East gymnasts suffer narrow defeat

With freshman Abby Lewis out due to injury, the Columbus East Olympians were left to compete with only three varsity gymnasts against Owen Valley on Wednesday night.

Competing against six girls from Owen Valley, the fifth-ranked Olympians battled throughout the night but were unable to overcome the vacancy, falling to the 10th-ranked Patriots, 109.6 to 109.25.

“Our three girls came out here and matched and competed with Owen Valley all night,” East coach Nancy Kirshman said. “For them to come out here and score 109.25, without a girl who scores 9.0s of her own, is a big deal.”

Sophomore Andrea Stattenfield had a strong performance in Lewis’ place, placing fourth in the balance beam with a 9.1, and scoring a 9.0 in the floor exercise.

“Andrea showed tonight she is capable of stepping into big roles for this team,” Kirshman said. “Throughout the year she has stepped in for injured girls and helped this team when they needed her the most.”

Sophomore Adi Minor led the charge for the Olympians, placing second in the all-around competition with a score of 38.4. Minor, just one meet removed from nearly breaking the Columbus East all-around record, came even closer Wednesday night.

Heading into the final event, the floor exercise, Minor needed a 9.5 to tie the school record of 38.45, but she stumbled on her final tumble pass and settled for a 9.45 in the event.

“She just keeps on knocking on the door of that record,” Kirshman said. “Even with her miscues, the judges said she has one of the best floor routines in the state. She was neck and neck with (Owen Valley’s Anna) Watkin all night and matched her just fine.”

Watkin is the reigning state champion in the all-around. Her overall score of 38.6 placed first on the night, and she also won the uneven bars (9.5) and floor exercise (9.65) and tied for first with Minor in the balance beam (9.7).

Coming off a personal best all-around meet last week, junior Seena Greiwe placed fourth in the all-around, scoring a 36.05. She placed third in the floor exercise (9.35) and fourth in the vault (8.7).

“This was a good meet for us; I’m not concerned at all moving forward,” Kirshman said. “It gives us an idea of where Owen Valley is, as well as ourselves, and we know that we are capable of beating them when it really counts in the tournament.”