3 times the excitement; Trio of Austin gymnasts looking forward to hitting the state stage

Published 7:57 pm Wednesday, February 21, 2018

One Austin senior will be putting the finishing touches on her gymnastics career as two other Packers make their state debut as individuals at the Minnesota Class A individual state meet at the University of Minnesota Sports Pavilion in Minneapolis Saturday.

Jen Boyle, a senior, will compete in the all-around competition for the Packers, while Sam Sheldon, a junior, will compete in beam, and Jordan DeLaMater, a sophomore, will compete on bars.

Austin’s Jennifer Boyle comes off the vault on her first attempt in a quadrangular this season. Herald File Photo

Boyle won a state bars title in 2015, she took 13th in the all-around in 2016 and finished 12th in the all-around in 2017.

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“I’m not too nervous,” Boyle said. “It’s not my first meet at state and I know what it feels like to compete in that place. With it being may last meet ever, I definitely want it to be my best day. I do my best to stay relaxed by keeping my mind off it. I don’t think of it as a state meet and I think about it as any other meet. Instead of thinking about the things that could go wrong, I think about the things that could go right.”

Boyle is excited to finish her gymnastics career with Sheldon and DeLaMater, who have both made big strides this year.

“I think we’re all very proud. It’s definitely a big accomplishment to make it to state,” Boyle said. “It’s especially exciting for Jordan and Sam. They’ve been working very hard and it’s nice to see them make it to state well I’m still on the team.”

Sheldon has competed at state in the team aspect before, but this will be her first time in the individual meet. She’s ready to give it her all on the big stage after she spent eight hour days working out at Pine Island over the summer.

“I’m really excited to compete. I’m more excited than nervous,” Sheldon said. “I worked really hard and it took a lot of time and effort.”

DeLaMater said the pressure is off for her and she’s considering the state meet as the icing on the cake after a season of hard work.

“I’m just there to have fun. Section had more of the nerves and at state you just get to have,” DeLaMater said. “Sam and I both pushed each other to get better in each event. We’re like each other’s competition and we’ve come really far in the past year.”

While Sheldon and DeLaMater are excited to compete, they’re also going to serve as supporters for Boyle in the all-around.

“We’re always there for each other and we’ll probably cheer a lot more louder than normal,” Sheldon said.