New Albany High School has achieved success in several sports this year, and the boys powerlifiting squad added to that on Monday, winning the school’s first division championship.
Competing in Fulton, the squad continued their success from their practice meet at Nettleton, with three lifters earning first place finishes.
Jerrell Howell lifted a total of 860 for the 132 weight class, Zach Hand 1,245 in class 198 and Wade Simmons easily won the 308 (+) class with a total of 1,465.
“We told our kids three years ago that if they would buy into what we were doing, we would be a successful program,” NAHS coach Ron Price said. “For these kids to have as much success as they’ve had this year, in all athletics, it’s been fun for New Albany High School and the kids to get this recognition.”
Five ‘Dawgs earned second place finishes: Brandon Holt in class 114 with 475 lbs., Reggie Webb in the 148 class with 1,040, O.J. Hardin in the 198 class and 1,175, Luke Foley in class 242 with 1,345 and Collin Stubblefield with 1,170 lbs. in class 308.
“To see them perform the way have at the practice meet and at division is exciting for me to see as a coach,” Price said. “
For our kids to be able to lift the weight they’ve been able to, it goes back to all of the hours they’ve spent lifting, and it makes me proud of them and makes them see that all of the hard work is paying off. It helps us to move forward and for the younger guys to see that what we’re doing works and it’s going to continue to help us win championships and get where we want to in 4A.”
Rounding out the competition, Cade Simmons finished third in the 275 weight class with 1,245 lbs, while Josh Creekmore and Shane Smith each finished fourth, Creekmore with 1,045 lbs. in the 165 weight class and Smith with 1,075 lbs. in the 181 weight class.
Price noted the performance of Wade Simmons in particular, as he has battled a knee injury from last year to not only win his weight class, but also put himself in place for a potential state championship.
“He’s really been looking forward to this over the last year and has worked hard,” Price said the of senior. “He’s got the natural body to be successful, he’s so strong and he has short arms, so it allows him to be successful at this sport.”
“We have three weeks before the North Half meet, and I think he will only get stronger and better.”
Next for the Bulldogs is a March 3 date for the North Half championship, and the 2011 State Championships will take place at Mississippi Coliseum on April 16.