Tour Selection provides a starting point to the year
by Randy Pascal
With no one ready to seriously challenge for a berth on the Ontario Tour Selection team just yet, coach Terra Davidson and the Sudbury
Laurels massaged the expectations for their eight athlete contingent, just a touch, creating a wonderful starting point for a new year of competitive
“It was probably one of our best all-around placings that we have had, especially for our level sixes,” suggested Davidson. “They are up against as many
as a hundred athletes in their category, and they were all above the halfway mark.”
“We kind of look at it as a practice meet,” Davidson added. “If you make Tour, bonus, but this is really about getting the ready for the first
qualifier.” Interestingly enough, the Sudbury entries represented a wide variety of different stages of development, starting with the likes of 13 year old
“I would have been one of the youngest people there,” admitted the grade 8 student at Carl A. Nesbitt Elementary School. Thankfully, nerves did
not get the better of her. “You have to be confident, you have to forget that there are people that are there watching you, so that you perform as you
would in practice.”
“I stuck my beam routine, which I am really proud of, because I’ve been struggling with that for a while. On floor, I had a really good routine, getting
a “nine”, which is really good for me.” Competing with a goal of reaching provincials come April, Eberlein knows that she still has her work cut out for
her to reach her overall score of 36.
“On bars, my casts are a little bit low, compared to some of the other people,” she said. “I have to get those higher. On vault, I need to work on
sticking my landings. Normally, my vaults are really good, but if I don’t stick my landings, it’s iffy.”
While Eberlein can look forward to plenty of meets offering the possibility of improvement in the years to come, 17 year old GymZone veteran Brooklyn
Lavallee enters the 2017-2018 season knowing it’s likely her last in the realm of women’s artistic gymnastics.
“I’m going to coach gymnastics, and I might do tumbling,” noted the grade 12 Confederation Secondary student with an eye on the Concurrent
Education program at Laurentian University for next year.
“I’m not really thinking that it’s my last year yet, because I still have a whole bunch of competitions,” she said. Like Eberlein, she would leave the
Tour Selection meet with plenty of positives on which she could draw. “On the beam, I barely wobbled,” she said. “It was one of the best routines I’ve had
in my life. I wasn’t nervous at all.”
And though she understands all too well that there might not be any long-term gains from the progress that she shows this year, Lavallee is not about to
ease up in terms of breaking new ground with her abilities as a gymnast.
“I still need to work on bars,” she conceded. “I’m going to put in a new skill soon, get my giant for hopefully first or second qualifier. I think bars
is the hardest event because it’s not natural. You’re not on your feet, it’s all with your hands. And I’m not a natural circler, so it’s really hard for
Both Eberlein and Lavallee are expected to be joined by a larger group of their teammates as the Sudbury Laurels begin the process of attending the
qualifiers that are hosted right across the province.