Local gymnasts fare well at provincials

Eleven members of the Bluewater Gymnastics Club who competed at the Ontario Championships in Windsor. From left are, back: Shea Skinn-Wai, Amy Bladon, Serena Baker, Lexi McCormack and Jaelyn Cole; front: Madison Gabel, Rachal Riley, Jovie Richardson, Lyla D’andrea, Jordyn Somers and Hayley Tarboton Barry Wright

Barry Wright

Athletes from Sarnia’s Bluewater Gymnastics Club had another successful run at the recent Ontario Championships at the University of Windsor.

Eleven club competitors took part, with many winning medals or posting personal best scores.

Serena Baker, 17, qualified for the Canadian Championships in Gatineau, Que. in late May, while 10-year-old Hayley Tarboton and nine-year-old Jovie Richardson qualified for the Eastern Canadian Championships in Moncton, N.B. from May 7-11.

Tarboton captured a bronze medal in the bars event at provincials and will compete in the Pre-Novice Aspire division, while Richardson will compete in the Pre-Novice Elite category.  She won silver medals in both the bars and vault at the provincials.

Meanwhile, Rachal Riley won the provincial vault event and captured bronze medals in both the bars and floor event in the Pre-Novice Elite category.

Lexi McCormack took home the bronze medal on the bars in the level nine category.

Several other girls finish in or near the top ten in their respective events.

“We’re pretty happy with how they made out,” said Bluewater coach Liz Brubaker.  “There were a couple of surprises.  We weren’t maybe expecting the younger girls to qualify for the Eastern Canadian Championships,” she added.

Brubaker says during this season, which was considered a rebuilding year, the goal was for the girls to go to the provincial championships and simply do the best that they could.

She also sees Baker’s participation at the upcoming nationals as an opportunity for her to showcase her talents.

“We’re looking at getting her a scholarship,” said Brubaker.  “It’s great that she has qualified for the nationals because all the (U.S. college) scouts will be there.”