CrossFit Milford Team Conquer Gears Up For 2023 CrossFit Games After Taking Last Qualifying Spot at North America East Semifinal
When competition concluded for the teams at the 2023 North America East Semifinals, the majority of those at the top knew they had made the cut for the summer’s CrossFit Games in Madison, WI. But not CrossFit Milford Team Conquer, who only learned during the formal announcement on Saturday that they officially secured the 10th and final qualifying spot.
Tears of joy and relief were visible from all team members—Tony Facchini, Jay Adams, Nicki Torreggiani, and Sierra Cameron—when the announcement came. It was an emotional moment, especially for Adams, who has been trying to get to the Games for over ten years. The team only came together a year ago, but after a lot of work and long training sessions, it all paid off.
Remind me: CrossFit Milford Team Conquer was tied with 8th Day CrossFit in points for the 10th place spot, however it came down to the Team Test 5 tie breaker, which would ultimately give CrossFit Milford Team Conquer the advantage. The team took 10th place in Quarterfinals, 23rd worldwide.
- “We really came together as a team and we did literally everything we possibly could. We didn’t have another point to spare,” said Facchini.
- “It was super emotional. All of that hard work that we put in all this season. All the time spent traveling and everything that we have done up to this point, it really hit us all right at that moment when they announced our name.”
- “I would say it was one of the most amazing experiences I’ve had as an athlete.”
Facchini is the only Games veteran on the team, he competed on Team CrossFit Milford in 2022 and they took 14th place. Team member Sierra Cameron said, “My biggest motivation during the long training days, and over this past season, was to bring each one of these people to the Games.” Cameron, who is a full-time registered nurse, has been trying to qualify since 2018 and says this “is an absolute dream come true.”
The group of four came together in the fall of 2022 when Facchini and Cameron began training alongside Adams and Torreggiani. The more they trained together, the more it became clear this would be the CrossFit Milford Games team for the season. The team follows programming from Conquer Athlete and are coached by Jason Leydon and Tommy Pomatico.
Each athlete has a 60- to 90-minute commute to the gym where they train together, but they have made it a priority to find the time, and have built a strong bond. “I knew that we could make the Games, and I thought that even from the start,” said Facchini. “I used to tell these guys all the time we have what it takes.”
Torreggiani is the newest to CrossFit on the team, only starting to train the sport fully in 2021. She has a background in weightlifting, but it wasn’t until Pomatico, one of the team’s coaches and her boyfriend, convinced her to give it a try.
- “I was so strong and sustained, I’ll never do it, I’ll never do it,” said Torreggiani. “And then finally I was like, alright, if I do this, I’m giving up everything. I’m really doing this and I want to be competitive in it and I made that choice. I never looked back.”
- She added, “It’s more than just I’m trying to improve for myself, I don’t want to let my team down, so the dynamic between all of us is incredible.”
- “When they called our names that we actually made it I have never experienced anything in my life like that.”
- “But at the same time, as much as you don’t want to be that team that has to scratch and claw and fight to get that spot, I don’t know if it would have felt the same if we got it any other way.”
Adams, a coach for The Training Plan and CrossFit Union Square, is the oldest member of the team at 35, and has fought for a spot at the Games for almost 12 years. “Part of my reasoning for committing to compete this year was I knew we had a real shot to make it,” he said.
- While he has attempted to qualify as both an individual and on a team, this was the big year for him to make waves, as this will be his last season.
- “Just getting to Semifinals, while incredibly difficult and admirable, was not going to be enough of a reason for me to dedicate the energy and effort that I have into this season.”
While each team member had a personal goal to make it to Madison, they all shared one commonality—to get Adams to the Games—knowing it was likely his final shot. “It’s humbling,” he said, “that helping me qualify was a motivating factor for them.”