By Justin Hunter
CHURUBUSCO — Many sports at Churubusco High School are trending up, and many believe it’s because of the athletes’ increased use of the weight room.
“Not everybody buys into it, so those who do have had success,” said Athletic Director Paul Sade. “The ones who haven’t bought into it haven’t won many games. We’re trying to get all the teams and coaches on board with this.”
Churubusco saw improvement across the board when it added four weightlifting classes during the school day. The athletes starting from junior high are encouraged to lift weights before or after school hours.
Strength and conditioning coach Zach Dock has had his position for 11 years. He says one of the biggest reasons Churubusco has had success is from the weight room.
Dock is a strong believer that those who work hard in the weight room are the ones performing the best in competition.
“The guys who work the hardest in the weight room perform the best. For instance, Jalen Paul, Sam Richards, Zach Bultemeier and Nick Murphy are all four-year weight room guys that spent their time as well as they could have in their careers here.”
Dock also believes that the hard work that pours into lifting weights teaches the students to stay cool under pressure, and even gives life lessons.
“When these kids are working their tails off in a 95-degree room early in the morning — when our football players are up against 3rd-and-15 they can say, ‘we’ve been in much harder situations in the weight room,’” Dock said. “These kids work incredibly hard and they go off and graduate and it transfers over to the real world.”
The most successful moment in Churubusco sports this year came when the Eagles won their first boys’ basketball sectional title in its 99-year history. Head coach Chris Paul credits Dock for all the training his players were put through.
“I was impressed with what I saw from coach Dock when I got here,” said Paul. “He had guys coming in at 6:30 a.m. during the summer. I trusted his process. I give all the credit to him, he did everything.”
Paul isn’t the only believer in what Dock has provided for Churubusco athletics. Sade sees the connection between the weight room and the performance on the hard wood floor.
“It’s not a coincidence that the first time we get the majority of the basketball team in here, we win a sectional championship.”