Gymnastics team gives a spirited performance at Mt. Vernon meet despite not having all members present

ome of the the gymnastics team members pictured here competed at Mount Vernon HS on Jan. 9. Photo courtesy of

Grace Mak, Staff writer

Cheers of support could be heard from the sidelines where the gymnastics team stood as a member prepared to begin her routine. This was a common scene throughout the gymnastics meet held on Mon., Jan. 9 at Mount Vernon HS.

For this meet, not all of the gymnastics team members were able to participate due to other commitments. As a result, the gymnasts had to compete with the remaining teammates.

“Overall, the meet was not as good as we could’ve done. When we have a full team, it’s easier for people to score better and it kind of boosts the morale of the team,” junior Sophie Koh said.

Despite this, the team still enjoyed being able to compete and watch gymnasts from other schools.

“While we didn’t win, I had a lot of fun because you also saw how hard the other girls worked from the other teams, and you saw your teammates perform,” freshman Alexis Echano said.

Echano, drawing from past experiences, has applied what she learned as a gymnast to her everyday life.

“I learned a lot of lessons from gymnastics, like you have to keep going, and you can’t give up, even when you fall, to get back up,” Echano said. “It’s helped me with school and also time management because practices are very long.”

With the current renovation on the school building, the gymnastics team has been practicing in the wrestling room, where there is only a limited number of equipment.

“To prepare specifically for a meet, we just kind of practice all of our routines. Because we haven’t really been in Gym 2 yet, it’s kind of hard to practice all of the events when you only have access to one event that is in the wrestling room, and it gets very difficult to do,” Koh said.

Because of this, the team hopes to be able to practice for all events in preparation for future meets once they gain access to Gym 2.

“I think once we’re able to go into Gym 2, we’ll be able to practice all of the events at practice and have experience doing things like bar and beam without having to travel all the way to Woodbridge, which is where we go on Saturdays, just to get access to equipment,” Koh said.

Last year, the team came close to making it to the regional gymnastics meet, so one of their goals for this year is to be able to make the cut and compete in regionals.

“I think the main goal for this year would be to make conference, so conference is a meet where the top two teams in our district go to the conference meet, and… last year, we were in 3rd place.” Koh said. “This year, we got a couple of new freshmen that actually did gymnastics, so our scores at meets have been a lot higher, so I think that we actually have a chance of making it to conference this year.”

The team also encourages girls who are interested in gymnastics to join the sport next year, even if they may have not previously participated in it.

“Gymnastics is a great sport that really tests your mental, physical, emotional ability and it makes you a lot stronger, and you don’t need any experience,” Echano said. “Everyone on the team is so helpful, encouraging, and it’s overall just a fun sport to do.”