COLUMBUS, Ohio – It was another first for Concordia University Lifting Sports over the weekend as four Bulldogs represented the weightlifting team at the 2023 National University Championships held March 2-3. The inaugural season for weightlifting was capped at the national event hosted at the Greater Columbus Convention Center in Columbus, Ohio, where Kayleigh Maloney earned a first place medal in the discipline of snatch. The competition marked the first time Concordia has taken part in a national championship event in either weightlifting or powerlifting.
Head Coach Freddie Myles led the weightlifters into action at three previous competitions: the Kansas Open (Sept. 10), Midwest Regionals (Nov. 5) and Heartland Open (Jan. 21).
Individual highlights from the National University Championships (sponsored by USA Weightlifting) are included below. Weightlifting tests each athlete in the disciplines of snatch and clean and jerk. Overall national finishes for Bulldog athletes within their own weight classes were fourth for Merry Berris, fourth for Evan Fukuhara, 12th for Rylee Kara and sixth for Maloney. Fukuhara was in a close battle for third at 73kg. A native of Nampa, Idaho, Maloney was given a medal for her national title in snatch at 59kg. Both Berris and Fukuhara either reset or equaled personal bests in their lifts.
· Marry Berris – Placed fourth in the 49kg weight class; improved her total by 17.5 percent for the season and set new personal bests in both lifts.
· Evan Fukuhara – Placed fourth in the 73kg class; equaled personal best in clean and jerk.
· Rylee Kara – Placed 12th in the 64kg class.
· Kayleigh Maloney – Placed sixth in the 59kg class; took first place in snatch.
While weightlifting has completed its 2022-23 season, Concordia Powerlifting now looks forward to its national championships. Powerlifting nationals will unfold in Arlington, Texas, April 13-16.