Athletes showcase their strength

HOOVER &8212; You don&8217;t have to be a top Division I prospect to rip up your competition in a high school weight lifting challenge, just ask Kingwood Christian running back and linebacker Drew Davis.

Davis tore past Spain Park offensive lineman Michael Hogue and Pelham offensive guard Hugh Gould (16 reps each) with 22 reps in a 225-pound lift-off to determine second place in the the Takkle Bench Press Challenge at Hoover High School Friday.

Hogue, who stands at 6 feet 4 inches and 385 pounds, was previously in second place nation-wide in the Takkle.com online challenge. He took the early lead with 29 reps in the 185-pound lift competition, followed by the 6-foot, 285-pound offensive guard, Gould. Moments later Davis represented Kingwood as an individual and surprised those around with 29 reps, forcing the tie-break showdown for second place.

&8220;Drew Davis is a hauss,&8221; Gould said of his past elementary school classmate. &8220;I didn&8217;t think he&8217;d be that strong.&8221;

Davis, who lifted 28 reps in a February combine in Douglasville, Ga., was surprised by his tie-breaking performance.

&8220;Fresh I might can do 16 or 17 (reps of 225 pounds), but right now I don&8217;t know how I feel,&8221; Davis told Pelham&8217;s Theo Browder moments before the rip-off. About 15 minutes later it was a different story.

The 5-foot-10-inch, 205-pound Davis took the bench and began ripping off reps at a fast pace before yelling out, &8220;How many?&8221; The answer that awed his competitors was 17, and he kept going.

&8220;I guess something inside me got mad. All I know is I wanted to beat all of the &8216;fatties.&8217; I&8217;m fatigued now, but I&8217;m pumped up,&8221; said Davis, who has yet to receive attention from college recruits, but hopes to.

His father, Beau, was proud of his son&8217;s improvement since training him hard for 12 weeks following the end of football season.

&8220;There are some college players that can&8217;t do that. I&8217;m impressed with you son,&8221; the elder Davis said.

Other local players that were expected to compete, such as Spain Park&8217;s William Green and Chelsea&8217;s David Strider were attending weekend scouting camps instead.

Former Hoover Buc and University of Hawaii signee Korey Reynolds won the individual challenge with 34 reps of 185 pounds.

The event was the first of its kind for Takkle, an internet networking site for high school athletes.

&8220;We are glad we could do this here in Hoover. We thought it was just a no-brainer to do it here, because the football tradition is so loud and strong,&8221; said Ohad Jehassi, chief marketing officer for Takkle.