it far like making the U.S. Team again and maybe going to the Olympics,” said Solorio.

Both Solorio and Taberna will compete in the Dominican Republic starting April 25th, and the Tiger Taekwondo Team will compete in Nationals this July.