Gymnastics gives athletes another opportunity to compete


PHOTO Submitted by Ashley Murphey

Sophomore Ashley Murphy does a handstand on uneven bars while training for her club team. She has been training for eight years.

Jake Lee, Writer

The sounds of tumbling gymnasts across a mat will be joining the sound of basketballs pounding on the court, cheerleaders screaming, and hockey pucks sliding across the ice during this winter’s sport season.

Girls from FHS are joining girls from Linden High School and Lake Fenton to compete as a co-op gymnastics team.

A coach, Nancy Holdan, is already in place for the team. Holdan has been involved in the Southern Lakes gymnastics program for more than eight years now.

“Even though there are a lot of conflicts between club gymnastics and school run gymnastics, we still expect to see 10 girls come out and try this sport for the first year,” Athletic Director Michael Bakker said. “The higher caliber girls who have been competing in gymnastics for years we believe will stick with their club programs, so we encourage those who are new to gymnastics to come out and join the team.”

Adding new sports provides an opportunity for people who may not be involved in athletics to try something new.

“The women’s gymnastics program is a great opportunity for new people interested in the sport to give it a try,” junior Justin Murphy said. “I think adding sports to FHS’ program would be a good thing because it lets people try new sports they may not have played before and lets others who do play the sport, play it for their school.”

Untitled InfographicMurphy has been involved in club gymnastics for many years. Sophomore Ashley Murphy has also participated in gymnastics for eight years and she has even competed in the Junior Olympics with her club team.

“I will continue to train with my club team this year. I cannot compete for both,” Ashley Murphy said. “I think a couple of girls will try out for the school team.”
Many love seeing a new sport added to Fenton’s athletic program.

“I didn’t know we were going to have a girls gymnastics program until recently,” sophomore Ethan Follet said. “But since I found out I think that it is pretty cool that FHS is trying to include all sports for everyone who wants to participate in them.”

This has raised the question among students of whether other popular sports may be considered for students as well, such as boys and girls lacrosse.

“Girls gymnastics is a MHSAA sport and boys gymnastics is not. We can’t add a varsity sport that is not MHSAA approved,” Bakker said, “Boys and girls lacrosse are the last two sports that the MHSAA has to offer that Fenton does not currently have.”