CASTLEROCK – When faced with the pressure of high-level state competition, Telluride’s young up-and-coming gymnasts didn’t crumble. In fact, the five local athletes tumbled, twirled, and took flight at last weekend’s Colorado Eagles State gymnastics finale.
And when the dust had settled, it was a Telluride gymnast who topped the charts in her age group and skill class. Taylor Dahl took home the Level 4 all-around gold for her age group after stealing the show with first place finishes in the beam and vault and a second place in floor.
“She had done well in competitions on the Western Slope, but I was very impressed that she was also able to do as well as she did at this Denver-area competition,” said Telluride gymnastics coach Teresa Brachle, who started the Telluride Gymnastics program three years ago.
Joining Dahl at the state meet were Telluride gymnasts Justus Tudor, Masy Desmarais, Mikaela Balkind, Jessie Wayland, and Ping Taylor. Held last Saturday and Sunday in Castlerock, the event showcased the best young gymnasts in the Colorado Eagles gymnastics league, and represented the culmination of the Telluride gymnasts’ competitive season (which began last September.)
Taylor rocketed to a best-of-the-weekend personal finish of 4th in the vault, which helped catapult her to 7th place all-around in her age and skill class. Tudor snuck in a 10th place finish in the all-around after placing in the top ten in vault, bars, and floor, while teammate Balkind’s score of 9.05 in the floor also put her in the top ten for that event. Desmarais landed a personal best score of 9.0 in the vault, while Wayland landed a best weekend score of 8.8 in the beam.
“It was the first time at a state meet for most of the girls, and even for the ones who had gone last year, this year they all showed huge improvement in their composure in competition,” Brachle said.
Telluride placed 5th overall as a team at the Eagles State Meet, which represented a big step for this still quite young team.
“They hit all of their routines, and overall did very well,” Brachle said.
Telluride gymnasts Griffin Mueller, Emma Spaulding, and Skylar Nunn had also qualified for the state meet, but were not able to attend.