A winning day: Fadness wins second All-Around state title

Placers in the Minnesota State Class A Individual Gymnastics Meet all-around hold up their hands Saturday after being awarded their medals. Sela Fadness won her second consecutive state title in the all-round while teammates Abby Bickler finished fourth and Maddie Mullenbach finished fifth. Eric Johnson/photodesk@austindailyherald.com

Placers in the Minnesota State Class A Individual Gymnastics Meet all-around hold up their hands Saturday after being awarded their medals. Sela Fadness won her second consecutive state title in the all-round while teammates Abby Bickler finished fourth and Maddie Mullenbach finished fifth. Eric Johnson/photodesk@austindailyherald.com

MINNEAPOLIS — As usual Austin senior Fadness was a ball of nerves at the Class ‘A’ individual state gymnastics meet a the University of Minnesota Sports Pavilon Saturday, and once again she was up to the task.

With Melrose’s Jailyn Brinkman on her heels, Fadness delivered on a very difficult beam routine and scored mark of 9.675 to help lock up her second straight All-Around state title. Fadness sealed the deal on her final event of the day when she won her third straight floor title with a score of 9.70.

Austin's Sela Fadness performs on the balance beam during the Minnesota State Class A Individual Meet Saturday at the University of Minnesota Sports Pavilion in Minneapolis. Eric Johnson/photodesk@austindailyherald.com

Austin’s Sela Fadness performs on the balance beam during the Minnesota State Class A Individual Meet Saturday at the University of Minnesota Sports Pavilion in Minneapolis. Eric Johnson/photodesk@austindailyherald.com

“This was a great meet and a great day,” Fadness said. “I’m so glad things went the way they did.”

Fadness took home state titles in the beam and the vault, where she scored a 9.775 and she took fourth on the bars with a 9.550.

Right before Fadness took to the beam, Brinkman put up a 9.650 on the event, so Fadness knew she had her work cut out for her if she wanted to repeat as state champ.

“The beam was so stressful for me. It’s definitely my hardest event mentally,” Fadness said. “The end of my beam routine was the most relieved I’ve felt in my whole life. It’s such a mental struggle for me because I throw a back-hand spring layout, which nobody else does because it’s so risky. It was so nice to hit that today.”

Fadness put up a career-best All-Around score of 38.7 to win the meet and Brinkman finished in second with a 38.2375. The Class ‘A’ state record for an All-Around is 38.75 and was set by Mindy Myhre of Mahtomedi in 1992.

“I feel better about this one, because my all-around was my personal best,” Fadness said. “I went four for four and I couldn’t ask for more than that.”

Fadness felt plenty of pressure coming in as the defending champ and she credited others with keeping her focused towards her goal.

“I have a great support system behind me,” Fadness said. “Between my mom, Joe [Aase] and my dad. They shoot me words of encouragement all of the time and they kept telling me I can do it. I just think I can do this [after talking to them].”

Austin head coach Mark Raymond said its very rare for a gymnast to win back-to-back titles at state because of the pressure it puts on the defending champ.
“Sela did a really nice job and it was fun to watch her,” Raymond said.
Fadness plans on competing with the Hamline University gymnastics team next season. She leaves behind an Austin team that has competed in four of the last five state meets.

“They’re the ones who are going to carry on Austin gymnastics,” Fadness said. “It’s definitely going to be very competitive next year.”

 

 

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