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Over 200 powerlifters from around the state of Wisconsin came to Mauston High School to show their strength at the first ever Coaches vs. Cancer Powerlifting Meet Saturday.

Mauston High School has held Coaches vs. Cancer events with other sports such volleyball and basketball, so to hit another audience Assistant Coach Joe Crowley came up with the idea to host a Coaches vs. Cancer Powerlifting Meet.

Crowley talked to the other coaches and to the Relay for Life Committee to pitch the idea to them as well. Crowley said all involved said “they thought it would be a great idea.”

Shirley Larson, whose on the Relay for Life Planning Committee, said with many different towns and cities coming to the meet it brings a larger audience of people who have been affected by cancer.

“Instead of two high school teams powerlifting brings us in the community with multiple cities and high schools,” she said.

A bake sale and bucket challenge were also held and merchandise such as deadlift socks, bracelets and shirts was sold to benefit the Juneau County Relay for Life, which benefits the American Cancer Society.

The total amount raised for Juneau County Relay for Life was $414.

Crowley said the sport of powerlifting, no matter who is competing with each other, is like one big family.

“Everyone’s cheering for everyone,” Crowley said. “You want that person next to you even though you’re competing with them you want them to do their absolute best and get that weight.”

The family aspect also ties into the cancer aspect of the meet.

“We’re all going through this together,” Crowley said. “We all have someone in some way who has been affected by cancer. So we’re all fighting that fight together.”

Necedah’s Tessa Wertjes lifted a total squat personal best of 500 pounds in the equipped portion of the competition. She finished the day in 1st place in the 198 pound weight class lifting a total of 995 pounds between bench press and deadlift.

“I’m doing it to help them show that they are stronger,” she said. “Just because were lifting weights and your fighting something were both strong.”

On the competition side for Necedah’s Shan Bloomer the day not only meant for those fighting cancer but it was also a redemption day for him competition wise.

Bloomer hit 600 pounds at the state meet before injuring his knee at the state competition. He was able to do it again Saturday and win the 275 pound weight class lifting a total of 1,285 pounds.

“It was great knowing I could do it again after falling at state,” he said.

Crowley said the goal for all the lifters is to do their best.

“For every kid to lift as much weight as they possibly can and walk out with a bright face and hopefully some new personal best are achieved,” he said.

Results from Mauston Powerlifting for equipped competition were Lexxie Baar (148) placed 2nd overall lifting a total of 795 pounds between squat, bench press and deadlift. Amber Deitz (132) placed 4th lifting a total of 570 pounds, Olivia Kempfer (181) placed 4th lifting a total of 585 pounds. Shaye Winker (198) placed 2nd lifting a total of 610 pounds. On the boys side, Travis Johnson (198) placed 2nd with a total of 950 pounds and Josh Behling (275) lifted a total of 890 pounds for 4th place overall.

For raw competition on the girls side, Miranda Koehnke (165) took the top spot in her weight class lifting a total of 675 pounds for 1st place.

Teammate Michelle Steffens (148) placed 2nd with a total of 550 pounds. On the boys side, Daniel Domenech (181) lifted a total of 1,000 to win 1st place in his weight class, Josh Domenech finished behind him in the same weight class with 865 pounds. Garret Lutz (198) placed 3rd and Ryan Williams (275+) placed 2nd lifting a total of 750 and 950 pound respectively.

Results for Necedah Powerlifting in the equipped competition for the girls side, include Alannah Daniels (105) lifting a total of 585 pounds for 1st, teammate Noelle Ladwig finished behind her in 2nd with 520 total pounds lifted. Stephanie Lavoy (114) placed 1st with 845 total pounds lifted. Rhiannon Mach (123) lifted 685 pounds for 1st place, placing behind her was Kendra Bartels in 2nd with 670 total pounds. Elana Marquez (132) placed 2nd overall in her weight class with 690 pounds with teammate Jamie Hernandez (132) placing 3rd with 615 pounds. Audrey Williams and Mel Hess (148) placed 3rd and 4th place respectively with 760 and 740 pounds.

Necedah swept the 165 weight class with Abbi Saunders in 1st place with 860 pounds, Cloe Winters in 2nd with 780 pounds and Sophia Becerra placed 3rd with 730 pounds. Sammy Kristian (181) placed 2nd with 780 pounds lifted and Ana Texley (198+) lifted 705 pounds for 1st place.

On the boys side for Necedah Powerlifting, Holden Manhart (132) placed 1st with 780 pounds. Ell Zavala (148) placed 3rd with 735 pounds and Pat Arbanas (165) placed 3rd with 1055 pounds total.

In the 181 pound weight class Necedah took the top two spots with Jacob Pangborn lifting 915 for 1st place and Tyler Kiesling placing 2nd with 690 pounds. Jared Thomas (275) took 2nd overall in his weight class with 1,205 pounds lifted.

In team results, the Mauston girls finished in 3rd place behind Whitehall and Necedah. On the boy’s side, Mauston’s placed 2nd after winning a tie breaker with Tomah and Necedah took 1st place overall.

Follow Erica Dynes on Twitter @EDynesSports.

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