Freshman powerlifter takes first at second meet

By Emelie Gulde

Camryn Lifting

Powerlifting is a sport that is often overlooked and categorized as a filler for off-season athletes, but no one should underestimate the power of a lifter. Camryn Riggins is a freshman, and based off at her placement at her first two meets, already she is a winner.

“Camryn is focused on what she needs to do to achieve her goals,” said Julie Riggins, Camryn’s mom.

Powerlifting is its own kind of sport, because athletes are competing against themselves and trying to lift their absolute maximum. Individual scores do not affect the entire team as they do in other sports.

“It’s a different dynamic where you are not depending on people directly to impact your performance,” powerlifting coach Gregg Frashure said.

For a sport that does not revolve around team spirit and group encouragement, the Cougar powerlifters sure have a lot of it this year. Everyone takes care and looks out for one another, and the teams are a tight-knit group.

“They’re your family, and you’ve just got to accept that. I feel like all sports programs are like that, but I feel like power lifting is more of a really tight bond,” sophomore Jordan Seymore said.

Riggins, who is also a volleyball player, placed second in her first powerlifting meet of the year, and took first at her second. Even though she is the lightest powerlifter at CSHS, weighing only 97 pounds, Riggins is not afraid to fight for the win.

“I’m kind of the newbie because I’m a freshman and I’m the smallest, but everyone is like my older sister, and they all take care of me,” freshman Camryn Riggins said.

Like most of the other sports at the school, powerlifting was affected by the switch to a 5A district. The only competitions that have changed are the regional and state meets. Other than those events, the teams can compete with any school, no matter the size.

“That’s going to make it a little more difficult because we’re dealing with larger schools, but I think we’re up for the challenge,” Frashure said.

The competitions are divided into three events: the deadlift, the benchpress, and the squat. The lifter has three tries at each event, and the total amount of weight they lift for all three events is the powerlifter’s score for that meet.

“It really makes you try, because it puts you through stress a lot. It helps you cope with it. It puts you in a situation where you might not want to do something, but you have to,” Seymore said.

All the powerlifters have different ways to motivate themselves, but Riggins’ family is her main source of encouragement.

“My mom and my brothers come to my meets. My grandparents will text me, and tell me good luck and ask me how I did,” Riggins said.

The Cougar powerlifting teams are successful, and the teams are full of athletes like Riggins, who try hard and push through regardless of their stature or experience.