The Mercer Island gymnastics team tumbled its way to a season-high team score during a dual-meet against Sammamish on Dec. 12 at Sammamish High School.
Sammamish won the meet with a team score of 177.5, finishing ahead of Mercer Island’s 160.4. Three 4A KingCo schools also competed at the meet, with Woodinville finishing on top with a team score of 175, followed by Mount Si (161) in second and Redmond (119) in third.
After putting up a team score of 144 against Redmond in their first meet of the season on Dec. 5, the Islanders improved their team score by 16 points in their second meet. Mercer Island head coach Olivia Harvey said the team had been focused on cleaning up their routines leading to the meet on Dec. 12.
“It was a great improvement from the last meet,” Harvey said. “I think they really had some fun. We had some injuries too, so we were kind of taking it easy, but we still did amazing.”
Mercer Island sophomore Rachel Ressmeyer placed third in the all-around competition with a combined score of 35.6. Ressmeyer finished second on vault (9.1), fourth on bars (8.6), tied for second on beam (9.2) and ninth on floor (8.7). Harvey said Ressmeyer provides the other gymnasts with someone to look up to and learn from.
“She’s got such good dedication and she’s very focused,” Harvey said. “It’s great when you have (other) girls look up and see that dedication. It really helps motivate them.”
Junior Ava Motroni had an all-around score of 33.35. Motroni tied for third on vault (8.8), fourth on beam (8.8) and tied for third on floor (9.25). Senior Emerey Sampson tied for sixth on vault with an 8.6. Junior Carly Lightfoot and freshman Sam Sulla tied for seventh on floor with an 8.8.
Harvey said as the season has gone on, the gymnasts have been motivated to improve their routines and get tougher skills to increase their start value.
“We have a lot of talent that maybe we didn’t see the first couple of weeks,” Harvey said. “Now that we’re really getting into it, we’re seeing a lot more girls really pushing themselves to get those bigger skills to increase their own scores.” The next competition for the Islanders will be a home meet against Lake Washington on Jan. 9 at Mercer Island High School.
After an impressive team performance against Sammamish, Harvey said there are still areas they can improve before their next meet against Lake Washington.
“We still have some stuff to work on,” Harvey said. “There’s always room for improvement and we’re going to push forward and see how we do in the next one.”