Club Gymnastics Steps It Up A Level

Sacred Heart University (SHU) club gymnastics team showcased their prowess on the national stage during the recent competition held from April 12- 14 in Albuquerque, N. M.

Over 300 teams from across the nation were invited to compete at this year’s event. SHU gymnastics registered their team as level eight, a division that consisted of 19 total teams, and featured some of the best routines in the entire competition.

“By registering our team at a higher level, it motivated all of us to develop new skills and get creative with meeting the requirements for this level,” said senior captain Mollie McManus.

While they started off strong in their preliminary competition, SHU’s gymnastics team did not meet the requirements to compete in the finals on Saturday.

Despite falling short of their ultimate goal, the team was still able to enjoy their experiences from their time at nationals.

“I had a lot of fun traveling with my teammates and coach. It was so cool to be able to compete against gymnasts from all over the country,” said freshman Sophia Rauseo.

Sophomore Mackenzie Adair recalled what made this season so special for herself and the team.

“The highlight of our season was just having such a large, well-bonded team and getting to compete together multiple times,” said Adair. “We have built a sense of camaraderie and support.”

This year’s team featured a mix of girls who have been competing in gymnastics their whole lives, and some girls who were relatively new to the sport.

“Our highlight has been growing our team year after year,” said McManus. “We always try to foster an environment where we allow girls from levels to join and make them feel welcomed.”

Although the team was faced with adversity and had to deal with injuries throughout the season, they didn’t let that get in the way of competing at the highest level.

“We had some bumps in the road along the way,” said Adair. “Dealing with injuries throughout the season and even right before nationals made setting lineups and competing a little difficult at times, but we found a way to make it work.”

McManus credits the attitude of Amanda Sclafani, the team’s Head Coach, for their ability to stay resilient even when things weren’t going their way.

“Coach Sclafani has worked hard to build up our strength and help rehab existing injuries through strength and conditioning,” said McManus. “Although we have faced minor injuries and have dealt with the existing injuries, we have still persevered and put our best product on the mat every time we competed.”

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