ATLANTIC GYMNASTS CONQUER CAMBRIDGE
Junior Olympic Athletes Compete in Starlight Invitational
CAMBRIDGE, MA- March 2016: The Junior Olympic (JO) Gymnasts from Atlantic Gymnastics Training Center (AGTC) recently competed at the Starlight Invitational Meet hosted by the MGC Masstars Gym and held at Massachusetts Institute of Technology Rockwell Gym in Cambridge MA. More than 640 of the region’s top gymnastics talent participated in the USAG sanctioned event.
Level 6 Takes Silver
The Level 6 team of eleven gymnasts ages 10-14 secured a second place silver win with a score of 110.13. In Division 1, North Hampton’s Madeline Brandt placed 7th on bars and 9th on floor with an upbeat, crowd pleasing floor routine. Newmarket’s Amy Benson performed well with an impressive beam routine and a powerful and precise vault. In Division 2, Gabriella Verno of Lee, placed 9th in the all-around which resulted from solid routines on uneven bars, beam and floor exercise and a 6th place finish on vault.
The Division 3 gymnasts performances did not disappoint. Newmarket’s Kaia Meredith had an outstanding meet, she earned 3rd place in the all-around scoring complemented by 1st place on balance beam, 2nd place on vault and 6th place on uneven bars. Mia Cheney of Portsmouth, achieved 5th place all-around in the division with a 3rd place finish on bars and an 8th place completion on vault. Portsmouth teammate Lucy Ferini gave a solid uneven bars routine and a graceful and precise beam performance. Meanwhile, Grace Jenkins scored a personal best on vault of 9.475, placing her 3rd as well as a 9.1 on balance beam securing her 4th position on the apparatus.
The success continued with the Division 4 competitors. Rye’s Grace Schwaegerle achieved a personal best this season taking 3rd in the all-around. She earned 2nd place on bars, 3rd place on floor and 7th place on beam. Not far behind was Madison Zadravec who captured 5th place in the all-around with a second-place beam routine, third-place vault, fifth-place bar and ninth-place floor routine. Wrapping up the division was Gillian Croteau who captured 8th place in the all-around with a second -place vault and a sixth-place bars routine. Meanwhile Maine teammate Fran Toracinta performed a strong floor exercise routine, which earned 7th place and executed a powerful 8th place vault.
AGTC had four Level 7 Competitors, Katherine Carter, Sarah Craft, both of Dover, Audrey Stuart of Union, and Hannah Braddish of Wells, Maine. Carter had an amazing meet, taking silver in the all around in Division 2 with a combined high score of 36.00 supported by 2nd place finish on balance beam, 4th place on uneven bars, and 3rd place on floor exercise. Meanwhile Division 3 teammate, Stuart was under the weather but was still able to perform a beautiful balance beam routine.
Division 4 brought competitors Braddish and Craft. Braddish, participating in her first meet of the season, competed on only two events, uneven bars which she produced a 8.80 and 8th place finish and balance beam, which earned an 8.40 and another 8th place finish. Craft earned 8th place in the Division 4 all around scoring supported by a graceful 2nd place balance beam routine and 9th place on floor and uneven bars.
JO Level 8 team consisted of Brooke McErlain, Anya Cunningham, Malia Cryan, Gabrielle Pitt, and Dominique Chasse. In Division 1 and hailing from Raymond, Cunningham, was strong and executed solid performances across all events taking 8th place in the all around with a 5th place vault (9.05) 7th place uneven bars (9.375) and an 8th place finish on floor exercise (9.05). McErlain of Hampton, took the top spot in Division 2 with a combined first place score of 36.60. She executed a 9.00/3rd place vault, an amazing and fluid uneven bars routine that amassed a high 9.675 score and 1stplace, followed by 7th place on balance beam and 11th place on floor exercise.
In Division 3, York’s Malia Cryan earned a silver all around finish with a combined score of 35.50 and second place. She competed a Tsukahara Vault (Tsuk) for the very first time and walked away with a first place nod; floor exercise was strong with a 4th place award and 3rd place on uneven bars. Meanwhile, teammate Chasse, of Lebanon Maine, wasn’t far behind securing a 4thplace all around finish in the division with a first place uneven bars performance, 7th place balance beam score, and 5th place floor routine. Stratham’s Pitt was unable to vault, but made up ground with a stellar floor exercise presentation that garnered gold. She also placed on uneven bars (4th) and balance beam (6th).
Level 9 Takes Third Place
The Level 9 team had 4 gymnasts: Sydney Caro, Ayla McKean, Sarah Morin, and Jillian York. All competitors were assigned to Division 1 age group. McKean had another spectacular meet earning 4th in the all around with a total score of 35.675. All around scoring was supported by 6th on floor exercise, 5th on vault, 4th on balance beam, and gold on uneven bars. Meanwhile, Dover’s Caro was right behind McKean taking 5th in the all around. She executed a powerful 2nd place vault, was graceful on balance beam earning 6th place and was strong on floor earning 5th place on the event.
From Portsmouth, Morin competed in her first meet since January and secured 6th place on uneven bars. York was able to snag 6th place on vault and she successfully completed her new uneven bars release move, the Pak Salto. The uneven bar transition is named for former gymnast Gyong Sil Pak of North Korea.
Level 10 had two competitors, high school seniors, Annie Christman, of Amherst, NH and Kirsten Sweetman of Londonderry. Christman performed an exquisite uneven bars routine which produced a first place win. She also earned 5th on floor exercise and 4th on vault and beam; combined scoring awarded her 2nd in the all around. Sweetman, competing Level 10 for the first time this season, executed a solid 8.90 vault and was successful delivering the difficult Jaegar release move on uneven bars. Named after Bernd Jaeger, who debuted it at the 1974 World Championships. In a Jaeger, a gymnast swings up and let’s goes of the bar. She then does a front flip and catches the bar again.
AGTC teams are coached by Matt Yellis, Cori Cunningham, and Allison Brisson. The JO athletes head back to practice to prepare for the state championships held later this month.