Coach confident Cavazos can kill competition off at state
EXPECTATIONS of a rebuilding year were greatly off the mark for Dickinson powerlifting coach Earl Ricicar, who started the season with only two returning lifters after the Gators won the division I state championship in 2015 and came within a point of repeating the feat last year.
Instead, his new batch of talent resulted in three Dickinson performers heading to Abilene for Saturday’s championships.
He told The Post on Monday: “This has turned out better than I originally expected. The kids have really improved as the season progressed to the point where I don’t feel like this was a rebuilding year at all. Since the last half of February, they have really come together.”
Perhaps the anchor of the Gators’ ability to continue holding their weight among the state’s premier programs has been the effort of junior Pablo Cavazos, who returns to Abilene after finishing in the top half of the 148lb class last March.
One of the veterans on the Dickinson squad, Cavazos finished third in the regional meet at Katy Taylor high school on March 4 and, in Ricicar’s eyes, is a strong candidate for a top-five finish.
The Gators are well represented in the 220lb class, in which both sophomores Daniel Parr and Jose Rodriguez have advanced to state.
Each finished with a total of 1,450lb at the regional meet and were able to grab the last two qualifying positions.
Ricicar said: “Both Daniel and Jose are young but I think they have an outside chance of getting into the top five”.
As good as this season has been for Dickinson, Ricicar is excited about the future, as all but two of his lifters will return. The Gators will also be bringing in an athletically gifted crop of freshmen in August, with a bushel of them having, as Ricicar points out, “a lot of size”.
Dickinson won’t be the only area school with lifters competing for state titles. Clear Brook’s Kevin Nguyen won the regional crown in the 242lb class and is a strong contender to top the state field. Beau Ramos of Texas City is competing in the 181lb class.
Josh Paige of Hitchcock won the region IV, division III championship in the 114lb field, while Bulldogs teammate Xavian Hampton qualified in the 242lb class.