Top Brahmas

The East Bernard High School powerlifting team, Jesus Galvan, Nikals Schatz, Trey Steffens, Blake Jedlika, Raul Tavares, JR Schauer, Kameron Matthews, Casen Ivy, Hunter Kopecky, Andrew Dirba and Mark Glover, pictured with head coach Patrick Reinecke.

East Bernard High School competes at a high level in everything that the Brahmas put their mind to.

Powerlifting is no exception.

Head coach Patrick Reinecke’s squad qualified 11 lifters for the Region 4 Division 3 tournament last month at West Hardin High School.

The Brahmas had five lifters finish in the top five while sophomore Jesus Galvan earned a spot at the delayed state meet that has been pushed back to May 4.

The team lifted 4,000 pounds in total during the regional meet.

“We had a great season this year,” Reinecke said. “ We finished 5th as a team out of 25 high schools in our region. All of our lifters went all out at the regional meet.”

Galvan finished second in the 198-pound weight class, posting a total of 1,325 pounds with a 520 squat, 315 bench press and 490 deadlift.

“(J) had a great meet, he had new personal records in all three lifts,” Reinecke said. “He had to bump his weight up from 470 to 490 on his last attempt because he was competing with another lifter for that second spot.”

Niklas Schatz finished third in the 165-pound class with a total of 1,165 pounds. He lifted a 475 squat, 245 bench press and 445 deadlift.

Trey Steffens finished fourth in the 123-pound division with a final weight of 765. He lifted 315 squat, 180 bench press and 270 deadlift.

Blake Jedicka also finished fourth in his weight class, the 181-pound division. He posted weights of 405 in the squat, 240 in the bench press and 460 in the deadlift.

Raul Tavares was fourth in the 275-pound division with a score of 1,300, lifting 550 in the squat, 325 in the bench press and 425 in the deadlift.

JR Schauer was also fourth in the boys super heavyweight class with a total of 1,430. He recorded lifts of 565 in the squat, 395 in the bench press and 470 in the deadlift.

Kameron Matthews was seventh in the 132-pound division with a total of 875 while Casen Ivy was eighth in the 275-pound class with a total of 1,220.

Hunter Kopecky was ninth in the 114-pound class with a total of 525 and Andrew Dirba was 10th in the 148-pound class with a total of 915.

New normal

The question becomes for Reinecke and Galvan: what now? Everything is on hold because of the COVID-19 pandemic at least until May 4.

The East Bernard coaching staff sent home workouts for their athletes but mostly it’s based around body weight workouts. It will be tough to replicate the workouts needed for a state powerlifting competition.

“If we could get back in the weightroom, the biggest challenge is just getting the body back to the amount of weight that he is used to lifting,” Reinecke said.

That is also hope that the Texas High School Powerlifting Association can solve the issue of completing all of the regionals to have a state championship in 2020.

“The state meet had been pushed back to May 4th, but I really don’t see it happening this year, there are still regional meets that never got a chance to compete and qualify lifters,” Reinecke said.

But the fact Galvan is young allows for a lost sophomore campaign to not ruin a chance at a state title down the line.

And East Bernard will continue to push Galvan and the other Brahmas to a state level again.

“This is the second year in a row East Bernard has qualified a lifter for the state meet,” Reinecke said. “Our kids work really hard in East Bernard, so we just get ready for next year.”

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