Local gymnasts shine at Disney World

Garden Gators from Giant Gymnastics take prizes

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  • The two girls in blue at center: Ariana Begraft, on left, of Hampton, and Arianna Frank of Glenwood Photos provided by Giant Gymnastics

  • From left, Danielle Bruce of Vernon and Mia Ganter of Hackettstown

  • The youngest Bronze gymnasts, from left: Lucy Towey, Aubrey Hayes, Teagan Tardive and Kelly Hayowyk

  • Bronze gymnast Lucy Towey, Kelly Hayowyk, Teagan Tardive, Aubrey Hayes, Ariana Begraft, Arianna Frank, Lilly Gretkowski and Emma Hamilton

  • Level 5 gymnasts, from left: Cameron Volpe of Hampton, Meagan Ward of Stillwater, Meghan Smith of Sparta, Fiona Postas of Franklin and Katie Hlywa of Stillwater

— The gymnasts of Giant Gymnastics of Sparta and Hackettstown, the Garden Gators, attended their first meet outside of their region in January. Not only was it outside their usual region, it was the furthest they’ve traveled so far. Members of the team drove and flew to the happiest place, Walt Disney World, for the Sand Dollar Invitational. The meet took place at the ESPN Wide World of Sports arena, was attended by thousands of gymnasts from all over the country, and the world, and could even be viewed on television.

Local gymnasts, who were competing in the Levels 7 and 8 Junior Olympics sessions, Caroline Dietz (7) and Reese Abrams (8) from Sparta, shined with high scores and placement in the highly competitive meet.

Caroline placed 1st for Bars and Vault, with scores of 9.425 and 9.525 respectively. She also scored 9.05 on Beam.

Reese placed 3rd on Vault with an amazing score of 9.05, and 6th for both Beam and Bars.

The girls took 5th (Caroline - 36.5) and 6th (Reese - 33.8) in the All Around awards.

While all of our gymnasts did their absolute best and had a great time, there were some other notable placements over the weekend:

Xcel Bronze, 9-10 year old

Lilly Gretkowski of Sparta: 2nd place on Floor.

Xcel Bronze, 11 and up

Ariana Begraft of Hampton: 4th place on Floor.

Arianna Frank of Glenwood: 6th place on Beam, 3rd place on Bars and All Around, and 2nd place on Floor.

Xcel Gold, 13 & up

Mia Ganter of Hackettstown: 3rd on Vault and 4th on Bars.

Xcel Platinum

Emily Rodriguez of Stillwater: 6th place on Vault.

Junior Olympic Level 2

Hailey Kopec of Hackettstown: 6th place on Vault.

Isabelle Jean-Louis of Hackettstown: 5th place on Floor.

Ava Liferiedge: 2nd on Bars, 3rd on Floor, and 5th place All Around.

Junior Olympic Level 4

Karen Maasbach of Sparta: 5th place All Around, 4th place on Floor, and 3rd on Beam.

For more information about events, classes and programs at Giant Gymnastics, visit them online at www.GiantGymnastics.com or call 973-579-9400.

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