Latta teams have quick powerlifting success

Jan. 26—LATTA — Powerlifting at Latta High School is a brand new thing, but you sure can't tell it by the results the girls' and boy's teams have produced so far.

The Lady Panthers won their season-opening meet — the Strother Invitational — last week and on Wednesday finished as runners-up at the Dibble Powerlifting Invitational.

The Latta boys squad finished third at Strother, their only meet of the season so far. The Panthers are at Dibble tonight.

Both teams will head to the Bethel Invitational next Thursday inside the Firelake Arena in Shawnee.

According to Latta powerlifting head coach Zach Sullivan, this year is the first time the sport has been opened up to non-football schools, and so far his teams have taken full advantage.

"Now that it's open to all schools, it's a great opportunity for our kids to have the chance to compete," Sullivan told The Ada News. "I was fortunate to spend a lot of years coaching it at Allen and am grateful to our Athletic Director Dr. Jeff Williams, the school board & administration for giving our kids this opportunity. We already have a good weightlifting program, so that made the transition much easier."

Sullivan has 25 male athletes in his powerlifting program and an even more impressive 20 females signed up for the new sport.

"A good amount of my girls don't play other sports, so that was exciting," Sullivan said.

At the Strother Invitational, the Lady Panthers won the title while competing against 25 times. The Latta boys were third out of 33 teams.

"It was a great day for our kids. It was their first meet ever and they did a great job taking it all in," Sullivan said. "I was proud of their effort and willingness to compete."


Dibble Invitational

Traditional power Choctaw won the meet with 183 points while Latta was next with 155. Sulphur placed third with 80 followed by Marietta with 80 points and Southeast High School with 66.

The Lady Panthers were paced by softball standout Audrey Forshay and Faith Adegbule, who finished second at 120 pounds and 198 pounds, respectively.

Latta had three powerlifters finish third — Mary Belle Wilson at 220, Stacie Williams at 198, and Jaycie Prine at 165.

Erin Kerr placed fourth at 121 and Laraby Jennings placed fourth at 150.

Other Latta results included: Jayden Jackson, fifth at heavyweight; Payton Noland, sixth at 181; Ryan Grey, ninth at 136; Daisy Marcial, seventh at 136; Keegan Bellefeuille, ninth at 108 and Avery Wilson, seventh at 108.


Strother Invitational

Sullivan said 40 teams totaling nearly 700 lifters competed at this event.

The Lady Panthers piled up 162 points to win the team title. Sand Springs finished second with 134 and Depew was third at 95. Rounding out the Top 5 were Ardmore at 91 and Henryetta at 71.

Ryan Grey, Faith Adegbule, and Jaycie Prine paced the LHS team with second-place medals.

Audrey Forshay finished third and the trio of Laraby Jennings, Daisy Marical, and Jayden Jackson landed in fourth place.

Other Latta results included: Keagan Bellefueille, sixth place; Avery Wilson, seventh place; Erin Kerry, seventh place; Taryn Cotanny, seventh place; Payton Noland, seventh place; and Mary Belle Wilson, fifth place.


Strother Invitational

Crooked Oak ran away with the team title with 175 points. Dewar placed second with 119 and the Panthers grabbed third place with 81. Okemah was fourth at 74 and Holdenville was fifth at 67. The Konawa Tigers were sixth with 55 points.

Holden Lee, also known for his baseball skills at Latta, won the gold medal in the 168-pound weight class. Jed Marical was runner-up at 145 pounds.

Latta got a pair of fourth-place finishers — Ethan Harris at 168 pounds and Zeagan Stewart at 220 pounds.

Other LHS boys' results included: Zeke Rakes, 10th place, 123 pounds; Abraham Tellez, sixth place, 132 pounds; Andrew Morrow, 12th place, 157 pounds; Thomas Morrow, 11th place, 181 pounds; Cooper Underwood, 10th place, 198 pounds; Dylan Moffatt, 10th place, 220 pounds.