Wildcat gymnasts return to practice with youth and talent
December 2, 2010
By Dan Catchpole
After finishing fourth in the state tournament last year, Mount Si High School’s gymnastics team faces a tougher road this season.
Two of the team’s top three gymnasts — Georgia Reynolds and Rachel Karavias — graduated. The remaining gymnast, senior and co-captain Kennedy Richmond, will lead the team, which expects to remain competitive.
“I think we’re going to be just as strong” as last season, coach Jessica Easthope said. “We did lose two strong competitors, but the girls from last year are stronger and more experienced.”
The team has several key pieces returning this year and a few new faces with lots of promise.
Richmond is the team’s strongest and most experienced gymnast. She’s also a one-woman cheer squad, constantly shouting encouragement to her teammates in practice.
She and co-captain Tandi Duvall provide leadership for a young team.
Junior Lexi Swanson also returns. Last year, she was one of the team’s top scorers.
A key part of the Wildcats’ success this season will be its sophomores, especially Hannah Richmond (Kennedy’s younger sister), Jessica Trotto and Elizabeth Holmes.
The three surprised Easthope last year with the skill and maturity they demonstrated as freshmen.
New faces with promise include two freshmen, Carisa Castagno and Aubry McMichael, and a junior, Brooke Bonner. Easthope said they will help round out the team.
The Wildcats have plenty of depth, which helped them succeed last year. The team doesn’t have any glaring weaknesses, but floor routines need to be practiced.
“Floor is going to be a little interesting,” Easthope said.
The gymnasts are learning new routines, which require time.
Fortunately, Kennedy Richmond’s strongest event is floor. Last season, she placed fourth at state. She also finished eighth on beam at state.
Hannah Richmond and Holmes have also shown skill in their floor routines.
Over the summer, the Washington Interscholastic Athletic Association changed how performances on the beam are scored.
“I don’t think the routines we had last year are going to score as well” this season, Easthope said.
However, she said she expects it to be a minor road bump.
Leading the Wildcats on the uneven bars will likely be the older Richmond sister or Castagno.
The team is strongest in the vault, Easthope said.
Dan Catchpole: 392-6434, ext. 246, or email@example.com.