Powerlifting takes first once again

New Trier wins third consecutive title


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New Trier Powerlifters host a casual Halloween regional meet on Oct. 30, many lifters used the opportunity to film and submit their lifts for the October Throwdown

New Trier has won the annual USA Weightlifting High School Throwdown for the third consecutive year.

The competition, held throughout the month of October, was centered around the Powerlifting team, but video submissions were open to any student who wanted to compete.

More than 120 Trevians participated, lifting a total more than 57,000 pounds.

I was able to share something that I love to do with any other athlete in the school. It also gave me a way to connect with my friends in the weight room.

— Ryan Fenner

“To win once was great, but to win three times in a row really highlights the values we ask our student-athletes to espouse: consistency, effort, resilience, growth,” said Powerlifting coach Jim Davis. “They were all on display and I’m incredibly proud of all who participated.”

Due to the high number of students and schools participating, the High School Throwdown takes place online through digital submissions.

To compete, there is a virtual submission process for three movements: bench press, back squat, and power clean. Athletes film their max attempts and submit to USAW headquarters. USAW coaches evaluate the film and if the technique meets qualifying standards, the athlete’s total is added to the team score, according to Davis.

“After evaluation by the USAW committee, every pound successfully lifted counts toward our team score,” said Davis.

The online setting of the Throwdown differs from a typical in-person meet, but that didn’t hinder the Powerlifting team.

“I personally love the virtual meets because it gives me a goal to work towards and a timeline to program my training by, but I’ll always be a bigger fan of the in-person meets,” said senior Ellie Song, the president of the Powerlifting team.

“The main difference is that there is no pressure for me to fail a lift because while it is disappointing, I can always try again after a few days of rest, and hopefully lift my target weight,” said senior Ryan Fenner.

“The first step is always making sure I know how my body feels in preparation for a max effort lift. If I’m not feeling it on a certain day, then I already know I’m not able to perform at my best.”

Being able to submit the video of lifts online allowed many non- powerlifting students to also take part in the competition.

“I was able to share something that I love to do with any other athlete in the school,” said Fenner. “It also gave me a way to connect with my friends in the weight room.”

While the competition was centered between schools, participants could still win individual titles. New Trier had two athletes take first place in their divisions, Ellie Song and Alex Mendes.

Song submitted an impressive 300 pound squat, 245 pound deadlift, and a 125 pound bench.

“I finally felt like I was getting stronger than I was before the pandemic,” Song said. “But overall, I was very excited to see the results of my training over the past year, as I’ve had to be very flexible and patient because of the lockdown.”

“I’m proud of the team’s effort, their commitment, and the way they supported each other through the competition,” said Davis. “It was a new experience for many, but they did everything they were asked to do and came out on top.”