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3 Ironton lifters earn state honors

Ironton High School students earned two first-place and one third-place finish at the state powerlifting meet. From left, Drew Wells (third place), Tommy Saul (first place) and Austin Rowe (first place). (The Ironton Tribune / Jimmy Walker)

By JIM WALKER

Tribune Sports Editor

 

When it came time for the state powerlifting meet, three Ironton lifters made a statement.

Senior Tommy Saul and juniors Austin Rowe and Drew Wells put up some heavy numbers as they recorded two first-place finishes and a third-place at the state powerlifting meet held in Kenton.

Saul and Rowe each took first place in their weight class while Wells finished third among 40-plus lifters in each division.

Saul was in the 210-pound weight class and posted a 325 bench press, a 575 dead lift and 600 squat at the state meet.

Rowe — who was in the 175-class — had a 240 bench with a 490 dead lift and 56 squat. Wells was in the 165-class and had a 250 bench, 445 dead lift and 465 squat.

All three boys won first-place at the Southeast regional meet held at Coal Grove. Saul set a regional record in the 225-pound class for total weight as he had a 325 bench, 610 squat and 585 dead lift.

“We won and that was our goal, but we felt we could have done more,” said Saul.

“We practice with 45-pound plates and they put 100-pound plates on the bars. They’re more concentrated in an area and that pulls you down and you have to adjust. We didn’t adjust like we should have.”

Wells finished with a 250 bench, 415 squat and 425 dead lift while Rowe had a 245 bench, 440 dead lift and a meet record 575 squat breaking the old mark by five pounds.

Wells didn’t lift in the regional meet last year, but he said Saul and Rowe got him interested this year.

“(Saul and Rowe) are my friends and I saw they were having fun with it,” said Wells. “I love lifting. I’ve done it since the sixth grade. I want to keep lifting. It’ll help me in football and track.”

Rowe was fifth in the regional meet last year and did not lift in the state meet. He said the experience was beneficial.

“Last year helped me learn what to do for the next year,” said Rowe. “It felt good. It’s a great accomplishment.”