As a freshman last year, Harleton’s Balie Tingle qualified for the state powerlifting meet, along with senior teammate Eva Scott. However, they didn’t get a chance to perform at the state meet after schools and their sports were shut down due to COVID-19.
“It crushed them,” said Gary Parrish who’s now in his second year as Harleton’s head powerlifting coach. “When we initially got sent home, everybody was talking at the time that it was just going to be two weeks or whatever, they kept hoping. It did get rescheduled once or twice but before it approached, it did get canceled.”
“It really did suck because I was a freshman and making to state as a freshman is a huge excitement,” Tingle said. “It helped me push more and more for regionals to make state happen.”
Tingle and Scott accomplished just that as they will compete in the state meet today.
“We have a cycle that we run through and we don’t change that depending on if it’s an invitational meet, a regional meet or state meet,” Parrish said when asked how they’re approaching the state meet. “None of that stuff changes. We just stick our plan. As far as telling them what to do when we get there, they know the positions they’re sitting in are medal positions and both of them want to try to bring home a medal. Eva, being in second place is trying to win the state championship. It’s just the mentality of, ‘You know what you did to get here. You don’t have to do anything different.’ We’ve got to make sure that everything they do in practice, that meet is no different if it’s an invitational or a state meet. We do what we’re coached to do.”
Tingle also qualified for the state meet despite being hurt earlier in the season.
“At the first meet, I actually fell and tore my hip,” she said. “I missed three meets and actually got on the last one to qualify for regional. It was a huge motivation for me.”
Tingle and Scott hope to make the most of their time at the state meet and represent their school and community well.
“It’s a big deal to the kids because they want to put Harleton on the map for powerlifting,” Parrish said. “They didn’t have a team four years ago. They started the team three years ago. Last year when I got here, we won probably two or three meets with a full team. That was the first full team we had and this year we won every meet we went to.”
Perhaps the two Lady Cats will be able to add the state meet to their impressive resume.