By LARRY GAGE
Special to the PRESS
January 29, 2015
The 2015 high school powerlifting season is on and a contingent of Port Isabel High lifters participated in their first meet of the year in Brownsville last week. The Pace Invitational Powerlifting Meet was held at Pace High School on Saturday, Jan. 25.
Head Port Isabel High lifting coach Joe Gonzalez spoke Wednesday of his team’s results. Only eight competitors made the trip, four girls and four guys, as some students who are expected to compete this season had conflicting obligations.
Twenty five teams from schools throughout the lower Rio Grande Valley were on-hand, almost all from Class 6A, which includes the largest schools with the highest number of available athletes for a given sport. Port Isabel was one of only three 4A schools that showed up with a team.
“The only other schools in our class were Rio Hondo and La Feria,” Coach Gonzalez said. “I told the kids, ‘Don’t compare yourselves to the 6A (lifters) – compare yourselves to the 4A schools.’ Against them we did pretty well.”
“I didn’t take the whole team,” Gonzalez reported. “Some kids had other functions – I had some girls who had a mariachi competition, and some had a tennis tournament.”
Below are the results for each team member who competed at the Pace meet:
Girls: Eva Gomes, 17th in her weight class; total lift – 495 pounds. Franchesca Sandoval, 7th, TL-655 pounds. Vanessa Ybarra, 17th, 440 pounds. Jocelyn Padilla, 3rd, TL-740 pounds.
Guys: Nelson Mejia, 165-pound division, 15th, TL-690 pounds. John Ray Martinez, 198 lb. div., 3rd, TL-1,225 pounds.; and Esai Camacho, 198 lb. div., 14th, TL-950 pounds. Juan Mireles, 220 lb. div., 16th, TL-985 pounds.
The state is divided into regions and three Tarpon and Lady Tarpon lifters are included in the latest regional rankings for their individual weight classes. Jocelyn Padilla ranks 4th in her class, Vanessa Ybarra is ranked 10th, and John Ray Martinez ranks 3rd in the 198-pound division. All lifters are ranked only against lifters in the respective classes, according to school size.
This Saturday Coach Gonzalez will take a larger team of lifters to a meet in Santa Rosa, where they will be competing only against teams from other Class 4A and 3A schools.
“So we’ll have a bigger team and we should collect some medals this time.”
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