Covenant Youth Places Third in Major Competition

Post a Comment » Written on April 28th, 2006     
Filed under: News
WASILLA, AK (April 28, 2006) – A painful injury did not deter 14-year-old gymnast Alyssa Koehrer from scoring a personal best and earning a bronze medal at a major competition earlier this month.

Koehrer (at left in accompanying photo), who attends Mat-Su Covenant Church, took third place in the uneven bars at the USA Gymnastics Region II (Pacific) competition held in Boise, Idaho. “I was very excited because it was my first big accomplishment in a long time,” Koehrer says.

Alyssa Koehrer Her score of 9.65 was even a personal best for Koehrer, who was the only one of 150 gymnasts to complete a handstand half-pirouette. The finish was especially pleasing because it is the gymnast’s favorite event, she says. She placed 19th in the overall standings.

Koehrer demonstrated her toughness, overcoming a hyper-extended knee she suffered only weeks earlier – one week before the qualifying Alaska state competition. That could have been disastrous and broken her spirit, especially given that she had not been injured all season.

Despite the pain, Koehrer responded by placing third in the overall, winning the bars, and taking second in both the beam and floor exercise. “She was performing through tears,” her coach, Leon Reynolds, told the Anchorage Daily News.

Koehrer has been in gymnastics and practices three to four hours a week, four and a half hours a day, says her mother, Denise. Koehrer is considered a level 8 gymnast, in which the athletes are expected to perform much more difficult routines than in previous levels.

Reynolds says he believes Koehrer will reach level 10, at which colleges offer scholarships. Gymnasts beyond level 10 are able to compete for spots on the U.S. Olympics team.

Now that she’s home, Koehrer says she is “resting and healing.”

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