While some sports teams hit home runs, one team flips and tumbles its way to the top. This year, the gymnastics team is smaller than usual, having gone from 35 team members last year to 24 members now. This is predominantly due to coach staffing. “The assistant coach, Luke Dela Cazada, was going to be coaching with us but he had too much on his plate,” gymnastics head coach Lesley de Dios said.
Though one coach was lost this year, members of the team look on the bright side. “It’s unfortunate that the assistant coach isn’t coaching this year,” senior varsity gymnast Alexis Kinard said. “However, with one coach, the decrease in size of the team is definitely for the better. Less people on the team means more all-around competitors which can definitely help our team scores in meets.”
Despite the changes, the team has gotten third place or above at every meet where they competed. “We’ve been doing pretty well so far, JV has been getting first on every event except bars, because we have three people when we need five,” senior JV gymnast Stacy Gee said.
On April 18, both JV and Varsity competed against Palo Alto High, Gunn High, Kimball High and Burlingame High at Gymtowne in South San Francisco. Varsity won with 143.650 points, with Kimball trailing behind with 140.100 points, while JV snagged third place with 154.500 points, falling to Burlingame with 169.150 points and Kimball with 159.000 points. In gymnastics, gymnasts can do four different events: the vault, bars, beam and floor. In these events gymnasts are given a score, zero being the lowest and ten being the highest. At the end of a meet, all the individual scores from a team are added up and that is the final score, so a larger team would have an advantage over a smaller one.
On April 12, the Cardinals competed against Burlingame High, Cupertino High, Half-Moon Bay High and Mercy High in a home meet. While the varsity squad won first place with 138.600 points, JV took home third place. Notably, sophomore varsity gymnast Heather Weiss won first place all-around at both home meets.
However, before their wins, the girls had to face defeat. They started off the season on April 7 with a home meet against the St. Francis Lancers, and both JV and Varsity lost to the Lancers; Varsity, 142.000 to 146.200 points, and JV, 170.900 to 138.900 points.
Cheer on the girls in their next meet at 5 p.m. on May 6, at the Classic Gymnastics gym in Tracy as they compete in the North Santa Clara Valley Athletic League Junior Varsity Finals.
A version of this article first appeared in the April 29, 2011 print edition of The Lowell.