Some Yukon gymnasts made the podium at a Juneau meet last weekend.
How many? All of them.
A team of 11 from Whitehorse’s Polarettes Gymnastics Club all medalled in all-around categories at the Gold Rush Invitational, hosted by Juneau Gymnastics in Alaska on May 20.
“We’re pretty happy with the results,” said Polarettes head coach Kimberly Jones. “They haven’t had a lot of competition experience before, so it was a pretty good confidence boost for them.”
Polarettes gymnasts competed in eight divisions and won gold all-around in seven of them. In one of the Junior Olympic 3 groups, in which three Polarettes competed, they swept the podium.
“It was fun. The gym is nice and small, so it’s not too big, and we got to cheer on our team during the first part where the older girls were competing,” said Polarette Sascha Nelson.
“I did quite well, so I thought it was a really fun competition.”
Nelson won gold all-around in a Junior Olympic 3 division. The 11-year-old was at her first competition out of Yukon, just like teammates Adria Gallina and Talia Campbell, who also won gold all-around in their divisions.
Not all the highlights for Nelson were from the competition.
“When we were in Skagway on the ferry, we were all doing gymnastics stuff on the deck and it was pretty fun because when the boat started to move we were doing handstands and we’d literally get blown over,” said Nelson.
This wasn’t the first time the Polarettes have produced strong results at the Juneau competition. At last year’s event Polarettes won gold all-around in all five of the divisions they were entered in.
“There were some big moments for the girls, for sure,” said Jones. “Kate Koepke competed her round of handspring-back handspring for the first time, which has been a struggle in the gym for her to learn.
“Sasha Kozmen competed a brand new floor routine and the judges actually came up to me after the competition and complimented how well she did in her performance. She was second on floor, but they said, ‘Wow, that kid can really dance.’”
Contact Tom Patrick at firstname.lastname@example.org
All-around podium finishes
Junior Olympic 2
1st Adria Gallina (Yukon) — 34.5
Junior Olympic 3 (group A)
1st Olivia Vangel (Yukon) — 32.9
2nd Ava Severance (Juneau) — 31.5
3rd Jadyn Cook (Juneau) — 28.8
Junior Olympic 3 (group B)
1st Talia Campbell (Yukon) — 35.5
2nd Maya-Pearl Hudson (Yukon) — 35.15
3rd Amelie Guilbeaut (Yukon) — 35.05
Junior Olympic 3 (group C)
1st Mackenzie Tonner (Yukon) — 35.0
2nd Camille Belanger (Yukon) — 34.5
3rd Kara Strong (Juneau) — 32.55
Junior Olympic 3 (group D)
1st Sascha Nelson (Yukon) — 31.9
2nd Kristie Kulbeth (Juneau) — 30.4
Junior Olympic 4 (group A)
1st Helene Platt (Juneau) — 29.2
2nd Mariah Schauwecker (Juneau) — 27.2
3rd Reese Ayd (Juneau) — 27.15
Junior Olympic 4 (group B)
1st Kate Koepke (Yukon) — 34.6
2nd Ava Gauthier (Juneau) — 28.7
3rd Eva Miller (Juneau) — 27.5
Junior Olympic 5
1st Stella Moran (Juneau) — 27.5
2nd Kaelin Tibbles (Juneau) — 26.9
Junior Olympic 6
1st Kalina Morrison (Yukon) — 34.65
Junior Olympic 7 (group A)
1st Sydney Strong (Juneau) — 35.45
2nd Sasha Kozmen (Yukon) — 34.0
3rd Abigail Booton (Juneau) — 29.0
Junior Olympic 7 (group B)
1st Megan Lujan (Juneau) — 34.05
2nd Cadence Campbell (Juneau) — 32.875
3rd Kaidence Bernaldo (Juneau) — 32.55