Invictus Weightlifting Team – AO3 Results & Reflections
Written by Ricky Moore & the Invictus Weightlifting Team

Wellllllll that was a weekend. I have a lot of mixed wonderful emotions about this past weekend’s American Open Series 3 virtual event. First off, I am EXTREMELY PROUD of every athlete who stepped on that platform. It was an unreal experience that I will never forget.  

Last summer I had a vision to qualify athletes for this competition because it was the closest national competition of the year, supposed to be in Vegas. At the beginning of the year the goal was to get eight athletes to qualify, we were fortunate enough to qualify 16. Eleven athletes participated which I am extremely grateful for and proud of. 

Every athlete came and LITERALLY “left everything on the platform”! No one shied away or bombed out. Everyone came out and made lifts and we had some AMAZING PR’s, qualifications and just overall great learning experiences. I would not trade that for anything.  

The crazy thing is all these athletes have overcome so many different things, just like millions of other people in this world, which is why I am overcome with emotion, pride and gratitude to lead these amazing, not just athletes, but human beings. The gyms were shut down for 88 days. We were communicating through – and I was coaching them through – Zoom and people were lifting in parking lots, parks, garages, sidewalks and other places. When the gyms opened back up we were only allowed to be in our parking lot which some days were 95+ degree heat and sketchy squat racks made from Lowes/Home Depot buckets and 2 x 4s. 

We joked around as it being a summer camp but it was all business and these amazing humans absolutely rose to the task at hand and crushed it. With what has happened over the past 9 months I know that these athletes and the community we have here at Invictus is only going to make us strong in the years to come.  

Invictus Weightlifting Team

AO3 Results & Reflections

James Adrian 

73kg A Session – Swept Gold in Snatch, C&J and Total in Master 40-44 Category – Qualified for Master Nationals

Thanks [Ricky], I am grateful, bummed, hyped and humbled at the same time! Learned countless things I would only learn from experience. Gained confidence in a very dark place almost bombing out. I’m ultimately left feeling motivated to train smarter and harder than before. I’m definitely growing as an athlete and weightlifter. Thanks for being a great friend and coach.

Aaron Alfaro 

73kg A Session – 3rd in the Total, 2nd in the C&J – Qualified for American Open Finals

Cynthia Yantz

59kg A Session – 6th Place – PR’d total by 13kgs – Qualified for U25 Nationals

When AO3 in Vegas was cancelled and changed to virtual I was really bummed. Little did I know that AO3 at Invictus would be one of the best lifting environments I will ever be in. To be surrounded by the Invictus members, the entire team, and the coaches who have seen all of your dedicated hard work made it one of the most memorable competition experiences I’ll ever have. Everyone there was so supportive, we have the best hype team you could ever ask for. I will never ever forget this competition, and it will always be my favorite birthday memory. 

Read more about Cynthia’s weightlifting journey: A Lifter, Her Barbell & Her Coach

Dave Cormier

81kg C Session – 11th Place – 6 FOR 6 – PR’d total by 17kgs 

Noah Mancini 

81kg B Session – 12th Place – PR’d total by 16kgs – Qualified for U25 Nationals

I have never felt energy like that, and the whole team crushed it!! Everyone showed up to support everyone’s lifts, it was like a family!

Read more about Noah’s weightlifting journey: Hooked on Lifting

Coach Lalo Torres

81kg B Session – 6th Place – First ever meet!

Ashlie Pankonin

64kg A Session – 5th Place – PR’d total in New Weight Class

Nairobi Romero 

64kg A Session – 2nd in the Total, 2nd in the C&J – Qualified for Nationals and American Open Finals – PR’d total by 7kgs – 6 FOR 6

Samie Avecedo

12th Place finish – Qualified for American Open Series 

Read more about Samie: Broadening Beauty: Women Who CrossFit & Self-Image

Marqueze Lutz 

96kg B Session – 7th Place – PR’d Total by 15kgs

My experience from this weekend was a beauty! I feel like I gained a little family and the best part is we all have support for one another’s dreams as if we’ve known one another. Being the new guy I absolutely felt for my squad and every single person treated me with genuine love and that’s something you can’t take for granted! I look forward to growing with you guys and being there to support no matter what comes our way!

Deveney Wells-Gibson

87kg A Session – 2nd Place in the Total, 2nd Place in the Snatch, 1st Place in C&J – Qualified for American Open Finals – 6 FOR 6

Such an amazing experience lifting with an incredibly humble, strong, and supportive crew! The coaching is unmatched and the community at Invictus is like no other! 

Brad Brown, Team Manager

Two words. Stronger. Together.

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Stanley P. Fritsch
Stanley P. Fritsch
September 27, 2020 4:56 pm