D’Iberville High powerlifting team raises the bar as state champs

Uplifted with school spirit, the D’Iberville Boys and Girls Powerlifting teams made school history.

Over the weekend in Jackson, Mississippi, D’Iberville High School competed in the state power lifting competition. For the first time ever, the Boys and Girls teams both became state champions in the same season. Coach Josh Ladner said, “My motivation is always the success of the kids.”

Senior Janiya Hunt has been lifting for Coach Ladner for the past three years. Hunt tells News 25 her motivation is to win no matter what it takes. “I was ready to go get it. I was like ‘I’m taking nothing but first place.’”

Twelve boys and 12 girls make up the competition teams. Students compete in 12 different weight classes and three different events, bench press, deadlift, and squats. “To win the girls and then to turn around and win the boys, it takes a tremendous amount of work, an army of people and the kids have to stay focused.”

Hunt says she takes no days off. She trains five days a week, is senior class president, homecoming queen and Ms. DHS. “You got to be dedicated, work hard. You have to have the talent; you have to make time for it. So, when you have all of those things you can make something big happen like what we did last weekend.”

The students are just happy to be back hitting the weights. Senior Terrell Brown said, “Last year, it got taken away from us due to COVID, but it feels great to be a state champion.”

Emotions ran high after Hunt broke her personal record while at competition. “Immediately, crying as soon as I put the bar down because it was my senior year. It was my last life and I love lifting for Coach Ladner, I don’t want this to end.”

But now, the team needs your help. After winning the state championship for both boys and girls power lifting, D’Iberville High is asking for community support. They are fundraising money to reward these students with championship rings and apparel.

The team has a fundraising goal of $10,000. “These kids deserve the best and they’ve done a special thing and to be honest with you, it may never be repeated again.”

Categories: Local Sports, Sports

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