Girl Power: Nacogdoches freshman becomes first female powerlifter for school

NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) - What started off as curiosity has become something historic for Nacogdoches freshman Victoria Garner.

Garner recently qualified for the regional High School Powerlifting meet that will be held in Longview in March. She will compete against 12 other girls. Some of them have been to regionals before. Garner has not. In fact, no girl from Nacogdoches High School has been.

"I did some research and I have talked to coaches who have been here 30-plus years and no one can remember there ever being a female student do this," Coach Jacob Jefferies said.

Garner is currently ranked 6th in the region. She had not even thought about it until the day Nacogdoches held a meet.

"I was walking to my English class and my teacher pulled me aside and said this might be something I would want to try," Garner said. "I thought about it and decided to give it a shot. I have been doing crossfit since the 5th grade so I did have some knowledge of all this."

Jefferies had never worked with a girl on his team but was open to it.

"I am friends with her teacher so when I was told that she might do it I was not shocked I was inquisitive," Jefferies said. "I had heard that she was strong and this could work."

Last week, Garner was able to seal her spot in the regional. Jefferies was not surprised.

"It is all great," Garner said. "Not only being able to qualify but to do this in the first place was definitely a God thing."

Garner may be the first, but she won't be the last.

"She has laid the foundation," Jefferies said. "Because of her lifting I probably have no less than 15-20 girls ask about it."

Realistically, regionals might be the last stop this year but Garner is young in her  sport.

"She hasn't hit that ceiling," Jefferies said. "We still haven't ;found that ceiling. We don't know what the top number she can do. Every week she is getting better. I think by the time she is a senior, she will be in Waco lifiting for state."

The regional girls meet will be March 3 in Longview.

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