Things have been pretty quiet around here since Junior Nationals. But I’ve got a couple meet recaps to share.
USAW Regional Championships 1
SCBC’s Matt Liao participated in the first ever USAW Regional meet in St. Louis, Missouri. Understand we’re using the term “regional” about as loosely as it can be applied. Unless the region we are talking about is North America. But it’s a step in the right direction and I hope these meets operate true to name in the future.
The first thing we did when we rolled into town Thursday evening was head by the venue at Union Station to register and check weight. Union Station was a rail terminal constructed in 1894 that has since been renovated and it turned out to be a pretty cool venue. Afterwards, we retired to the home of some friends from OKC who recently relocated to St. Louis (thanks Cody and Genise).
Liao was scheduled to lift in the last session Friday evening. So the next morning we checked weight once again and decided to take in downtown St. Louis. St. Louis is an old town with lots of interesting architecture. I thought the Arch was a bit over-rated, though.
When official weigh-in rolled around at 5pm, Liao checked in at 66.6kgs for the 69kg class. We had a post weigh-in meal at the Hard Rock Café in the old rail yard. Along with about 100 band kids on a field trip. Who all sang along to Uptown Funk at max volume as well as a few other current pop hits.
Shortly before 7pm we were in the warm-up area getting ready. Snatch warm-ups looked really good. We opened with an easy snatch at 85kgs which Matt nailed. My next call was for 92kgs, 1kg below his competition PR. Matt stuck this as well. From here we called 95kgs for the final attempt. Matt has snatched this weight once in training but he wasn’t able to get it on the competition platform. Strong pull but he came forward on his toes in the bottom and lost it behind.
For the Clean & Jerk we opened at 100kgs, which Matt made. Unfortunately, this put Matt in the precarious position of having to follow himself. No big deal, I know how to work the clock to squeeze out a few extra seconds. But the clock malfunctioned and the guy at the Marshall table was acting like a jerk so my strategy kinda got blown. I called 105kgs and bumped that up to 108kgs. Matt had a solid clean but the split was shallow which led to a press out on the jerk. No lift. We stuck with 108kgs for the third attempt and Matt dumped the clean forward.
We came into this meet in the rear of the field. Our goal was to go 95kgs/115kgs for a 210kgs total. We left with a 92kgs snatch, a 100kgs CJ, and a 192kgs total. Despite the disappointing performance we did appreciate being a part of the event and seeing some talented lifters, specifically, Alex Lee who won the 69kgs class with a 130kgs snatch, a 173kgs CJ, and a 303kgs total.
Lock and Load
The Lock and Load Championships was my first weightlifting meet years ago and since then it has become quite the event despite being held in a barn in the middle of nowhere. This year the meet was held over two days with approximately 120 lifters. Of those in attendance was SCBC’s +105kgs lifter, Justin Felderhoff.
We left OKC shortly before noon on Sunday en route to Van Alstyne, TX. Our region (TX/OK region, not North America) received quite a bit of rain in the days leading up to the meet. As such, we had to park offsite and take the shuttle to the venue. Having not been there, you will never know the hilarity of that statement.
Weigh-in was at 3pm. To no one’s surprise, Justin made weight easily. So he grabbed a couple burgers at the Barn Café and we found a seat in the pews to take in some of the preceding session. Meets at the Barn always bring out some decent lifters.
The session was set to begin at 5pm and Justin began warming up about 30 minutes prior. Everything looked quick and crisp. I was somewhat concerned about how Justin would perform in this meet. After all, he had been out of the gym for the two weeks leading up to the week of the meet. The first week he was attacked by a Brown Recluse spider and the following week he was away on business. So we opened with an easy 100kg snatch. He followed this with a 108kgs snatch for his second attempt which was a competition PR. On the third attempt Justin successfully matched his training PR at 115kgs. I suspect he could have probably done 118kgs here but we are happy with the 115kgs and are looking for 120kgs at State.
Warm-ups for the Clean & Jerk session were slightly hectic. We were able to stay on track and open with a successful attempt at 125kgs. We followed this with a competition PR attempt at 131kgs. We lost this attempt in a split decision by the judges on what I assume was a pressout. We were given a two minute clock but I was successful in squeezing a little extra time with weight changes. Justin took the platform with 133kgs for a successful third attempt.
This was a good meet for Justin. His 115kgs snatch and 133kgs CJ gave him a 248kgs total and 2nd place in his class. I feel he is poised for a breakout performance at this year’s State Championships.
I almost forgot to mention, big news coming this weekend………