PSJA North lifter signs college letter

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POSTED: Friday, June 7, 2013 - 5:08pm

UPDATED: Saturday, June 8, 2013 - 9:29am

Cristal Cabral of PSJA North High School is officially going to the University of Houston Downtown on a powerlifting scholarship. Cabral is a two-time state champion. 

"She's the most talented girl or boy I've ever coached," said Raiders coach David Duty. "The workouts I give them, a lot of girls will go hard for 30 minutes and they start to fade. Cristal gets better and better as the workouts go. She has no limit." 

Coach Duty knows what he's talking about. He's coached powerlifting for longer than Cabral has been alive.  

Cabral holds two state records: she benches 215 pounds. She totals 1,020 pounds in the bench, squat, and deadlift combined. 

The Raiders powerlifting team shares the weightroom with the football team. And they show her the proper respect.

"They go up to me and I'm about to do something or grab a plate, and they're about to grab it too, and they go, 'oh, I'm sorry, can't do this, state champ,'" Cabral said. 

Cristal used to run cross country. But doctors discovered she had a rapid heartbeat, which meant the end of her running career.  So as a sophomore, she took on powerlifting. And she's gotten pretty good at it.  

That year, she began lifting as much as former teammate Alex Camacho, then the state champion.

"I was like, wait, aren't you the state champion? I'm lifting the same thing you are!" Cabral recalls. 

Perhaps now she'll surprise some people at the college level. 

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