Following last week’s city gymnastics meet, Columbus North co-coach Sandy Freshour was talking with a couple of former Bull Dogs when the subject of current senior Katrina May came up.
As Freshour pointed out to Chelsea Wieland and Megan Heathcote, they must have set good examples as leaders, considering the way May has been leading this year’s North team.
“She brings some leadership qualities,” North co-coach Bob Arthur said. “She keeps her teammates a little more relaxed. She doesn’t seem to have any jealousy when she gets beat. She’s just as happy for her teammates as she is for herself when she does well.”
May, a two-time regional all-around champion, finished ninth at state in the all-around as a sophomore and 13th last year. She won the bars and finished third behind teammates Ashley Holliday and Clarie Thompson in the all-around with a 35.775 in the Bull Dogs’ season-opening win at Bloomington North.
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In last week’s win at Columbus East, May improved to a 37.2 in the all-around to take third behind Thompson and the Olympians’ Adi Minor.
“Neither meet has been perfect, so that always gives me a little more confidence, that I know I can do better,” May said. “I have put in new skills, and we’ve cleaned up a lot throughout the summer.”
Freshour is confident May’s scores will continue to rise.
“Sometimes when you get into competition, it’s just a few seconds after a lot of hours of work that is out for show, and the number of hours Katrina is putting in to lead the team is above and beyond,” Freshour said. “Her moment in the spotlight will come because it’s all there in the practice.”
More important to May has been the team’s success. North posted the state’s top score, a 111.95, in the win at East and is tied atop the state rankings with two-time defending state champion Valparaiso.
“We’re all getting along really well, and this team score is by far the highest we’ve ever had early in the season,” May said. “We’re definitely in better shape this year than we were last year, so that gives us a lot of good thoughts about what can happen in the future.”
While May, Holliday and Thompson have been leading the Bull Dogs, this year’s team features another sophomore and four freshmen. May and the other senior and co-captain, Chloe Jorgensen, have been helping the underclassmen.
“Chloe and I have taken a big step up to take care of everyone,” May said. “Not many people are experienced with the whole competing in gymnastics thing, so we’ve had to guide everyone through it. We’re all very close, so supporting each other in all the events is great.”
May broke the school pole vault record last season and finished sixth in that event at last year’s state track meet. She plans to pole vault in college.
A 4.01 student, May has a scholarship offer from Northeastern and has talked to coaches from Harvard, Cornell, MIT and Rose-Hulman. She wants to study mechanical engineering.
In her final gymnastics season, May is hoping to help North break the school record of 114.2 and bring home a state championship.
“I think it would be awesome if we could break the school record,” May said. “I know that this year, if we hit 4 for 4 on every single event, that we can do it.”
A look at Katrina May’s gymnastics and pole vaulting finishes in her high school career:
2013;fourth in regional, 13th at state
2014;regional champ, tied for ninth at state
2015;regional champ, 13th at state
Track and field (pole vault)
2013;finished fifth at regional
2014;regional champ, tied for 16th at state
2015;regional champ, sixth at state