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Living life on the High Beam

Gymnastics team hopes for successful season

Junior Mackenzie Megellas  on the high beam

Junior Mackenzie Megellas on the high beam

By: Donna Dezendorf

By: Donna Dezendorf

Junior Mackenzie Megellas on the high beam

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The entire team had been waiting for the results, praying that they would be able to pull ahead.

The room was filled with an excited buzz as the gymnasts sat, occasionally looking to a supportive parent who would offer an encouraging smile and a thumbs up, waiting to see if their hard work paid off.

The loudspeaker crackled coming to life, and the announcer’s booming voice echoed through the room.

“ And first place overall for the meet goes to… Grapevine High School!”


With the school’s gymnastics team having high hopes to make it to state this year, they will compete on Thursday at Chisholm Trail High School.


“Gymnastics has taught me patience most of all,” junior Mackenzie Megellas said. “I can’t just throw a skill I haven’t learned properly. I must practice and train until I’ve perfected the skill and I’m ready to compete.”


Team members use their skills gained during practice to perform well at competition. Placing high at meets will help them meet their goals.


“I am hoping that we will make it to state again this year,” junior Emily Stoller said. “I expect improved scores from last year to represent the hard work we have been putting into our practices.”


Despite not being well known on campus, gymnastics is just as important assistant coach, Sharon O’Brien said.


“I wish that more people would come out to a gymnastics meet and see how talented these kids are,” She said. “Gymnastics takes a great deal of strength, endurance, flexibility and rhythm.”


Gymnastics has a set of rules and a specific season in which they perform and are help to high school standards throughout the season.


“Female gymnasts compete up to 4 events, male gymnasts compete up to 6 events,” Head Coach Christine Whitten said. “The goal is to score a perfect 10 on each event. Deductions are taken for mistakes made in the routine and errors made while executing skills.”


Something unusual about the team this year is they only have one boy instead of two or three. However the team is just as skilled as they were before Stoller said.


“Having only one guy did not affect the team because we compete separately,” Stoller said. “However, it provided some extra support for our team.”


Despite both schools having their own separate teams, the CHHS and Grapevine gymnastics teams still practice together at the Topflight gymnastics gym.


“I like practicing with the CHHS team because it allows us to meet more people,” Stoller said. “We are able to look past the rivalry seen in other sports to develop great friendships with them.”


Most of the athletes on the team developed a love for the sport a long time ago when they were young, Megellas said.


“I first decided to join the school gymnastics team when I was in elementary school and I started gymnastics,” She said. “It has (also) always been a dream of mine to be on a high school gymnastics team.”


Despite the many challenges the team has faced, they are strong and can accomplish any task they set their mind to, Whitten said.


“The Grapevine High School gymnasts are very dedicated, they work hard and they continually push and encourage each other,” Whitten said. “The team trains for hours on end —rarely stopping for a break. Their commitment, dedication and determination are second to none.”



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Living life on the High Beam