U.S. Weightlifting Team Brings Home Medals And Records From Tokyo
by Bob Reinert
Kate Nye competes at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 on Aug. 1, 2021 in Tokyo.
A pair of medals and a number of American records will be coming home from Tokyo with the eight-member U.S. Olympic weightlifting team.
Kate Nye led the way with a silver medal in the women’s 76 kg. class. Her snatch of 111 kg., clean and jerk of 138 kg. and total of 249 kg. were all American records.
The 22-year-old Nye, who missed three weeks of training earlier this year with a back injury, bounced back in impressive fashion, posting the best U.S. weightlifting result in 21 years.
Nye became the first U.S. women's weightlifter to win Olympic silver and the fourth medalist since women's weightlifting was added to the Olympic program in 2000. It was also the first medal for an American in the women's light heavyweight division.
“It feels surreal,” said Nye, who won the world championship in 2019. “I feel like I’ve had such a whirlwind of a quad, starting weightlifting in 2016. So, the fact that I’m here in 2021 with a medal around my neck is unreal.”
Sarah Robles competes at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 on Aug. 2, 2021 in Tokyo.
Sarah Robles became the first American woman to win two Olympic medals, claiming her second bronze in as many Games by placing third in the women’s +87 kg. class. She tied the American record with a snatch of 128 kg. and added a clean and jerk of 154 kg. for a total of 282 kg.
“It’s a really big deal,” Robles said. “I’ve struggled a lot throughout my career. It almost feels like I’ve been going uphill both ways with the wind against me. Going from the bottom in the sport, to the top in the sport, to making history in this sport means a lot to me.”
In the highest finish by a U.S. man since 1988, Harrison Maurus placed fourth in the 81 kg. class. He posted a snatch of 161 kg. and a clean and jerk of 200 kg. for a total of 361 kg.
“Being on the Olympic stage changed everything,” Maurus said. “I felt great out there. It was probably one of my most consistent meets I’ve had, ever.”
Wes Kitts competes at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 on Aug. 3, 2021 in Tokyo.
Competing in the men’s 109 kg. class, Wes Kitts set an American record of 177 kg. in the snatch. He lifted 213 kg. in the clean and jerk for a total of 390 kg. Kitts now owns all three American records in the class.
His eighth-place finish was his highest in global competitions.
“Overall, it’s all right. It’s not my best total,” Kitts said. “When you come to the Olympics, I think everyone wants to do their absolute best, so it’s a little disappointing. I had a tough year. We trained hard. I feel pretty good.”
Two-time world silver medalist Mattie Rogers placed sixth in the women’s 87 kg. class with a snatch of 108 kg., clean and jerk of 138 kg., and a total of 246 kg.
Clarence Cummings Jr competes at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 on July 28, 2021 in Tokyo.
In the men’s 73 kg. class, CJ Cummings finished ninth. His numbers included 145 kg. in the snatch, 180 kg. in the clean and jerk, and a total of 325 kg.
Caine Wilkes competes at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 on Aug. 4, 2021 in Tokyo.
Caine Wilkes finished third in Group B of the +109 kg class. He had a snatch of 173 kg. and a clean and jerk of 217 kg. for a total of 390 kg and ninth place overall.
Jourdan Delacruz competes at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 July 24, 2021 in Tokyo.
In the women’s 49 kg. class, Jourdan Delacruz began with a snatch of 86 kg. that placed third but then had three failed attempts in the clean and jerk.
Want to follow Team USA athletes during the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020? Visit TeamUSA.org/Tokyo2020 to view the medal table, results and competition schedule.
Bob Reinert spent 17 years writing sports for The Boston Globe. He also served as a sports information director at Saint Anselm College and Phillips Exeter Academy. He is a contributor to TeamUSA.org on behalf of Red Line Editorial, Inc.