It’s been a strange gymnastics season, with matchups only against a handful of teams and no fans in attendance.
But it’s also been South Kingstown’s best season in a decade.
The Rebels finished the regular season with a 7-1 record, capping it off with a victory over defending state champion La Salle this past weekend.
“From a team standpoint, to finish 7-1 and beat La Salle, that’s great,” head coach Mike Franco said. “Beating La Salle was probably the best way we could have finished the regular season.”
There will be no state meet this season due to the pandemic, but teams will have a postseason opportunity this weekend in a series of regional championships. There is also an individual state competition set for Sunday.
The Rebels have leaned on a deep crop of young gymnasts. Last year, the freshman class brought a significant influx of talent. This year, it happened again, giving the Rebels 14 underclassmen, many of whom are experienced gymnasts.
The Rebels also have seniors Katherine Arnold and Autumn Smith to lead the way, along with junior standout Kayla Young. The sophomore class is led by Brooke O’Donnell and Anna Coutu. Caroline Casey has been the biggest contributor from the freshman class.
The Rebels lost their first matchup with La Salle but have improved by about five points over the course of the short season. In Sunday’s rematch, they trailed by a point heading into vault. It’s their strongest event and they delivered, taking the lead in the process.
“We’ve improved from about a 130 team up to 135,” Franco said. “That just kind of speaks to how these kids are getting better.”
Other contributors include Olivia Kay, Kyla Speredelozzi, Arden Ford, Leah DiRoma, Brianna Kroll, Brianna Olszewski, Bella Veltry, Catherine Davis, Hazel Amey, Scarlett Segal, Katherine Howe and Faye LeBlanc.