The MCHS powerlifting team has been on a roll this season, for the boys side placing first at both meets so far this season (Joplin High School and Glendale) and the girls getting third (Joplin High School) and first (Glendale). I’m here to tell you what makes this team so dominant.
Meet the Team
On the boys side of this team there are 26 males (Kolton Blue, Sampson Boles, Arturo Morales, Eric Munoz ,Jaw Soe, Michael Williams, Trent Alik Kaiden Campbell, Junior Eliam, Bailey Lewis, Jesus Mendoza, Orvill Pitts, Bradley Saylor, Mark Clements, Zach Hinton, Chazz Jacks, Jonathan Lingo, Jared Mora, Levi Neale, Jorge Ramirez, Alexis Sanchez, Nine Tu, Raider Blue, Jaxen Campbell, Jordan Saylor, Connor Yang) every one of these lifters are unique in there own way such as Connor Yang being able to pull a 325 dead lift at only 103 body weight as a freshman, Kaiden Campell squatting 600 pounds as a junior, Sampson Boles squat cleaning 260 at the 145 lb class, and Jesuz Mendoza benching 225 at 168 as a first year power lifter, which is insane.
On the girl’s side there are 7 (Jackie Grider, Emily Thornton, Nicole Estrada, Ebenee Munoz, Zoe Thornton, Kylan Horton-Sherman, Reagan Myrick). Led by Grider, and Thorton (Thorton a multiple state champion). The girl’s side is small in numbers but big in heart and strength.
What Makes this Team Different
I spoke to the head coach of the power lifting team (Coach McCullough) about what makes this year’s team different and special from his past teams, and he said that this year’s team is very different. From lots of heavyweight lifters to more lightweight-middleweight athletes, McCullough is very impressed with the teams success with this new style and hopefully this team continues to impress.
Over the past 4 years of competing, the team has gotten 10 team awards with an average of 4 meets a season. But there is still something missing from the awards, a first place at state. They have gotten very close over the years, bu they haven’t had enough people. McCullough states, “It’s a numbers game.”
The team needs just a few more people to win state from 35-45 athletes. The closest was 2018 where they placed 2nd but fell short because they didn’t have enough athletes. Hopefully this years squad gets gold March 7th at Glendale with this new type of personal from lots of 200 lb-250 athletes to more 125-175 lifters.
NBA All-Star weekend is right around the corner. Competitions like the three point contest, slam dunk contest, and the skills challenge, and following those events is the famous All-Star game. This year again, the two captains will be Lebron James and Giannis Antetokounmpo.
Davis Bertans, Washington Wizards power forward. Shooting 43.1% from three
Devonte’ Graham, Charlotte Hornets point guard. Shooting 35.8% from three.
Joe Harris, Brooklyn Nets small forward. Shooting 42.2% from three.
Zach LaVine, Chicago Bulls point guard/shooting guard. Shooting 37.6% from three.
Damian Lillard, Portland Trailblazers point guard. Shooting 39.8% from three, but was replaced because of an injury by Devin Booker, Phoenix Suns shooting guard shooting 35% from three.
Duncan Robinson, Miami Heats small forward/shooting guard. Shooting 43.9% from three.
Trae Young, Atlanta Hawks point guard. Shooting 37.3% from three.
Buddy Hield won this contest but it was not very easy.
Slam Dunk ContestParticipants
Pat Connaughton, Milwakuee Bucks small forward/shooting guard.
Aaron Gordon, Orlando Magics small forward/power forward.
Dwight Howard, Los Angeles Lakers power forward/center.
Derrick Jones Jr., Miami Heats Small Forward/Power forward.
The outcome of this contest was very debatable
Skills Challenge Participants
Derrick Rose, Detroit Pistons point guard.
Patrick Beverly, Los Angeles Clippers point guard.
Bam Adebayo, Miami Heats power forward/center.
Pascal Siakam, Toronto Raptors power forward.
Jayson Tatum, Boston Celtics small forward/powerforward.
Domantas Sabonis, Indiana Pacers power forward/center.
Spencer Dinwiddie, Broklyn Nets guard.
Khris Middleton, Milwaukee Bucks guard.
Lebron James- captain
Anthony Davis- forward-center
Damian Lillard but replaced by Devin Booker-guard
New Format to Honor Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gigi
Each of the four quarters will stand on their own and the fourth quarter won’t even have a clock. All to spice up the competition, add some intrigue, honor the memory of the late Kobe Bryant and most of all, get folks talking about it beyond the buzzer. The uniforms for Team LeBron and Team Giannis will be 24 and 2, representing the numbers that Kobe wore with the Lakers and his daughter Gigi wore for her travel team. The shot clock will illuminate when it hits 24 and 8, representing both jersey numbers worn by Kobe with the Lakers.
Well, if you’re in weights here at MCHS, you’ve probably seen or heard the new upgrades that have happened in our weight room. First from what I remember, the first major upgrade was the TV with the good speaker. Next was the stretch band and weight belt holders which was nice before that we just put them all in a locker. Then we got some Olympic bars, which I loved and other people who are good at clean. Then we went from old school clips to these Rogue Fitness Collars. More and more good upgrades kept happening freshman year.
Then we got three new squat racks, two on each on so six in total plus four pull up bars. Now we have nine squat racks and four pull up bars. Can’t wait to see what new improvements the weight room has in the upcoming future.
Students thoughts of the weight room upgrades
“My favorite weight room upgrade is probably the new clips or olympic bars because its not as time consuming as the old clips and old bars. The old clips were rusty and were very hard to get on. The olympic bars are nice for cleaning, with free bar rotation and doesn’t grind.”
Danny Grider (Sophomore)
“I like the room we have, more racks for more people, better equipment so we don’t get hurt”
Jacob Gordon (Freshman)
“Probably the squat racks we got, plus they came with more pull up bars. More space in there, easier to set up for squats just a newer and cleaner look.”
Arturo Morales (Senior)
“Squat racks, there’s so much more room, more racks, easier to lift, more people can lift… it’s beautiful.”
Breaking records has always been an achievement players strive for in the NBA. Records like Wilts 100 points is more than likely going to remain untouchable. But the real question is, what is the greatest individual record ever recorded in the NBA?
Wilt Chamberlain’s 100 point game
In Wilt’s time, there was no such thing as a three point line, so all of his buckets were worth two points. If you do the math, he had to score 50 times. It may not seem like a lot, but when you have defenders guarding and no three point line, it seems impossible. Kobe Bryant was the closest to reach 100 with his 81 point performance. Then there were many 70 point games performed by Devin Booker, David Robinson, David Thompson, and Elgin Baylor. I believe that the list of these players and the amount they have scored can prove that no one will be able to touch Wilts record. If there ever were to be a player to break that record, I believe that it would be James Harden. He has the ability to score on anyone and in almost every situation. Harden has had multiple 60 point games. Many say he is a ball hog, but if you can score over 50 points then I think that gives you the right to call an isolation play whenever you want.
Russel Westbrook’s Triple Double Season
If you don’t know what a triple double is, it is a stat line of double digits through the stats of points, assists, and rebounds. Westbrook was the first player ever to to average a triple-double for an entire season, he holds the NBA’s career record for triple-double games (181) and previously held the single-season record of 41, which Russell Westbrook broke on April 9, 2017. To be able to acquire 10 plus in every category during a game is pretty hard, especially to be a point guard and get rebounds over big men is challenging. Westbrook also averaged a triple double for 2 seasons in a row. It is a shame he has not won a championship yet.
Klay Thompson’s 3-point Barrage
The Golden State Warriors shooting guard Klay Thompson broke his teammate Stephen Curry’s record for the most made 3-pointers in a game. Stephen Curry’s record was 13 made 3-pointers made was broken October 29, 2019, on a Monday night against the Chicago Bulls. Klay Thompson managed to put up 14 3-pointers to go along with his 52 points. Being able to shoot and make 14 3-pointers in a game is extremely challenging and difficult. This record might be broken in the future as this league evolves into a shooting era. He may even break his own record in the future.
Scott Skiles’ 30 Assists Game
On December 30, 1990, Scott Skiles (point guard for the Orlando Magic) dished out 30 assists in a single game against the Denver Nuggets. The Orlando Magic beat the Nuggets 155-116. To get to 30 assists seems impossible, even 10 getting 10 assists is difficult. This record to me is one of the most impressive records to ever be recorded.
Wilt Chamberlain’s 55 Rebounds
It is really impressive to hold the record for the most points, but to hold and additional record for the most rebounds in a game is insanely impressive. On November 24, 1960, Wilt snatched up 55 rebounds in a game against Bill Russell and the Boston Celtics. I think that this record will never be broken or even be close to being broken. Wilt Chamberlain was 7 foot 1 so it makes since that he would get a good amount of rebounds but no one would ever think it was possible to grab 55 rebounds. I believe that the centers in today’s league will never be able to break that record because of the way the centers are adding the 3-point to their arsenal, causing them to be out on the perimeter, restricting them from getting as much rebounds as they would if they weren’t playing at the 3-point line.
Elmore Smith and his 17 Blocks
On October 28, 1973, Elmore Smith rejected 17 shots in a game against the Portland Trail Blazers and his team (Los Angeles Lakers) managed to win the game 111-98. Smith was a center so that made it a slight bit easier to get 17 blocks, but to even get 10 blocks is insanely good. Along with Wilt Chamberlain’s rebound record, this record is also untouchable. In today’s league, players are more crafty, and smarter with their shot selection, so I definitely think it is harder to get blocked in this league than it was back in the day.
Larry Kenon and Kendall Gill and there Pick Pocketing Skills
Larry Kenon and Kendall Gill share the NBA record for the most steals in a game with 11 steals. To steal a ball from a player is harder than you think, especially if they are an elite ball handler or an elite passer. In today’s league, players like Kyrie Irving, Stephen Curry, James Harden, make it hard for a player to steal the ball from them because they are all elite ball handlers and passers. Back when Larry and Kendall played, players really didn’t know how to dribble as well as the elite ball handlers today know how to, and also there may have been a few rule changes with dribbling.