Woodland freshmen representing Hawks in gymnastics
BEACON FALLS —Woodland’s newest team of two is literally excelling by leaps and bounds.
Freshman twin sisters Stephanie and Kristina Poynton have been leaping and bonding around the gym since they were 3 years old and have been competing in gymnastics at the club level for the past seven years.
Now, the twins are representing Woodland.
“I’ve been in the gym for about 10 years now and my sister and I challenge each other to do our best,” Kristina said. “We support one another and cheer each other on. I don’t think I will feel intimidated to compete at the high school level, in fact I’m looking forward to it.”
Woodland doesn’t have an official varsity gymnastics program, but the Poynton sisters are representing the Hawks on a team that has a couple of girls from Thomaston and Sacred Heart. The team is following the schedule of Pomperaug High School and is coached by Hal Rettstadt, owner of Kinetic Kids Gymnastics in Oxford and the Pomperaug head coach.
“The rules are a little different at the high school level from club competition,” Rettstadt said. “But Stephanie and Kristina are both more than ready to compete at the high school level.
“Stephanie is at a level eight and Kristina is at a level seven and the average for girls competing in high school is at a level seven. There are not a lot of girls who do both club competition and high school, but the ones who do excel at it.”
The coach was right on the mark as the Poynton sisters made an impression in their very first high school competition.
The Woodland duo didn’t land at the top of the leader board as far as team scores Dec. 22 at Pomperaug, but they did win first place in their events hands down.
Pomperaug won the competition with a team total of 127.40. In the individual competition, the Poynton sisters made their mark. Kristina finished in first place in the All-Around category with a score of 32.95. Stephanie took first in the beam with a score of 8.90 and the floor with a score of 8.70.
“I’m really excited to be representing Woodland,” Kristina said. “I don’t want to put any added pressure on myself with any unrealistic expectations. I just want to go out there and do the best I can just like I do at club competitions.”
Kristina has already shown that she has the skills to be successful finishing first in the vault, beam and floor in the 2014 Connecticut Nutmeg Games. This past July she finished fourth overall at the Nutmeg Games taking first in the vault and tying for first in the beam.
Stephanie has also excelled in club competition as the sisters both qualified for the State Games a few years ago held in Hershey, Pa. In the 2014 Nutmeg Games, she finished first in the floor and placed second in the bars and the vault.
“Some of my friends from school know that we are representing Woodland and they are very supportive,” Stephanie said. “My sister and I are always in a friendly kind of competition to see who can advance to the next skill level first.
“We are both looking forward to the competition at the high school level and to try and raise our USGA score to get to the next level. Of course representing Woodland is just an awesome experience.”
For any Woodland fans that want to come out and support the high-flying Hawks their next competition will be the Pomperaug Invitational Jan. 9 at 8 a.m. at Pomperaug High School.