Gymnast-A-Cats have strong run in Macon

Published 6:37 am Friday, April 23, 2010

Coach Melynda Murkerson’s Bainbridge Gymnast-A-Cats made a strong run at the Georgia State Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) Georgia State Chamionships Meet Saturday and Sunday, April 17 and 18 in Macon.

They were led by highest all around scorer McKenzie Findley who had what Coach Merkerson termed an amazing score of 38.75.

In individual apparatus competition, the team won 93 medals, 13 gold, 12 silver, 11 bronze, and 57 4th though 10th place.

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Anna Lee Lockart, Emily Chambers and McKenzie Findley were first place gold medalists in all-around competition.

Second place all-around champions were Caroline Middleton, and Karlie Bridges and third place all around champions were Megan Haire and Sarah Kaylee Wynn.

Individual apparatus competition featured Anna Lee Lockart and Allie Deal winning first place gold medals in the vault, Sara Kaylee Wynn, Breanna Dean, Megan Haire and Lanie Birdsong winning second place silver medals in the vault, and Abagail Wilson,Caroline Middleton and Lucy Sloan winning third place bronze medals in the vault.

The uneven bars competition featured McKenzie Findley, Emily Chambers, Breanna Dean and Caroline Middleton winning first place gold medals, Megan Haire and Anna Lee Lockart winning second place silver medals and Abigail Wilson and Gabby Hardee winning third place bronze medals.

First place gold medalists on the balance beam were Emily Chambers and McKenzie Findley. Winning second place silver medals on the balance beam were Sarah Kaylee Wynn, and Anna Lee Lockart.

Balance beam third place bronze medalists were Abigail Wilson and Caroline Middleton.

Capturing first pace gold medals in the floor exercise were Caroline Middleton and Emily Chambers. Taking second place silver medals in the floor exercise were Megan Haire, McKenzie Findley and Anna Lee Lockart.

Capturing third place bronze medals in the floor exercise were Karlie Bridges and Lanie Birdsong.

Also competing and helping the Gymnast-A-Cats stand out were McKenna Stegall, Sydney Thompson, Caroline Wells, Ashley Kate Barber, Paige Stegall and Kate Vann.

Coach Murkerson expressed pride in her team’s performance.

“Fifty three teams competed in the meet and the Gymnast-A-Cats were amazing,” she said. “They were in first place until the final sessions where they were edged, and I mean literally edged, out of first place. We were edged out by a mere one point and four tenths and five one hundreths of a tenth.

“In the final result, we finished fourth with a score of 116.175.

“Atlanta Gymnastic Center was first with a score of 117.625, Tuck & Tumble was second with a score of 116.575, and Flip City was third with a score of 116.250. We were the only team from South Georgia in the top four. The others were from the Atlanta area.

“I could not have been any prouder of the girls. They gave 100 percent and Southwest Georgia has a lot to be proud of. The team is made up of gymnasts from Bainbridge, Colquitt, Blakely and Donalsonville.”

Coach Murkerson pointed out that gymnastics is a precise sport and the scoring system used judges the minuet details and leaves no room for even the smallest errors.

In July, the Gynast-A-Cats will compete in Nationals at The Wide World of Sports Center in Disney World. They will represent South Georgia, be part of Team Georgia and have the honor of wearing Team Georgia Leotards.

Georgia is the reigning national champion, an honor they have held 10 straight years. Their platform this year is recycle.