By Jordan Kroeger, SunCoast Sports
DELAND — Ron Feril pleasantly surprised himself at Saturday’s Class 1A state weightlifting meet.
And Logan Lydic got some redemption.
Both Lemon Bay lifters found themselves on the podium with a medal around their necks at the end of the afternoon, with Feril taking fourth place in the 183-pound weight class and Lydic finishing fifth in the 139 class.
Lemon Bay finished tied for 13th as a team with five points. Madison County won the team title with 22 points, edging Baker County by a point.
Lydic, a junior, medaled one year after missing the podium by one spot with a seventh-place finish.
“Nobody works harder than that kid. It’s not a state championship, but being so close last year, it kind of feels like one,” Lemon Bay coach Don Southwell said. “Knowing the work that he puts in and seeing him get a medal today was pretty special.”
Lydic tied his personal-best on the bench press with a 235 to go along with a 205 clean and jerk for a 240 total. He took fifth on a tiebreaker with Eustis’ Terrance Demps via weigh-in.
“I’m so excited because this was my goal all year long, to get a medal. I did it and now it’s time to get first. That’s my next goal.” Lydic said.
While Lydic expected to make the podium, Feril was in a bit of disbelief when he found out he did.
“I thought I’d be around seventh and fight for sixth. After my coach gave me the papers with all the (seeding), I thought I’d have to get 5 to 20 pounds up on my bench and clean and jerk to even place sixth,” Feril said.
Feril did just that.
He set personal-bests on his bench press (325 pounds) and clean and jerk (255) to finish with a 580 total. He took fourth place on a tiebreaker with Fort Meade’s Stephon Fulse via weigh-in.
The junior sat in third place after the bench press and remained there for most of the clean and jerk, only to get surpassed by Justin Raysin from Keystone Heights on his final clean and jerk. The scores remained so close that Feril couldn’t even look at the scoreboard.
“I was trying to stay away from it because I didn’t want to make myself anxious,” Feril said. “I checked the board after the benches and I had the third highest bench and I knew I would start low on the clean and jerk but I didn’t want to look at it and get disappointed.”
That’s OK, because Southwell was anxious enough for the two of them as he constantly watched the scoreboard.
“I was studying it pretty good,” Southwell said. “But I like that he wasn’t worried about that because so much of that you can’t control so I’m glad he’s heard the message ‘control what you can control, stay in the moment and go do your best.’
“I didn’t expect him to place coming in to be honest with you. He was (seeded) eighth coming in so that was a big surprise and a great accomplishment.”
Brayden Curry also had a chance to medal for Lemon Bay but had an off day with the bar. He hit his first bench press of 290 but missed his next two attempts. The same thing happened on his clean and jerk, where he hit his first rep of 260 but then missed consecutive reps.
Curry, who was seeded 10th heading into the meet, could have very well been on the medal stand had he completed those attempts.
“If I would’ve gotten those lifts I would’ve gotten sixth but because I didn’t I got tenth,” Curry said. “I just didn’t have a good day overall but I still had fun.”
Caleb Cooper also finished 10th in the 119 class for Lemon Bay, exceeding expectations considering he was seeded 16th coming into the meet. Robbie Cerami placed 11th at 219 while teammate Treston Kopp was 14th at 169.
CLASS 1A STATE WEIGHLIFTING
at DeLand High School
1. Madison County 22; 2. Baker County 21; 3. Keystone Heights 14; T-4. Interlachen 9, Union County 9; 6. Bradford 8.
T-13. Lemon Bay 5.
119: Santiago Morales (LaBelle) 200-230-430. 129: D’Marques Johnson (Cedar Creek) 230-235-465. 139: Michael Hensley (Wewahitchka) 270-220-490. 154: Dalton Simon (Baker County) 305-265-570. 169: Clayton Canady (Baker County) 310-275-585. 183: Kima McDaniel (Madison County) 355-275-630. 199: Seth Bradshaw (Pedro Menedez) 325-320-645. 219: Diante Hartsfield (Madison County) 380-310-690. 238: Dillon O’Neill (Cardinal Mooney) 415-275-690. HWT: Joel Makatura (Interlachen) 410-330-740.