The Whistler Secondary Storm Girls Gymnastics Team turned heads last weekend at the B.C. Secondary School Championships, March 6 to 8, at Seycove Secondary in Deep Cove, Vancouver.
Two athletes finished in the medals, seven won awards, and the team finished eighth out of 41 schools.
We were the newcomers competing in our first B.C. Championships against many well-established schools and teams, so we went in not knowing what to expect.
We felt a little daunted to find over 250 male and female gymnasts competing in the four levels of competition. We also noted during the march-in that we at least looked good our new suits were the best of the floor. So in typical Whistler form, looking good led to feeling good, which led to doing well.
The 11 girls we brought competed over the next three days in their respective divisions.
On Thursday, our only competitor in Level 1, Alexa Treleaven, enjoyed her first gymnastics competition and did well in a field of over 50 competitors.
On Friday morning, the Level 3 team of Teagan Turcotte, Michaela DArtois and Holly Hetherington took to the floor.
Holly led the way with a gold medal on the balance beam, and Michaela placed fifth on the uneven bars.
That afternoon, the Level 4 team of Rachel Kleinman, Melissa Manuel, Nicola Bennett and Natasha Quinn made their presence, and experience felt. Nicola won a gold medal on vault, which she followed up with a silver medal on the bars. We have always appreciated Nicola as a role model, so it is wonderful to see her triumph at this event in her graduating year.
Manuela finished seventh on the vault out of 32 competitors.
Friday evening was the banquet and dance, and we were a little worried that our celebrating might drain the energy from our Level 2 team, who faced 50 competitors on Saturday morning. Not so.
Elanor Messeguer, Jordon Kolbeka and Sara Fenwick were up to the challenge. Sara performed a strong vault to finish fifth, and Eleanor was fifth on the floor.
The team would like to thank teacher sponsor Anne Poole, team supporter Zoe Brown, drivers and chaperones Ron Kolbeka, Kelly McArther, Bonnie Turcotte, Tara DArtois and coaches Kerry Marther and Veronique Hamel.