Wow– two months ago the Botetourt View wrote a story on the new strength and conditioning program at Lord Botetourt High School. Wow! What a difference two months can make. Even the untrained eye could see these guys have put on muscle. Coach Mark Harrison who leads the program and is assisted by Elton Toliver said, “This is a reflection of Coach Tater Benson’s desire to build a formidable football program at Lord Botetourt.”
The group of athletes who have come without missing one time is amazing. Called “Fighting Red” by Harrison, they include Zach McCarty, Phillip Unroe, Adam Golden, Anthony Sowers, Shawn Sowers, Alex Hampton, Zach Baker, Taylor Landes, Thomas Kennedy, Matt Bower, Sam Ross, Justin Brush, Patrick Boldand, Sam Finley and Willie Richardson. Around 60 young men from Read Mountain and LBHS come three times per week to train.
Two young men who are showing extreme dedication are Adam Golden and Shawn Gardener both of Blue Ridge. Bolden is a six foot rising sophomore who has gained up to 184 pounds of muscle and strength. “I am stronger and faster.” Better yet his attitude has improved. It is apparent Coach Harrison does not put up with foolishness, telling the students in a commanding voice “to address the reporter with politeness and respect.” Gardener is a 6″3 rising sophomore who has gained twenty pounds in muscle since he began the program in January from 161 to 181. What makes them unique is they come two times per day three days per week. Coming for a before school session at 6:45 a.m. and then in the afternoon at 3:30. Justin Roberts of Troutville is also doing his best. He goes to soccer in the afternoon but is coming to school before class to get in his strength and conditioning. All say they are stronger and faster because of the intense training.
#1 Elite –the strongest and perhaps the fastest is Matt Bower of Blue Ridge. He is the number one lifter. Bower said he has been weight lifting since 6th grade. A no nonsense kind of fellow who is very serious about football and getting stronger and better.
Said Gardner, “The LBHS Cavs football team will be a force to be reckoned with next fall.”