Kaleidoscope taking gymnastics team to states
The Kaleidoscope gymnastics team is on fire, with everyone making the qualifying meet for the state championship, and many of the girls already qualified for states.
The Kaleidoscope team boasts a roster of hardworking and competitive level 5 and 6 gymnasts. Gymnasts rank in levels 1 through 10, based on skill, after which a gymnast may qualify for "Elite" status. Elite gymnasts are the ones you see doing death-defying feats on television when the Olympics roll around every four years.
Female gymnasts can begin participating in USA Gymnastics sanctioned events at level 4.
To qualify for states, a girl needs to get a 32.0 in the all-around competition. This would be the equivalent of getting an 8.0 (out of a possible score of 10) on each event.
Level 5 gymnasts Mia Hemphill and Kate Erickson, both of Marion, qualified for states on their first tries last weekend.
Eight-year-old Mia placed second on the floor exercise and fourth in the all-around competition.
“I wasn’t so nervous because I knew I could do it,” she said of qualifying for states. She said she doesn’t really get nervous, she just does the same thing she does in practice.
Ten-year-old Kate Erickson will be heading to states, and hopes to get a 9.0 on at least one event. “I’ve had a 9.0 at every competition except sectionals,” she said.
Out of the level 6 girls, three have qualified for states so far. Fifteen-year-old Hannah Abrantis says that, as a level 5 gymnast last year, she placed first on the floor exercise at states. She’s hoping to medal as a level 6 as well.
“I’m hoping to place on at least one event,” said Hannah. "It’s hard because there are a lot of girls there.”
Alyson Stellato, a level 6 gymnast from Mattapoisett, also qualified for the state competition.
Eleven-year-old Laurenne Wilkinson of Marion qualified for sectionals, the qualifying meet for states, and has another chance at making it to states as a level 6.
“I’m kind of nervous because it’s my last chance,” she said. She competed at states last year as a level 5, and placed fifth on floor.
Maxine Kellum, 13, placed fifth in the all-around as a level 5 at states last year. This year, she says, she expects the competition to be tougher but she’s still confident.
“Level 6 girls tend to be older," she said. "It’s harder this year.”