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Powerlifting championships to receive support from MHSAA

The Michigan High School Powerlifting Association is pleased to announce this season’s State Powerlifting Championships, March 9-10 at Ionia High School, will receive support from the Michigan High School Athletic Association. 

Powerlifting is not an MHSAA-sponsored sport; that is, the MHSAA does not host postseason competition or provide rules and regulations for the sport’s oversight. However, most athletes who will take part in the Powerlifting Championships—and many of their coaches as well—also participate in MHSAA sports during other seasons.

The Powerlifting Championships will be conducted by the MHSPLA, the governing body for high school powerlifting in Michigan. Boys varsity competition begins at 9 a.m. March 9, followed by boys junior varsity beginning at 2 p.m. The girls meet is March 10, with varsity competition starting at 9am, followed by the junior varsity at 2pm. 

More than 100 schools will have athletes competing in each division. Students in grades 7-12 are eligible. There are 13 weight classes for each division, and the top 10 lifters in each will receive medals. The top five teams in each division also will be awarded. 

“Powerlifting has been around for a long time in Michigan, but in the past 10 years we have seen tremendous growth of participants, specifically in the women’s division,” meet director Mike Holes said. “This year the MHSAA has agreed to be a sponsor of our sport, which we believe helps the validity of what we are doing with our association.

“The state championship meet is a big deal for Ionia to host this year. We are expecting over 1,100 lifters to qualify and compete throughout the four lifting sessions that will take place on March 9 and 10. Ionia has hosted a successful regional qualifier the previous seven years, and we are proud to be the host of the state championship meet this year.” 

A total of 107 Michigan high schools reported a total of 2,570 athletes participating in competitive weightlifting during the 2017-18 school year, according to data collected annually by the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS). A total of 1,043 girls from 91 Michigan high schools competed in 2017-18, and the MHSPLA has recently added a girls junior varsity division due to a large increase in girls participation. 

Also during the Powerlifting Championships, the MHSPLA will award its annual scholarships to a male and female lifter based on their lifting and academic achievements.

The MHSAA will serve as a presenting sponsor for the event, providing financial support, messaging and signage. 

Varsity boys competing in the greater Cedar Springs area include: Jarrett Railing, 207 lbs, Grant; and Jaiden Friesen, 242 lbs, Rockford.

JV boys competing in the greater Cedar Springs area include: Jonah Nelson, 114 lbs, Grant; Brendan Keelean, 165 lbs, Grant; and Treyton Railing, 181 lbs, Grant.

In the greater Cedar Springs area, only Grant High School has athletes competing in Varsity girls. They include: Kaitylyn Pasco, 105 lbs; Alexandria Castro, 165 bs; Abby Konicki, 181 lbs; Brecinda Hernandez, 198 lbs; Brittany Roosink, 242 lbs.

JV girls in the greater Cedar Springs area competing include Heather Crosby, 220 lbs, Grant.

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