Stanfield’s weightlifting team may have been surrounded by some serious competition, but that didn’t stop them from showing their strength during Saturday’s Panther Powerlifting Classic at Central High School.
The Tigers were the only 2A team at the event, competing against eight other schools in the 3A division and higher. They claimed second place as a team with 12 points, falling short of the top spot by just two points to the 5A Scappoose Indians.
“I went into this competition to see if what we’re doing in the gym is comparable to others,” said coach Travis Reeser. “I had no doubt that these kids work as hard as anyone out there. It was so cool to watch them find success, and it was well-deserved.”
But the honors didn’t end there. In the 9th/10th grade division, the Tiger boys took first place with 70 points ― 24 points ahead of second-place Scappoose. The girls claimed first in their division with 92 points ― 44 points ahead of Scappoose, who again took second.
Sophomore Jessie Cardona was crowned the champion in the 114-pound class, freshman Kaden Combe took first in the 132-pound class, and sophomore Russell Stenovich came out on top at 220.
In the 97-pound division, sophomore Kaisa Tynkila took first in the girls division, as did Kaitlyn Lemmon at 124.
“Our kids demonstrated that they can compete with anyone,” Reeser said. “Too often, small rural schools get left in the shadows of the big schools when it comes to these types of activities. Stanfield showed them that it doesn’t matter how big your school is, what matters is how big your heart is. I couldn’t be more proud and excited for them.”
Stanfield will host a competition on Saturday, June 8 as their next event. The contest will feature weightlifting, speed testing, and vertical jumping. Reeser said the Tigers have invited every 1A, 2A, and 3A school in the state to come and take part.
“Then, we’ll start gearing up for the competition at Central High School next year,” Reeser said. “The kids are already talking about it.”