Strong balance beam earns team gold for Ontario

Halifax, NS – There is a truism in women’s gymnastics that “to win, you must stay on the beam”.  And that is just what team Ontario did tonight to win gold in the women’s gymnastics team competition at the Canada Games Centre. 

Team Ontario, Team BC and Team Quebec pose with their medals after the women's team competition at the Canada Games Centre

Ontario led off strong with a 54.10 on vault, led by anchor Krishna Yemany’s 13.85.  The team also counted the scores of Mikaela Gerber with 13.4, Sabrina Gill and Jordyn Pedersen with identical score of 13.4.  In the second rotation, they opened the door when five of the seven competitors fell on uneven bars and had to settle for a 52.0 team score on the apparatus.  With seven gymnasts competing on each apparatus and the top four scores counting toward the team total, there was little room for error.  

But after a bye in the third rotation, where Ontario had time to regain their composure, they went to the balance beam and nailed it.  Sabrina Gill, 2010 junior national champion, led the team and received the highest individual apparatus score of the evening with a 15.2.  All four of Ontario’s scores on beam were above 14.0, totalling an impressive 58.2. 

“We had pretty rough bars but we came back.  I’m proud of everyone” said Sabrina Gill who is also the top qualifier for Tuesday’s All-Around Finals.

After beam, Ontario never looked back, and continued their dominance on floor exercise to solidify the gold medal with a 219.9 total team score. 

“Winning feels amazing” said team coach Susan Manjak.  “We’ve dreamed about this for a long time.  Our goal was gold.  We achieved that today and I couldn’t be more proud of the girls.”

The silver medal went to team BC, led by the youngest gymnast of the competition, Shallon Olsen.  BC had the always challenging task to begin the night on balance beam and had to count two falls.  Taylor Ricci and Olsen both had falls but still managed to earn the highest scores for their team with 13.1 and 13.45 respectively.

Olsen continued to show why good things come in small packages with a stellar floor performance that included world level tumbling.  She scored a meet high 14.2 which helped BC finish with a total team score of 214.7.

Bronze went to defending champion Québec with a score of 210.65. The team showed good consistency on all four apparatus, but it just wasn’t enough to compete against the high difficulty routines of BC and Ontario.

Alberta (202.95) finished fourth, followed by Manitoba (198.1), Saskatchewan (193.05) and Nova Scotia (179.1).  The local team had the chance to compete in front of a sell out crowd this morning in the first flight of competition.

Competition resumes tomorrow at 11:40 am with the men’s team competition.

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