MARINE CORPS AIR GROUND COMBAT CENTER TWENTYNINE PALMS, Calif. -- The Combat Center’s Drug Demand Reduction Program/Drug and Alcohol Free Powerlifting Team took second place in the military team competition in the 2005 Amateur Athletic Union World Bench, Deadlift and Pushpull Championships Dec. 3 at the River Palms Resort Casino in Laughlin, Nev.
The world championship marked the team’s final competition of the year for the six-member-team in its first year of existence.
Unlike a traditional powerlifting competition where lifters attempt three different lifting styles, the bench press, the deadlift and the squat lift, the 2005 AAU World Championship did not include the squat lift.
Each member of the team placed in their respective weight classes making for another successful competition for the young team.
In their previous meet in June in Vista, Calif., at the AAU National Powerlifting Championship, the team also brought home the second place trophy in the team competition with each member placing in their respective weight classes, including a world record setting dead lift of 551 pounds set by team member Philip Smith.
David Roman, Combat Center drug demand reduction coordinator and team coach, competed as a member of the team and was proud of their performance.
“I think they did great,” said Roman after the award ceremony Saturday evening. “They did even better here than they did at nationals. I’m really grateful for these results. They worked hard to achieve them.”
In addition to each member taking either first or second place in their respective weight classes, two Marines set new military world records.
Wade Kisse, an instructor with Charlie Company, Marine Corps Communication-Electronics School, set a world record in the raw military 220-pound weight class with a 451.9-pound deadlift. In his next attempt he reset his own record with a 485-pound deadlift.
Also setting a new world record was Nicholas Rivera, who was competing in his last competition with the team due to permanent-change-of-station orders to Camp Pendleton with 1st Reconnaissance Battalion.
Rivera broke the old raw military 165-pound weight class world record of 336.2 pounds by deadlifting 342 pounds on his first attempt.
“I didn’t even realize it at the time when I broke the record, but it feels pretty good now after the fact,” Rivera said after the competition. “Now it’s finally starting to set in.”
In addition to countless hours spent in the weight room training for the competition, the team also made a commitment to abstain from drinking alcohol and using drugs, especially illegal performance enhancing substances.
“As a Marine, it’s not hard to stay away from using drugs,” said D.J. Wardwell, a team member and instructor with Charlie Company, MCCES. “Dave really promotes a drug free environment. It’s good to see people come out here and put up this much weight with their own strength.”
Remaining alcohol free was admittedly hard for some members of the team but having a support group of fellow powerlifters made it easier to abstain.
“It’s hard going out with friends that aren’t on the team that drink all the time, but that’s why I hang out with [my teammates] all the time,” said Chris Scherer, a reservist formerly with 1st Tank Battalion. “There’s a lot more things to do than drinking, and for me, this team is one of them.”
Although this successful season has come to a close, the team will be back in the weight room Jan. 17 and is always looking for male and female Marines and Sailors interested in joining.
“I’m looking for those who want to make a commitment to abstain from drugs and alcohol and who want to take it to the next level in powerlifting,” Roman said.