Mt. Hope gymnastics team gains ground on the floor, beam


The Huskies had their first home meet of the season on Jan. 12, splitting the wins with West Warwick, Toll Gate and Warwick Vets at Strive Gymnastics and Fitness in Somerset.Mt. Hope’s final score of 109 points was enough to narrowly beat out Toll Gate’s score of 108.45, but the Huskies fell short of West Warwick with 122.45, and Warwick Veterans’ 122.40 points scored.

Still, the Huskies were happy for the win.

“This was our freshman Mikayla Dupuis’ first meet competing all around. (She) was an essential piece of our victory,” said coach Kendal Ventura. “Bars and floor are Mt. Hope’s strong points, and we’ve been very successful on those events.”

The win was a moral boost for the team, after losing a solo meet against Exeter/West Greenwich on Jan. 6. At that meet, the Huskies could only put up 11.9 points to their opponent’s 124.95. But even after a home win, Ms. Ventura said that there is room for improvement.

“They did complete this meet with less falls on beam, but still find the uneven parallel bars a challenge,” she said.

The team’s work paid off on Jan. 16 when the Huskies visited North Smithfied High School. Fearing the worst going into the meet, with one of the team’s top point getters, Taylor Sousa, out due to illness. The Huskies’ teamwork prevailed, pulling off a 108.15 – 99.23 win against North Smithfield.

“Mikayla successfully completed all four events and greatly contributed to the team score. Our number two on the team, Jordan Masaitis, was a crucial piece to Mt. Hope’s win this meet,” Ms. Ventura said.

As for other individual performance, Ms. Ventura said that Corey Gendreau’s skills are continuing to improve since last year.

“He has greatly improved and almost sealed a spot in the state competition at the end of the season,” she said.

The Mt. Hope gymnastics team record stands at 2-3 so far this season, with the next chance to improve their Division 2 standings coming on Jan. 26 when they face Portsmouth, West Warwick and North Smithfield high schools at a tri-meet at the Newport YMCA. The meet is scheduled to begin at 3:30 p.m.


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A lifelong Portsmouth resident, Jim graduated from Portsmouth High School in 1982 and earned a journalism degree from the University of Rhode Island in 1986. He's worked two different stints at East Bay Newspapers, for a total of 18 years with the company so far. When not running all over town bringing you the news from Portsmouth, Jim listens to lots and lots and lots of music, watches obscure silent films from the '20s and usually has three books going at once. He also loves to cook crazy New Orleans dishes for his wife of 25 years, Michelle, and their two sons, Jake and Max.