USOEC lifter wrenches away bronze

William Burns

The Northern Michigan USOEC weightlifters competed in the National Junior Weightlifting Championship where one NMU athlete earned a bronze medal in the event.

The competitors took to the gym on Sunday, Feb. 17 in Foster City, Calif.

Sophomore  weightlifter Chris Young, from Oakland, Mich., took part in the 85 kg weight class and lifted for a total of 257 kg, clinching third place.

Young lifted 110 kg in the snatch and then followed it up with a lift of 147 kg in the clean and jerk.

In weightlifting, the results are determined by the athlete who can lift the heaviest weight and has three attempts to successfully conduct a proper lift.

When two athletes lift for the same weight, the higher position is given to the athlete whose overall body weight is the least.

Young said he went into the event knowing that if he could force a tie with his opponent, who was already in third place, he knew he could he get the win by way of a tie-breaker.

“I knew I had a chance at third when I saw the results of the other guy’s lift.” Young said. “All I had to do was lift the same amount and I would earn third place because my overall body weight was less than my opposition.”

USOEC head coach Vance Newgard said it was great weekend for not only Young, but other members of the team as well.

“Overall, it was a really great weekend,” Newgard said. “Obviously the highlight would be Chris Young’s performance. Not only did he get a bronze medal but we had other athletes that competed and had great results as well.”

Sophomores Ann Bengry and Brian Budd both scored personal best lift totals this weekend.

Budd lifted for a total of 235 kg, surpassing his previous best by 30 kg, and finished in seventh place in the competition.

Bengry passed her previous best by 5 kg as she lifted for 105 kg in the 53 kg weight class.

The next event for the USOEC weightlifters will be the Thunderdome Challenge.

The event will be held on Monday, Feb. 25 at the Superior Dome.

Young said he is looking forward for the home meet because the team is excited to be competing in front of their friends and families after being on the road as much as he is.

“We love doing what we’re doing and it is really such a great atmosphere.” Young said. “It’s going to be really competitive and a lot of fun.”