May 30, 2014
North East Update: Day 1
By Keka Schermerhorn

New names show promise on Day 1 of the North East Regional. 





This morning, CrossFit Virtuosity took the field by storm. After finishing the Open in 26th place, the team sits in third place overall at the end of Day 1. The excitement continued with the individual competition. 

On the men’s side, Austin Malleolo is looking not only for an invitation back to Carson, but for his fourth consecutive first-place finish in the North East. Noticeably absent are last year’s second- and third-place finishers, Daniel Tyminski, who competed with CrossFit Lindy this morning, and Eric Magee who is out due to injury.

As we have seen in the past few weeks, one mistake on Day 1 can be impossible to overcome.

A botched snatch, a falter on the handstand walk, or a struggle on the muscle-ups or pistols have put an early end to several athletes' seasons.


Events 1 and 2

The men had six minutes and three attempts at establishing a one-rep-max hang squat snatch.

Patience was rewarded as athletes who took the time to stabilize at the bottom position before standing up from the squat were more likely to be awarded a successful lift.

Spencer Hendel came into the event with a 295-lb. recorded hang snatch and the drive to make it back to the podium after missing out on it by two points in 2013. He stood up with a 300-lb. snatch, but couldn’t show control, and ended up stepping out of his mat, resulting in a no-rep. His successful 285-lb. snatch was enough to earn him a win on Event 1.

“It was heartbreaking,” Hendel said. “But I knew today was my day. I didn’t want to dwell on today. I have the whole weekend ahead of me and I wanted to prove that even though I’m a big guy, I can do the little guy stuff. I wanna show I can compete with Austin (Malleolo).”

After a quick transition out of their Olympic lifting shoes and into Nanos, or in some cases just socks, the men lined up for their max-distance handstand walk.

The mats were dangerously hot, with numerous athletes burning their hands despite wearing thick gloves.

The true spirit of CrossFit was on display when 19-year-old Cody Mooney offered up his gloves to Carl Appel.

“They definitely helped,” Appel said. “It was a lot hotter than expected and I saw some guys coming off with rips on their hands. I’ve never made it that far. I was hoping for 90 and was so excited to hit 120.”

Event 1 Results
1. Spencer Hendel (285)
2. Mathew Fraser (275)
3. Trevor James (275)

Event 2 Results
1. Austin Malleolo (325)
2. James Hobart (315)
3. Mathew Fraser (285)

Event 3

Nasty Girls V2 is the younger and decidedly nastier sister to the original triplet of air squats, muscle-ups and power cleans.

For the majority of the athletes, Nasty Girls V2 was all about the pistols.

Malleolo, who badly burned his hands on Event 2, was neck-and-neck with James Hobart until the last set of cleans.

“I went as hard as I could,” Malleolo said. “I just didn’t have enough left at the end.”

Hobart  added: “These guys, Mat (Fraser) and Austin, they were so fast on the pistols and that last set  I was doing five, catching my breath, doing five. I was hoping to get a break on the muscle-ups and I did, and then I knew I could do the cleans unbroken.”

Fraser, who came in to the weekend with a pec injury, set a new record of 6:58 Event 3, beating Josh Bridges’ previous record of 7:01 despite the pain through the muscle-ups.

“Yesterday was the first time I’ve tested muscle-ups in about four weeks,” Fraser said. “I never got it officially diagnosed, but I heard something tear and I stopped doing all upper body stuff for about three weeks. Then I started testing dips. It was very nerve wrecking. I had no idea what the world record was. My time here was about 50 seconds faster than it’s been in practice.”

Event 3 Results
1. Mathew Fraser (7:01)
2. James Hobart (7:35)
3. Austin Malleolo (8:00)

Overall Standings
1. Mathew Fraser (6)
2. James Hobart (17)
3. Craig Kenney (19)
4. Joe Kearney (22)
5. Spencer Hendel (27)
6. Austin Malleolo (30)
7. Nicholas DelGrande (30)
8. Anthony Vorachak (32)
9. Trevor James (39)
10. Tim Paulson (40)


Events 1 and 2

Dani Horan had planned on opening with 165-lb. hang snatch, and following it with 175 lb. and 185 lb., but after hurting her back weeks ago, her game plan changed. 

She opened with 155 lb., hit the 165 lb., and was no-repped on the 175 lb. Fortunately for her, 165 lb. was still good enough for a first-place tie in the event.

Megin Oczkowski, also planned on opening with 165 lb. on the snatch, but ended up having to settle for it as her highest lift.

“I hit three for three,” Oczkowski said. “It wasn’t what I planned. I initially planned to open with 165 but I was going one-for-one in warm-up, and I was missing them. So, I decided to go safe and consistent.” 

Former gymnast Rachel Martinez, trained with event holder Katrin Davidsdottr, and won Event 2, walking 375 ft.

“There is a little bit of a handstand walk rivalry with Davidsdottir,” Martinez said. “Her shoulders recover faster than mine do, but I walk faster than her. We actually talked about it beforehand. She talked me through the event and gave me tips. I hadn’t ever walked as far as I just did.”

Event 1 Results
1. Dani Horan (165)
2. Megin Oczkowski (165)
3. Sheila Barden (160)

Event 2 Results
1. Rachel Martinez (375)
2.Rachel Goldenberg (310)
3.Megin Oczkowski (275)

Event 3

The wind was blowing hard, as the women took on Nasty Girls V2, and while the event was won and lost on the pistols for the men, it was all about the rings for the women.

Rachel Goldenberg, was in second place for the first two rounds of the event, but pulled ahead on her third set of muscle-ups to place second overall on Event 3.

“I just wanted to keep speed with the pistols,” Goldenberg said. “And stay within 10 reps of Keidy (Toomey) make every rep count.”

Kaleena Ladeairous, who came into the weekend in first place after the Open, tied for ninth place on the snatch, placed 13th in Event 2, stumbling after 75 ft., and finished Nasty Girls V2 in ninth place, after struggling with the muscle-ups.

“(The plan was) to go unbroken,” Ladeairous said. “But that just didn’t happen. The rings felt wide. The  wind might have been a factor.”

Martinez went rep-for-rep with Sheila Barden, until her second set of muscle-ups, when she came off the ring with only one rep to go.

“That was so much harder than I remember in practice,” Martinez said. “I ripped on the first muscle-up. I went out fast. That was the plan, but I didn’t plan on breaking up the second set. I thought I was dying.”

Barden, who did go unbroken on her muscle-ups, set a new Event 3 record of 6:54, beating the previous record of 7:06 set by Camille Leblanc-Bazinet.

“It was textbook, just like I wanted,” Barden said. “I knew the last round I would have to break up either the muscle-ups or the cleans. Luckily, I got the seventh muscle-up and I had a few seconds to play with, so I was able to cycle five cleans, catch my breath, and cycle the last five. I didn’t want to know where I was coming into the event, I just knew this workout, and wanted to come out, and to do work. And for the record, it’s the first time I’ve even beat Mat Fraser in a workout!”

Event 3 Results
1. Sheila Barden (6:54)
2. Rachel Goldenberg (9:18)
3. Rachel Martinez (9:36)

After proving their worth in strength, skill and strategy, new names came to the top of the Leaderboard, and some perennial favorites will have a hard time fighting their way back to the top.

Overall Standings
1. Rachel Martinez (9)
2. Dani Horan (9)
3. Sheila Barden (13)
4. Rachel Goldenberg (13)
5. Megin Oczkowski (14)
6. Jessa Lemoine (25)
7. Keidy Toomey (27)
8. Kaleena Ladeairous (31)
9. Lauren Conner (33)
10. Cheryl Nasso (36)