Coming off a state title at the Wisconsin High School Powerlifting meet in Appleton in March, Elkhorn Area High School junior Jessica Haggerty had big goals after that event.
Namely? Win a national title a few weeks later.
Haggerty did exactly that, winning the 114-pound weight class at the Powerlifting America High School Nationals in Scranton, Pennsylvania over the weekend.
The junior wasn’t the only one having a big day. Addi Griffiths and Alex Fechter both competed at the USA Powerlifting national meet in South Carolina.
Haggerty chose to compete at the national event in Scranton, as there were two different competition. Elkhorn powerlifting coach Chad Stoltz confirmed Haggerty’s total in Scranton would have also won her weight class in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.
“I was really happy with it. Obviously, there’s always something to work on,” Haggerty said. “I PR’ed in all of my lifts.
“I was really happy with it at the end of the day,” she added. “My training led up to this and I felt pretty fulfilled with that.”
She lifted 270 pounds in the squat portion of the competition, bench-pressed 165 pounds and dead-lifted 286.5 pounds.
Her total of 722 pounds exceeded the 703 pounds she lifted at the state meet. The state meet results were recorded as kilograms, with 319.5 KG recorded.
Given that Haggerty weighs all of 113 pounds, she lifted several times her own body weight total.
Haggerty has just been training seriously for just about a year, making an immediate impact in her chosen sport. She used to play volleyball.
“Once I found my knack in powerlifting, I focused in on that,” Haggerty said.
She said that consistency in training and trust in her coaches has helped her make it through the rough training days she has put in.
The junior also has pretty big goals. The win at nationals has put Haggerty on the map, and she wants to represent the United States internationally in major competition.
“The goal is making the Worlds team for the USA,” Haggerty said.
Griffiths, another junior, was also coming off strong performances at state, where she finished fourth in the heavyweight division.
At the USAPL meet, she finished seventh in her division.
Fechter, meanwhile, finished 11th at the state meet but improved all the way to ninth at the national meet.
Specific weights lifted and final results for the two girls were not available by press deadline.