For the Apalachee High School weightlifting team, winning area titles is becoming a hard habit to break.
AHS won its fourth area crown in as many years Saturday with 107 team points, easily outdistancing second-place Monroe Area, who compiled 38. For coach Shane Davis, the hard work put in by his athletes in the weight room continues to pay off.
“You never can really tell how things are going at these competitions until after the second round,” Davis said. “It was a very good day for us. We qualified our second highest number of athletes for state."
The top three finishers in each weight division qualified for the upcoming state meet March 20 in Perry. AHS has won state two years in a row and three of the last four years.
The following is a breakdown for the AHS weightlifters at area, which was hosted by Rockdale County:
•140-and-below: James Vang, first; Cody Boyle, second and Rocksha Audies, third;
•141-150: Jaisson Gomez, sixth;
•151-160, Alex Camp, first;
•161-170: Kendall Conover, second; F.J. Smith, third;
•171-180: Jon Lee, first; Nick Brown, third;
•181-190: Dennis Prichard, first;
•191-205, Quincy Gibson, first; Ervin Sutton, fourth;
•206-225: Javier Crawford, fifth;
•226-245: Tony Hoard. third, Shaun Hill, fourth;
•246-above: John Brown, third.
Athletes competed in the bench press, squat and power cleng at area. Each athlete was allowed three lifts in each event. The highest lifts were added together with 10 points for a first place finish, eight points for second, six points for third, four points for fourth, two points for fifth and one point for sixth.
“I am proud of them,” Davis said. “Our kids buy into it. We work very hard at it. We only have two competitions — area and state and we work all year for them. It all goes toward us being able to compete on the football field on Friday nights. This helps us break up the long offseason and gives us something to shoot for in March.”
The AHS coach said several of his athletes will be returning to state while some will be competing for the first time.