Gymnasts Earn State Titles
The Gymniks Gymnastics team competed in the 2011 WV State Gymnastics Championships, held at the Elite Sports Center in Parkersburg March 26-27.
More than 300 West Virginia gymnasts, representing 16 gymnastics teams, competed for state titles in levels 3-10. Place winners in levels 8-10 advanced to the regional meet in Maryland, with hopes of continuing on to the national championships in Long Beach, Ca.
The meet was sanctioned by USA Gymnastics, the governing body for the sport of gymnastics in the United States. Gymnasts competed by level and age division in four events: vault, uneven bars, balance beam and floor exercise.
The state meet was the final meet of the competition season which took them to Virginia Beach, Toledo and Cincinnati, among other places. Of the some 15 gymnastic gyms in West Virginia, Gymniks is the emerging leader. Despite having only 65 competing gymnasts, Gymniks brought home big scores from meets in surrounding states that have teams with hundreds of gymnasts.
One local team from Fairmont has three gymnasts with a famous mother, Mary Lou Retton. She is present at many of the regular season meets and the girls enjoy being in the company of an Olympian and pioneer of the sport.
The sport requires strict discipline and training hours range from 8-30 hours per week year-around.
In addition to state championships, the girls also won event titles. Camryn Irvin was state champion on vault, uneven bars and floor exercise. Bethany Dawson took the championship on uneven bars.
Kayna and Alavia Anderson are the daughters of Danny and Anissa Anderson of New Martinsville and granddaughters of Don and Sheila Anderson of Short Gap, WV; and of Vince and Kay Monseau of New Martinsville. Irvin is the daughter of Brent and Heather Irvin of Parkersburg and granddaughter of Sam and Sharon Irvin of Jacksonburg and of Bud and Diane Mason of Reader. Dawson is the daughter of Patrick and Crystal Dawson of Parkersburg, She is the granddaughter of Ron and Carol Dawson of New Martinsville and Sonny and Charlotte Smith of New Martinsville.