West Junior High ninth-grader Ruth Freiberg won a state title in weightlifting at the March 9 competition in Cannon Falls.
Freiberg participated in the 55 kilo weight class where she beat her competition by just one kilogram. It was a lift that she had never attempted before, so every ounce of power and adrenaline running through her body was used when it came time for that final lift. When it was over, she was shocked.
“I couldn’t believe I had just won state, I had accomplished something that I never thought I would do,” Freiberg said.
Heather Hvezda, weightlifting coach, describes Freiberg as a spunky go-getter. When they arrived at the state competition, Hvezda suggested Freiberg move up her starting weight in order to better match her opponent. Without hesitation, Freiberg agreed.
“She’s so coachable,” Hvezda said. “Anything I’d tell her to, she’d say ‘Okay, let’s do it.’”
The weightlifting club is new to the school district this year. Freiberg joined the team to improve her physical capabilities as a weightlifter and softball player. She hopes more people will consider joining the team next year.
“It’s a great after school activity and I strongly recommend it,” Freiberg said.