The post from USA Weightlifting reads, “Congratulations to the Strongest High School in America, New Trier (IL)!”
The New Trier Trevians just won the USA Weightlifting High School Throwdown, a National competition that tests athletes in bench press, squat, and power clean. It is a virtual event, wherein students submit each of their lifts (as well as an official weigh-in) to the USAW online portal. Those videos are evaluated by representatives of Team USA and an overall team winner is crowned.
The top two teams were the Trevians and the Chargers of Dos Pueblos H.S. (CA). Both teams had athletes turn out in droves. The difference in participation between first and second place? One person.
The Trevians had 90 completed lifts. The Chargers had 89.
“There’s an important lesson there,” said Trevian Head Coach Jim Davis. “That’s a powerful message to frame for our athletes. We are so proud of them all, and it could not be more clear that every one of them counts, every single competitor made an impact.”
One of those Trevian competitors was the 6’0” 215 lb Vice President of the Powerlifting club and co-captain of the football team, Clayton Genty. Genty says the event “was a great opportunity to compete.” In addition to his leadership, he added a strict bench press (with a pause) of 225 lbs and a 365 lb squat to the Trevian team total.
It was not just the competition, however, which made the experience valuable. Genty says that he was grateful for the “social aspect” of the event, reminding us that it “brought people together, we got the chance to hang out when we would have just been at home on our couches.” During remote learning, many other athletes added that the opportunity to compete in a safe environment was a highly appreciated part of their day.
President of the Powerlifting team, Ellie Song, added a 245lb squat to the team total and agreed with the social and emotional benefits of the event. “Being a part of the club during remote learning has given me something to look forward to despite the pandemic and everything closing down… it was definitely hard to find the effort to get a workout in especially when I was at home, but being a part of this team gave me a reason to keep training.”
Clearly, there was more going on than just weightlifting.
Suzy Sanchez, Director of Program Outreach and Scouting at USA Weightlifting was “so excited to have hundreds of athletes participate in this year’s event, considering the national impacts of COVID-19.” Without prompting, she too recognized “the value of bringing people together through weightlifting.”
“Getting people together in this setting was amazing, and reminding them that there is value in just showing up and giving it your all.” Davis was quick to give thanks to his school principle, Denise Dubravec, and Athletic Director, Augie Fontanetta. “Our administration always has our kids’ best interest at heart.”
This was a team effort, the result of months and years’ worth of training, and the Trevians were grateful for the experience. USA Weightlifting H.S. Nationals is truly an event that goes Beyond Strength.