Bussard Overcomes Car Accident To Win Championships

Emerson Marcus

Jenna Bussard admits that she was very lucky.

The freshman weightlifter from Savannah Technical College was in a car accident last month when a drunk driver t-boned her friend’s car. Bussard, who wasn’t wearing a seatbelt, went through the backside window and rolled into a ditch.

Bussard didn’t suffer any major injuries from the car accident. She left the incident with a few bruises, but didn’t have to go to the hospital.

“He hit us going about 60,” she said.

Bussard competed in the senior nationals the same weekend after the car accident in Columbus, Ohio.

“I did really bad that meet,” Bussard said.

One month later, Bussard competed in the USA Weightlifting National Collegiate Weightlifting Championships on Sunday at the Downtown Reno Ball Room in Reno, NV.

Bussard won the 75+kg snatch and clean and jerk lift. She lifted 90 kg in the snatch and 121 kg …


Men’s 77-kg Stole the Show on Saturday

Brian Neppl

Competitors gathered on Saturday for the second day of competition at the USA Weightlifting National Collegiate Weightlifting Championships at the Downtown Reno Ball Room in Reno, NV, part of the CBS College Sports Collegiate Nationals.

Saturday’s events were the men’s 77-kg, which was split up into A and B sessions. The two sessions were split into another two sessions using their total weight lifted. Weightlifters lifting under 210-kg in the qualifier were put in session B and lifters lifting over that were put in session A.

The men’s 77-kg session was exciting as Chandler Alford, lifting for Georgia Tech, won first place on his first lift in the clean and jerk. He lifted a total weight of 294-kg. Alford will be attending the Olympic trials in May.

Finishing in second place in the 77-kg weight division was Justin Brimhall, lifting out of Northern Michigan University, who fell into …


LSU-Shreveport Has Strong Showing on Opening Day

Brian Neppl

Weightlifters from across the United States came to the biggest little city in the world on Friday to compete in the USA Weightlifting National Collegiate Weightlifting Championships at the Downtown Reno Ball Room in Reno, NV.

“It’s a great time with high quality lifting,” Truman State head coach Alex Koch said.

The weightlifting championships feature more than 150 participants with eight men’s weight divisions and seven women’s weight divisions. Koch said that the number of weightlifters attending the Championships is up 10 percent from last year.

“There are a lot of national champs lifting this weekend, which is great,” he said.

Friday’s men’s weight divisions were 56 kg, 62 kg, and 69 kg. The Women’s weight divisions were 48 kg, 53 kg, and 58 kg.

Henry Brower dominated the 69 kg weight class, hoisting up a 125 kg on the snatch lift and a 150 kg on the …


Weightlifting: Weight on her shoulders

Matt Forman, The Daily Northwestern

When most high school seniors are searching for colleges, proximity to an elite weightlifting training facility is not a main concern.

Northwestern freshman Natalie Friend’s father gave her only two options: train at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo., or go to NU and train with fitness guru Mike Gattone. Since making the decision, Friend has excelled as a weightlifter and student.

Friend won the USA Weightlifting National Junior Championships in Chattanooga, Tenn., on February 9. She lifted 80 kilograms in the snatch, and 102 kgs in the clean and jerk. She was named the competition’s “Best Lifter” due to her total of 182 kgs.

In the snatch, Friend does an explosive move where she lifts the bar from the floor to over her head in less than one second. An 80 kg snatch translates to lifting 176 pounds, or slightly …


Student-Athletes Carry Heavy Load

Northwestern’s Natalie Friend

Ashley Heisler

Imagine stumbling into a strenuous, physically exhausting and demanding sport by chance and finding out you’re a natural.

Collin Ito of Northern Michigan University began weightlifting in the eighth grade. He was too big to play football and “did not fit into the other sports,” he says.

Natalie Friend, a student at Northwestern University, started weightlifting when she was thirteen and has not looked back. She was running track when her coach sent her to weightlifting training in the off season.

Fast-forward to present day. Ito attended and competed in the Sicily Trophy Tournament on the Junior National Team and currently trains at the United States Olympic Education Center, making what he likes to call “decent progress”. He trains nine times a week doing squats, pulls, deadlifts, powerlifts, and overall bodybuilding.

Friend is also a member of the Junior National Team. She stressed the importance …