WAYNESBORO – The Waynesboro High School gymnastics team dropped its home opener to a talented Altoona team 141.15-129.55.
Altoona standout Gracie Weaver took home wins on three events and in the all-around. Altoona also took the next three all around places.
“Altoona is one of the strongest teams in the state,” said Waynesboro coach Amy Dennis. “We had to chase them all evening and unfortunately we weren’t on our A game.”
Vault was a bright spot for Waynesboro. It was the only event that Waynesboro scored higher than Altoona. Waynesboro junior Jenna Geesaman tied Weaver for the vault win with a 9.6.
Geesaman was followed by teammates Jada Creager (9.4) and Camryn Bonner (9.3) in second and third.
“Vault is definitely our best event,” said Dennis. “We have some great vaulters and have a deep lineup on that event. I expect to get a dozen or so gymnasts qualified for states on that event.”
After a strong vault event, Waynesboro struggled on bars turning in the lowest team bars score in years.
“We only managed to get a 26.65 on bars,” Dennis said. “We didn’t have a single score in the eights. We should have at least four. We struggle on bars, even though we have big skills. We aren’t consistent and that’s going to factor in big on the state level.”
Geesaman also led the way for Waynesboro on beam with a 9.2. Geesaman was second and Creager was fourth.
“Jenna had a solid routine,” said Dennis. “You could see her relax and begin to enjoy the routine after she stuck her back handspring, back layout series. Jada had an outstanding series as well. She does a back handspring, back handspring and I don’t think I’ve ever seen one done better.”
Junior Bella Bonner was the top Waynesboro finisher on floor. Bonner scored an 8.55.
“Doing big tumbling skills on a wrestling mat rather than a spring floor is often daunting,” Dennis said. “Bella handled that very well tonight. She’s a strong tumbler as well as a beautiful dancer and performed a routine where she really was able to show off both.”
A big positive from the meet for Waynesboro was the number of bronze and novice gymnasts who are beginning to hit qualifying scores for states.
“We had a great deal of success tonight from a number of girls who are on the cusp of qualifying for states,” said Dennis. “A number need just one or two more scores to get qualified individually for the first time. Kiera Mouer, Kyersten Zeigler, Addisyn Lehman and Lily McFarland have put themselves in a strong position to qualify and we have one or two others who are getting quite close.”
Waynesboro’s next meet will be at home on Wednesday evening, Feb. 2 at 6:30. Gymnasts from a number of high schools who all compete at the Garver Memorial YMCA in Roaring Spring will travel to town.