GRAND RAPIDS — The Grand Rapids Gymnastics Academy (GRGA) competed at the Tropical Twist Invitational held in St. Cloud on Saturday, Feb. 8.
GRGA’s Level 3-8 Junior Olympic teams put together a strong performance over the weekend, coming home with first-place team finishes in Level 3, Level 7 and Level 8. The Level 4 team finished in second place while the Level 5 team finished in third place.
GRGA’s Level 8 team took the top four all-around spots in the meet with Selah Villenueve taking first – 36.4, Kat Trest second – 35.05, Makenzie Mustar third – 34.625 and Allie Haarklau fourth – 34.575. GRGA gymnasts also notched the top individual spot on all four events. Villenueve won the bars with a 9.625, Trest took top honors on both beam and floor with 9.2 and 9.25 while Mustar won the vault with a 9.15.
Other performances that landed in the top-three on the podium were Allie Haarklau – second place bars – 8.775 and third place beam – 9.025, Makenzie Mustar – second place beam 9.05, Kat Trest – third place bars –
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8.65 and Selah Villenueve – 2nd place vault – 9.1.
The Level 7 team took the top three overall spots in the all-around with Emma Morris placing first, Jaden Hebeisen second and Mackenzie Hebeisen third. Morris won the bars with an 8.9, Jaden Hebeisen won the beam with a 9.275 and Mackenzie Hebeisen won the floor with a 9.575. Morris also led the team on vault finishing second with a 9.2 and placed third on both beam and floor with scores of 9.05 and 9.2. Jaden Hebeisen also had a second place finish on bars with an 8.825 while Mackenzie Hebeisen had a second place finish on beam with a 9.225.
GRGA’s Level 5 gymnasts, Kennedy Garner and Evie Renskers, both posted their highest all-around scores of the season which placed Renskers third and Garner fourth overall. Renskers also finished second on vault with a 9.225 and third on bars with an 8.775. Garner finished second on floor with an 8.875.
Level 4 gymnast, Claire Fannin, put together a dominant performance by winning the all-around with a new GRGA Level 4 record of 36.2. She won the vault with a 9.05, beam with a 9.1 and floor with a score of 9.325, which set a new GRGA record. Fannin also posted an 8.725 on bars to finish second.
Hattie Eskeli and Kali Benes also notched several top-three finishes in their respective age groups. Eskeli, competing in the age 10 and up group, was third in the all-around with a 34.75, third on beam with an 8.825 and second on floor with an 8.875. Benes, age 8, was third in the all-around with a 34.3, third on bars with an 8.9, third on beam with an 8.45 and second on floor with an 8.8.
The Level 3 team broke the all-time GRGA Level 3 scoring record by hitting a 109.925 – just .025 better than the previous record of 109.9. GRGA’s seven Level 3 athletes also scored the top seven all-around scores in the competition. Team members contributing to the record-breaking performance were Alexis Hutchinson, Maddy Herschbach, Mattea Villenueve, Izzy Nelson, Tory Calaguire, Kylee Villebrun and Jasmine Finken.
Alexis Hutchinson led the way for the team with an all-around score of 36.625. Hutchinson was dominant in the 10 and up age group, placing first on all four individual events in addition to the all-around. Hutchinson had scores of 9.125 on vault, 9.05 on bars, 9.225 on beam and 9.225 on floor. Izzy Nelson finished second all-around in the 10 and up age group with a 35.7 and also placed third on bars – 8.9, second on beam – 8.85 and second on floor – 9.0. Kylee Villebrun was third in the all-around with a 35.35. She was also second on vault with a 9.1, second on bars with a 9.0 and third on beam with an 8.85.
In the 9 and under age group, Madelyn Herschbach took the top all-around spot with a score of 36.2. She was also first on beam with an 8.875 and second on bars with a 9.15. Teammate Tory Calaguire broke the Level 3 bar record for GRGA by hitting a 9.475 to place first. She also posted a 9.475 on vault which was good for first, 9.0 on floor to place second and 35.65 to place third all-around. Mattea Villenueve finished second in the all-around with a score of 35.95, third on bars with a 9.0 and third on floor with an 8.975.
GRGA’s Level 7 and 8 teams will travel to the Minneapolis Convention Center this week for the Twisted Moose Invitational.