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Home News-Telegram Sports 8 Wildcats advance to regional powerlifting

8 Wildcats advance to regional powerlifting

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Just the chance at a state title has Sulphur Springs powerlifters and coach Rodney Flowers excited.
The Sulphur Springs powerlifting team takes eight competitors today to regional action in Lindale. The top two finishers in each weight class advance to the state meet later this month in Abilene.
“I told them, I’ve already made the reservations in Abilene. So I am putting the pressure on them,” Flowers said with a smile. “I just hope I need to take the bus for all of them and don’t have to rent a mini-van.”
Lifters from Sulphur Springs rank near the top in their region and they expect success at meet.
Competitors include: Taylor Link, 132-pound class; J.R. Rivera, 148-pound class; Eddie Arciga, 148-pound class; Johnny McSheffery, 165-pound class; Joe Scott, 181-pound class; Jake Russell, 198-pound class; Tadarious Johnson and Andrew Burton, super heavyweights.
“We have Link at No. 2 in the region.  Arciga is No. 3, Rivera, Scott and McSheffery are No. 6 in their divisions. Russell is No. 1 and has been all year; Burton and Johnson are Nos. 3 and 4 in this region,” Flowers said.
“We have a pretty good chance that five or six of those guys could make it out,” the coach said. “The best chances probably are Taylor and Russell. The others it depends on how much they lift and how much the other people in the meet lift.”
Flowers said the East Texas region is pretty tough and features gritty competitors from Corsicana, Mount Pleasant, Lindale and other teams.
“The super heavyweight guys, Burton and Johnson, are going to have to really get it on to make it,” Flowers said.
Flowers said that this team does not have the numbers of some teams, but is stronger overall.
“Last year we had 22 kids and I could pick any of those 22 and they would lift well,” Flowers said. “This team is smaller, but they are stronger. This is the strongest group I have had in my three years of coaching powerlifting.”
The team has seen lifters ranked near the top all year. The squad has missed the top notch all year with four first place finishes, that was with getting a late start due to the 16-game football season and winning state.
“We did not get to start until later than usual, because of football,” Flowers said. “But that gave us a hunger for winning. The football team won state, then the basketball team got in the playoffs. We started powerlifting and we won first place in all of our meets. These kids just want to keep on winning, it’s contagious. I told them to be humble and set your goal at going to state and go get it.”
Flowers said, “To get to state you have to go PR (personal record) in all three events. I’ve never had anybody go to state. But I feel good about this group, like I said earlier. I’ve reserved the rooms.”
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