As a former college athlete, Van-Far coach Blake Logan understands the importance of time in the weight room and its correlation to success in sports.
Since coming to the district, Logan has worked hard to instill this reality into the lives of Van-Far’s student athletes.
His efforts are beginning to pay off. Two weekends ago, Van-Far had triple the number of kids (33) it had the year before (11) participate in the 2014 Power Meet held at South Callaway High School.
“Success in any sports program starts in the weight room,” Logan added. “Some of the younger kids are starting to see that.”
Eight girls represented Van-Far and finished in fifth place out of 12 teams.
Other schools who competed include South Callaway, Montgomery County, Hallsville, Westran, Eldon, Southern Boone, Centralia, Father Tolton, Harrisburg, Mark Twain, and Palmyra.
Jayda Borgmeyer led the girls squad by breaking a power meet record in the 0-139 pound weight class. Her clean of 160 lbs. set the new mark.
Micaella Love finished third in the event with 152 lbs.
“Coach was telling me I was going to beat the record,” Borgmeyer said. “My adrenaline started pumping…Finally when it came time to do it, I got to the amount and got the 10th rep…”
Logan said Borgmeyer is a natural with the weights.
“I told her that based on watching her she’s pretty natural at it,” he said. “I told her she could go up there and possibly win the power meet…She really enjoys the hang clean…I’m extremely proud of her.”
In the overall athletic rating, Love finished sixth out of 89 other girls with a 0.7601. Chevi Windland was seventh at 0.7579.
The rating calculates numbers such as body weight, bench, squat, clean, vertical jump, and 40 yard dash.
The other girls participating included Hannah Bauman, Emily Laskowski, Madison Orr, Alexis DeTienne, and Naija Jackson.
“One of the things I was told by one of the coaches was how well coached the girls were in forms and lifts,” Logan said.
“Hopefully this will spark interest in other girls.”
Borgmeyer added that all of the girls were in the same weight class so they enjoyed the chance to cheer on one another throughout the competition.
While the boys overall finished just ninth among the 12 teams, the group had several top performances.
Freshman Sharrod Connor won the 40-yard dash with a time of 4.79 seconds in the 125-140 lb. weight class.
He also took second in vertical with 32” and was fourth overall with a 1.1346 athletic rating.
Compared with the 291 overall athletes, Connor’s rating gave him 12th place.
“I put a lot of practice in the weight room and in other sports,” Connor said. “In the weight room, you get stronger and tougher and pretty much in every sport you need some sort of muscle. This helps me to be even more successful than I was in previous years.”
Logan Boyd earned a top three medal in the 170-185 lb. weight class with a rating of 1.0898. He finished second in the bench press with 280 lbs.
Boyd was also 18th overall for his rating out of the 291 boys in the competition.
“I was happy with my accomplishment because of my knee injury,” Boyd said.
Boyd added that he enjoyed the large number of Van-Far athletes competing this year.
He also liked the number of younger athletes who competed.
“It shows we have a future of lifters,” he said. “Being younger, weight lifting sets you up for success.”
Parker Wallace placed third in the bench press with 135 lbs. for the 0-125 lb. weight class. His overall athletic rating of 0.5621 gave him eighth place, in spite of him battling through a back injury and not competing in the clean event.
Joseph Clithero took sixth in his weight class with a 1.0513 overall athletic rating. He was in the same weight class as Connor.
His rating was 26th out of the 291 other competitors.
Kyle Decker had an eighth place overall athletic rating in the 185-200 lb. weight class.
Michael Colson took eighth with a .5547 in the 225-250 lb. weight class.
Overall, Van-Far took 25 boys to the competition.
Coach Logan said his goal is to get 50 athletes out for next year’s Power Meet.