By Bob Flynn
Special to the Register
The Excel Compulsory and Optional gymnastics teams had a strong showing at the recent USAG State Championships.
At the Level 3 & 4 State Meet in Frankfort on March 24 and 25, the Excel Level 3 Team was named the 2013 USAG Small Team State Champions. This is the fifth-consecutive year Excel has come away with the top team honors.
The Level 4 team finished fourth in the large team category. Excel crowned one Individual Level 3 All-Around Champion — 8 year-old Keaton Hall — in addition to four event title winners — Maddie Jo Russell (Level 3, age 8 Jr - balance beam), Erin Hatfield (Level 3, age 7- balance beam), Skylar Lester (Level 3, age 9jr- balance beam), and Aly Vasquez (Level 4, age 7- balance beam).
The Level 5-10 Championships were held March 16-17 in Bardstown.
The Level 5 team had the strongest finish being named the Small Team State Runners-up.
Excel teams were fourth in the Xcel Gold division and fifth overall in Level 7. Excel had some outstanding individual performers, including Julia Kiser who nearly swept the Xcel Gold division, winning the all-around title, vault, uneven bars, and floor.
Kiser was edged out by teammate Serena White for the balance beam title.
In the Xcel Platinum division, Jada Morgan won balance beam and uneven bars in addition to taking home the all-around title.
Level 7 gymnast Kelsey Woods received first place on the balance beam, bringing Excel’s total number of optional titles to seven event winners and two all-around champions.
Another notable accomplishment was Level 8 gymnast Selina Flannery qualifying to represent Kentucky at the 2013 Regional Championships in Bowling Green, Ohio. Selina was selected based on her impressive all-around score.