Anderson takes first in regional all-around

Posted on 04 May 2017 by LeslieM

By Gary Curreri

Lighthouse Point’s Taylor Anderson is showing Michigan State University that they made a good choice in offering her a full gymnastics scholarship.

The problem is that the Spartans still have to wait two years for her services. Anderson, a Level 10 gymnast at American Twisters in Coconut Creek, had a good showing in three of her four events at the Region 8 Level 10 championships where she finished first in the All-Around (37.275).

The 16-year-old was first in the bars (9.600), tied for first in the beam (9.400) and tied for third in the floor (9.350) at the Regional competition at the Kidsport Gymnastics Academy in Burlington, North Carolina that featured 495 gymnasts in both Level 9 and Level 10.

Anderson also tied for 18th in the vault (8.925). Her efforts on bars and beam tied her personal bests for the events.

Gymnastics means a lot to me because I do it so much and I have done it my whole life,” said Anderson, a sophomore at Cardinal Gibbons High School in Fort Lauderdale.

I love doing all of the flips and having fun…just being able to do what gymnastics is,” Anderson added. “It is just a crazy feeling knowing what to do and how do it.”

Anderson, who gave her verbal commitment to Michigan State University, earlier in the school year, also had a strong showing at the prestigious Tim Rand Invitational competition at the Greater Ft. Lauderdale/Broward County Convention Center. The meet attracted 1,300 competitors.

In placing second in the all-around (37.525), Anderson won the bars (9.675); placed second in the beam (9.400); tied for fifth on the floor (9.300) and was seventh in the vault (9.150).

Admittedly, it is like a job with a 6-day, 30+ hours a week commitment.

It is really tough, but it pays off,” Anderson said. “You have to think about the outcome of it and what is going to happen in the future.”

Taylor comes in the gym everyday and works really hard for her goals and their aspirations,” said American Twisters coach Christina Ramirez.

Highlands advances 11 to state track meet

Highlands Christian Academy Sydney Blackburn won the shot put (35-08) and placed second in the discus with a throw of 120-08.00 at the Region 4-1A competition at Westminster Academy last week.

Freshman Ciara Huntley was second in the triple jump (30-07.50) and junior Sasha Graham placed third in the 400-meter dash (1:02.25) to qualify for the girls state championships. Highlands Academy was sixth in the meet with 48.25 points.

After placing fourth in the 1,600-meter run (4:44.16), junior Ryan Szklany battled back to win the boys 3,200-meter run (10:09.64).

Highlands Christian senior Josiah Ritzer was second in the boys discus (121-11), and third in the shot put (42-10.25) and senior Jake Peterson was third in the boys 110-meter hurdles (16.47). Senior Herman Robinson was fourth in the shot put (41-07.75) and freshman Alex Villas was fourth in the triple jump (38-10.50).

The Knights qualified three athletes in the pole vault taking second, third and fourth: Sophomores Chanz Miller (12-00), Kyle Coulson (11-06.25) and junior Scott Bush (10-11.75). The boys were fourth in the meet with 67 points.

The state championships are this weekend at IMG Academy Stadium in Bradenton.

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