Kourtney Johnston wins All-Around title
By John George email@example.com Kourtney Johnston proved where a little extra effort can get you. The girl Perham gymnastics coach Charlie Fleck calls the hardest worker in the gym got her just rewards last weekend as she dominated the Class A Indi...
By John George
Kourtney Johnston proved where a little extra effort can get you.
The girl Perham gymnastics coach Charlie Fleck calls the hardest worker in the gym got her just rewards last weekend as she dominated the Class A Individual Competition. She won the uneven bar title with a meet-high 9.8. She repeated as champion in the floor exercise (9.7), and she edged two teammates for the All-Around title.
Just for good measure, she added a second place medal on the balance beam (9.5) and a sixth place medal from the vault (9.575).
All this one day after leading the Jackets to a third straight team title.
Not a bad weekend.
I didnt quite think this was possible (winning the All-Around), but I had a feeling wed have a good day, Johnston said.
The we shes referring to is her teammates, who, all agreed, didnt have their best day in the team competition Friday, even though they won their third straight title by nearly four points.
I think we had yesterday over and thats what we focus on all year, Johnston said. We were much more relaxed today. I think it helps that it was the second day and we were more used to the place and the equipment.
Its not like she hadnt been on center stage at Roy Wilkins Auditorium before. Johnston won three medals last year. She won the floor, finished third on the bars and fourth in the All-Around.
She was neck and neck with teammate Miranda Schmitz for the All-Around title after two events. But a .10 point advantage on the bars set her apart.
I felt best on the bars, Johnston said. I was super nervous. After I made my release, I just had to make sure I saw the bar before I let go and hit it. I had to really concentrate.
I guess I knew it was close (between her and Miranda going for the A-A title), Johnston added. Im so thrilled that we got the top three. I bet Charlies happy.
Charlie was happy.
Shes (Johnstons) such a hard worker, I couldnt be more happy or proud of her, Fleck said. That was a lot of fun today. They were really at easy and they came out smokin. Just a phenomenal performance by tremendous group of athletes.
It was just another day for Johnston, who was the teams most consistent performer all season. She was the Jackets high scorer in team competition Friday with an All-Around of 38.40.
Whats next for the eight-time State medalist? A clean sweep in 2007?
I dont know about that, she said. Ill just have to get back into the gym and keep working.
Not far behind
Schmitz finished second in the All-Around (38.325) without winning an individual event. She finished second to Johnston in the bars with a score of 9.7 and she was third on the beam with a 9.5.
In fact, Perhams top-three (Johnston, Schmitz and Betsy Mann) all had a 9.5 average on the beam. Mann won the title with a superior judge score of 9.5125. Johnston was second with a 9.5 and Schmitz was third with a superior judge score of 9.4375.
Schmitz would have would have won the floor exercise, had she qualified at sections. Her core on the floor for the All-Around was 9.7, but her superior judge score was higher than Johnstons.
Mann, behind her first place balance beam performance, was third in the All-Around with a 37.70.
The teams top-three finish in the All-Around is something Fleck never thought hed seen.
Thats amazing, Fleck said. The great thing about is any one of them were capable of winning it.
All three were named to the All-State Elite Team, which consists of the top-five all-around gymnasts in the State. Johnston had a 38.067 average, Schmitz had a 37.687 average and Mann finished with a 37.670 average.