CHFP Weightlifting brought a squad of eight athletes to the American Open Finals in Anaheim, CA. This year's competition followed the 2017 IWF World Weightlifting Championships and was held on December 2-4 at the Anaheim Convention Center.
Emily Baskin [53 kg] got the team off to terrific start on Day 1. Emily put on a spectacular performance by going a perfect 6 for 6 with PRs in snatch [64 kg], the clean and jerk [88 kg] and total [152 kg].
14 year old Natalie Andrews [58 kg], among the youngest competitors at this year's American Open, delivered an incredibly impressive effort in the late session (essentially taking her final clean and jerk at 11:15 pm ET). But Natty was all business combining a PR snatch [68 kg] with a best clean and jerk of 77 kg to establish a new personal best total of 145 kg.
On Day 2, Onzy Elam II [85 kg] went 2 for 3 in the snatch and clean and jerk with best lifts of 118 kg and 148 kg. Nick Bailey [85 kg] got off to terrific start in the snatch going 3/3 with a PR 121 kg. In the clean and jerk, Nick made 2/3 with a best lift of 159 kg to tie his comp PR total of 280kg.
Day 2 momentum continued with Kat Lee [58 kg] who made easy work of her first five attempts and just missed a 100 kg PR attempt on her final CJ. The result was a 5/6 day, a 175 kg total and an impressive 7th place finish in the 58 kg class.
Justin Rittenhouse [94 kg] went 2/3 in the snatch to finish with a best lift of 126kg, and then went a perfect 3 for 3 in the clean and jerk to finish with a clutch PR at 174 kg. Justin's 300 kg total qualified him to compete at the 2018 National Championships.
AWESOME! Only way to describe youth athlete Avery Owens' [75 kg] performance at the American Open Finals. For the first time in her young lifting career, Avery was a perfect 6 for 6 with best lifts of 77 kg in the snatch and 99 kg in the clean and jerk.
Considering the great lifting by CHFP athletes over the three days of competition, it was tough to imagine it could get much better. But it did! After finishing with a best snatch of 86kg, Samantha Poeth [75 kg] lit it up in the clean and jerk going 3 for 3, tying her personal best at 121 kg, and earning the GOLD in that event. A terrific ending to this year's American Open Finals!