The Emerald Ridge Jaguars are clicking on all cylinders as the Class 4A state gymnastics meet approaches next month.
The Jaguars, who won the state championship last season, are undefeated and have posted the highest team scores across all events in the South Puget Sound League this year.
Emerald Ridge head coach Bobbi Jones said the next three weeks will be a great barometer for her team as they prepare for the postseason.
“We have four league meets this month which will really give us a good idea on how we compare with the rest of the SPSL,” said Jones, who expects Puyallup will be their toughest test.
“We have a lot of new gymnasts on the team this year, so developing routines and skills that meet the requirements for the events have been the focus for us,” she said.
Jaguars team captains Shannon Cribbin and Mandi Hovde have risen to the occasion in early season competitions.
“Shannon has placed first in all-around at both of the meets she competed in, and Mandi has placed in the top 10 in all four of her events, too,” Jones said.
“We continue to be very strong in vault and are improving our skills, which is very exciting,” she added. “We have been strong in all events.”
The Jaguars will attempt to defend their title at the Tacoma Dome Exhibition Center. Jones said earning back-to-back championships would be exhilarating.
“Our mindset is to go to state again this year and defend our title,” she said. “The team is motivated and driven.”
Sports Editor Shaun Scott can be reached at 253-552-7002 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.