Pine-Richland gymnasts optimistic despite loss
Sunday, December 24, 2017 | 12:15 PM
Right out of the gate this season, the Pine-Richland gymnastics team was competing in quite the measuring stick matchup against Moon, a program that has collected three WPIAL titles in the last five years.
And in their first meet of the season, a young Rams squad saw mixed results.
“Moon beat us. We had a couple of girls dealing with injuries that weren't able to do all of the events that we were hoping for. We were competitive with Moon in three of the four events,” Pine-Richland coach Alex Jewart said.
“We beat Moon on balance beam by a little bit. So, it looks like right now, balance beam is the strong event for us. That's a good event to be solid on. It was close in floor exercise and vault, but on the uneven bars we got beat pretty handily.”
All in all, Jewart described the meet as a step in the right direction.
Most the Rams' roster is composed of freshmen and sophomores. With first-year athletes Sidney Jones, Madison Abbate and Emily Yowan, Jewart said he is still figuring out their best events. The same can likely be said for sophomore Adrianna Aviolo and newcomer Tali Klass, who recently moved to the district.
While all five gymnasts are contributing in meaningful ways, the team's lone seniors — Allie Lehmann and Lainey Simon — bring a wealth of experience and noticeable talent to the roster.
“Allie Lehmann, she'll be solid on all four events for us. She should end up being one of the top all-around individuals in the WPIAL. Our other senior, Lainey Simon, she will really be a particularly strong competitor in the vault and floor exercise for us,” Jewart said.
“Beyond that, it's just so valuable having two senior leaders like that. You can't beat having senior leadership that inspires the other girls to challenge themselves to be better.”
Another member of the team, Bria Reinert, is back for her sophomore season after displaying some potential as a freshman last year. According to her coach, she may be one solid meet away from competing in the all-around scoring competition at WPIALs.
After the holiday break, Pine-Richland is scheduled to participate in a meet with Baldwin and Thomas Jefferson at 7 p.m. Jan. 11 at Jewart's Gymnastics.
Kevin Lohman is a freelance writer.