Packer gymnasts have experience on their side for state meet

Published 4:46 pm Monday, February 20, 2023

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A trio of Austin gymnasts are ready to put on their best display at the Minnesota State Gymnastics Met as the Packers will compete in the Class A Individual championships in Roy Wilkins Auditorium at 6 p.m. Saturday.

Sophomore Kiki Rodriguez and senior Hannah Fritz are both are heading to state for the second time and sophomore Katelynn Klouse is making her debut at state.

Rodriguez will compete on vault and floor, Fritz will be on vault and bars and Klouse will be on the bars and beam.

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Fritz is going to try out for the Winona State University gymnastics team in the fall, but this weekend will certainly be her last meet as a Packer.

“I worked really hard this season to get better and go to state again,” Fritz said. “It’s really exciting. I’m going to have fun and get to know some of the other gymnasts.”

Rodriguez was a wide eyed freshman at last year’s state meet, but this time around she knows what the atmosphere will look like and she’s ready to face off against top competition.

“I’m definitely more prepared,” Rodriguez said. “I know what it’s like now and I’m not going to be as nervous. You have to have fun and don’t let the nerves get the best of you.”

Klouse may be a little overwhelmed when she gets to state, but she’s had her teammates to lean on throughout the season. She’s ready to see what it’s like to compete in the most pressure packed event at the state meet in front of a big crowd.

“I’m a little nervous for beam because it can get shaky. You just have to take it slow, I guess,” Klouse said. “We’ve definitely supported each other with little critiques, but at the end of the day the coaches are doing all of the work for us.”

Last year, Rodriguez took 20th in the floor at state and Fritz was 44th in vault and 41st in beam.