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Panchik Twins Qualify for CrossFit Games in Heartwarming Fashion

 
Morning Chalk Up

May 30   |   POWERED BY

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Good morning and welcome to the Morning Chalk Up. Week two of the semifinals are in the books as the CrossFit Fittest in Cape Town and the Mid-Atlantic CrossFit Challenge have both wrapped, but don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.

In today’s edition:

  • Brotherly love as Panchik twins qualify for CrossFit Games via MACC
  • Michelle Merand wins a captivating “Battle of the Michelles” in South Africa
  • Josh Bridges talks about his iconic Murph performance back in 2016
  • Rookie Rebecca Fuselier is heading to her first CrossFit Games
  • CrossFit Mayhem qualifies third team to the Games
 
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“My motto is: Contented with little, yet wishing for more.” - Charles Lamb

 
SEMIFINALS WEEK TWO - WHO QUALIFIED?

The second week of semifinals for the 2022 NOBULL CrossFit Games is in the books, as the Mid-Atlantic CrossFit Challenge and Fittest in Cape Town are all over. Here’s who qualified, and who is also now in for the Last Chance Qualifier:

Mid-Atlantic CrossFit Challenge

  1. Saxon Panchik | Danielle Brandon | CrossFit Mayhem Independence
  2. Dallin Pepper | Sydney Michalyshen | CrossFit Shoofly Storm Squadron
  3. Cole Sager | Baylee Rayl | Kamo Athletics CrossFit
  4. Noah Ohlsen | Brooke Wells | Koda CrossFit United
  5. Spencer Panchik | Rebecca Fuselier | CrossFit Kilo II

Fittest in Cape Town

  1. Kealan Henry | Michelle Merand | CrossFit Commit Okavango

Last Chance Qualifier

  1. Jason Smith | Christina Livaditakis
  2. Darren Zurnamer | Michelle Basnett
  3. Ruan Potgieter | Leeverne Engelbrecht
  4. Jake Berman | Kelly Clark
  5. Tyler Christophel | Shelby Neal
  6. Mitchel Stevenson | Lindsey Porter

Below are a few key articles from our Sunday coverage. For a full list of stories from the entire weekend, go to MorningChalkUp.com. You can also check out all our YouTube videos from the weekend here.

 
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SPEED READS

In case you missed it: Lauren Kalil, who has been recapping all the semifinals, every day, also found some time to speak to coach Shane Orr on Brooke Wells and Spencer Panchik qualifying for the Games along with none other than his wife Tia-Clair Toomey, who we aren’t sure is even beatable.

Must watch: Jenn Ryan showing why the Age Group division at Semifinals still has its fair share of athletes who can go full on beast mode. Love the quote too. 💪

Congrats!: The one and only Josh Bridges is engaged! 😍

Onto the next: As the second week of semifinals has wrapped, we are onto the third and the Granite Games has released its schedule for Friday. So much CrossFit, amazing.

 
CROSSFIT GAMES
  Panchik Twins Qualify as Noah Ohlsen Surges Late to Snag CrossFit Games Spot 

Panchik Twins Qualify as Noah Ohlsen Surges Late to Snag CrossFit Games Spot

Week 2 of Semifinals has come to a close as more athletes have punched their tickets to the 2022 NOBULL CrossFit Games. Saxon Panchik conquered the Mid-Atlantic CrossFit Challenge after turning in a career-best performance in Knoxville, TN.

The details: Panchik was a force throughout the weekend as he only finished outside of the top five in one event. He turned in an 11th-place finish in Hardcore Parkour. The rest of the weekend featured him putting distance between himself and every other competitor.

  • Panchik won three events during the three-day event. He held off Dallin Pepper in Midline Sadness to close out the opening day before winning the MACC Mile to finish out the second day.
  • While Panchik’s final day of competition started with the stumble in Hardcore Parkour, he rebounded and put an exclamation point on his weekend. He beat Noah Ohlsen by nearly 13 seconds in Turbo Tunnel.

A family affair: The standout performance for Panchik ensured that he would return to the CrossFit Games, but it was not the only reason why the weekend was special for the family. His twin brother, Spencer Panchik, also took the final spot above the cutline with a third-place finish in Turbo Tunnel and secured his first CrossFit Games berth. Now he will compete against one of his brothers on the biggest stage.

“This was a dream we set out to accomplish over 10 years ago,” said older brother Scott Panchik, a perennial CrossFit Games competitor. “It’s a special day to see both Saxon and Spencer representing our family at the Crossfit Games. … So proud!”

A final comeback: One of the biggest points of conversation after the first two days of the MACC was Noah Ohlsen. He entered the weekend as one of two athletes – alongside Cole Sager – to compete at every CrossFit Games since the 2014 season, but he was below the cutline after two days of competition.

  • Ohlsen didn’t look like himself during the first two days of competition, but he did everything he needed to secure his ninth consecutive trip to the CrossFit Games.
  • The 31-year-old started the final day of competition by taking second overall in Hardcore Parkour. He then capped off the weekend with a second-place finish in Turbo Tunnel.

Ohlsen showcased his skills and experience during the final day. Now he will pursue a return to the CrossFit Games podium and potentially fight for the first championship of his career.

 
CROSSFIT GAMES
  Michelle Merand Wins “Battle of Michelles” in South Africa 

MEMBER EXCLUSIVE

Michelle Merand Wins “Battle of Michelles” in South Africa

Heading into the final day of competition at the Fittest in Cape Town Semifinals in Stellenbosch, South Africa, Michelle Merand and Michelle Basnett sat atop the leaderboard together, tied with 356 points.

But after a two-day back-and-forth battle, where they took turns beating each other on the first four events, Sunday was all about 32-year-old Merand, who bested the 25-year-old Basnett on both events and went on to earn the single CrossFit Games invite from Africa.

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PROFILE
  Michelle Merand Wins “Battle of Michelles” in South Africa 

Josh Bridges Recaps 2016 Murph, Emphasizes Importance for CrossFit Community

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CROSSFIT GAMES
  Rookie Rebecca Fuselier Joins Four Games Veterans, Punches Games Ticket in Dramatic Finish at the MACC 

Rookie Rebecca Fuselier Joins Four Games Veterans, Punches Games Ticket in Dramatic Finish at the MACC

With five CrossFit Games berths available at the Mid-Atlantic CrossFit Challenge, and only four female individual CrossFit Games competitors in the field, one thing was certain in Knoxville, TN on Sunday: A new CrossFit Games rookie would be born. The question was whether that rookie would be Rebecca Fuselier, Shelby Neal or Kelly Clark.

After six events, and a whole lot of leaderboard shuffling throughout the weekend, it was 22-year-old Fuselier who earned the ticket, and will join overall winner Danielle Brandon, 2021 Games rookies Sydney Michalyshen and Baylee Rayl, and seven-time Games veteran Brooke Wells in Madison, WI this summer.

The Dramatic Finish: Fuselier entered the final event just one point ahead of Neal and five points ahead of Clark, so it would essentially come down to the final event of muscle-ups, front squats, shoulder to overhead and front rack lunges.

  • Fuselier and Clark were neck-and-neck throughout pretty much the entire event, but it was Fueslier who finished her bar muscle-ups and shoulder-to-overheads first before beginning her final 45-foot overhead lunge to the finish line.
  • But one lunge before the finish line, Fuselier dropped her barbell, leaving enough time for Clark to pass her and cross the line first. Fuselier, though, gathered herself quickly and did exactly what she needed to do: make sure no one finished between her and Clark.
  • In the end, Fuselier snagged the final spot by one single point over Clark, while Neal, who came fifth in the final event, finished seventh overall.
  • When she crossed the line, Fuselier said she didn’t think she had done enough. “My arms gave out over that last line, and I thought that was it. But coach said before we went, ‘Fight to the finish.’ And that’s what we did,” she said.

More on Fuselier: Fuselier will head to Madison this summer as a rookie, but she competed twice at the Games as a teenager—in 2016 and 2017—placing 9th and 10th respectively.

  • After aging out of the teenage divisions, Fuselier gained valuable Semifinals experience at last year’s Mid-Atlantic CrossFit Challenge, where she placed 12th overall.

What Wells and Brandon said: After her win, Brandon, who finished the competition with three straight event wins, expressed how one of the keys to her success was her ability to stay emotionally calm and stick to her plan all weekend, something she hasn’t always been able to do.

  • “In the past I have been really reckless in not really planning and just telling coach, ‘I’m going to do (whatever)…whatever happens,’ and this year I think we really approached it so I could go into it more confident,” Brandon said, adding that she’s going to take a bit of a break now before getting “back to working even harder.”
  • As for Wells, though this is her eighth time qualifying to the Games, she couldn’t stop the tears from flowing at the end of the competition, saying this last year was “the hardest year I have ever had training in my life.”
  • She added: “I worked really hard to be ready to compete. It has only been nine months since I had reconstructive surgery, and nobody thought that was even in the cards to be here. And to start Saturday off with one of my first finishes ever…It has just been a battle this entire weekend and year, so to have it all pay off, it’s just so relieving. I can finally breathe. It’s just so worth it.”
 
CROSSFIT GAMES
  Rookie Rebecca Fuselier Joins Four Games Veterans, Punches Games Ticket in Dramatic Finish at the MACC 

VIDEO: CrossFit Mayhem Independence Qualifies Third Team to the Games

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HIGHLIGHTS

Celebrating a PR, hosting a fundraiser, this, that, or otherwise. Send us a highlight.

  • 🔥 68-year-old Leilani Hannie from Old Line CrossFit in Millersville, MD deadlifted 10 reps at 200 pounds/90.5kg.
  • Sasha Nievas tied the heaviest snatch lifted so far in the 2022 CrossFit Semifinals with 200 pounds/90.5kg— enough to give Mayhem Independence the win in event 1 at the Mid-Atlantic CrossFit Challenge.
  • Jaylond Franklin hit a 290 pound (131.5kg) snatch in Team Event 1 for CrossFit Shoofly Storm Squadron giving them 2nd place in the event, and an eventual 2nd place overall along with a ticket to Madison.
  • Congratulations Colin Oxendine from Lumberton, NC on the 275 pound/125kg clean PR.

Starting at 8:30am Sunday morning, CrossFit 11:24 in Marietta, GA did 11 workouts in 24 hours, culminating with Murph on Memorial Day Monday. The affiliate is raising money and awareness for member Doug Forester and family, whose son Brooks was born with NF1 which causes his body to develop benign tumors.

  • After his most recent spinal tumor, Brooks had a rough recovery and his mother, Megan, left her job to care for Brooks at home.
  • On top of this, Doug and Megan have discovered they are pregnant with their 4th child.
  • GoFundMe has been set up for the family’s medical expenses.
 
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12/3: Reindeer Rumble (Ocala, FL)
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1/15 - 1/31: Athens Throwdown Qualifiers (Athens, Greece)
1/21 - 1/22: Modena Challenge: Beginner and Master (Modena, Italy)

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