The Moore League Gymnastics Preview Meet featuring all seven teams at Lakewood High last week proved what we already know: Millikan is at the top of the podium. The Rams compiled the most points in all four events, and finished first by 29 points.
Last year, Millikan won its seventh league team championship in the last eight years as the Rams swept the podium at the league finals. Julia Fielder won the all-around with 37.000 points by placing first in the balance beam and the floor exercise, while finishing second in the vault and uneven bars. The senior won all four events and finished first at the league preview last week. She was one four Rams in the top five.
“I think it comes from just trying to have a great attitude and working hard,” Fielder said last year of winning the all-around. “I get energy from watching my teammates.”
Millikan 10-year coach Ashleigh Ferguson said she talented newcomers have bolstered her ranks. Freshman Amanda Dover finished in second at the league preview, less than three points behind Fielder. Dover excels on the beam and bars, where she fell during the preview. Amanda Berman and Natalie Evora also finished in the top five.
Freshman Laura Faynor is joining the team after her club commitment finished, and Ferguson said having a longer preseason with more time before the preview event has helped her team to stay healthy.
“Some of there girls come from a crazy club experiences, that’s the way the sport is, and we just want to have some fun and it works.”
The Moore League is made up of Millikan, Wilson, Lakewood, St. Joseph’s, Valley Christian, Canyon and Burroughs because not all leagues and CIF sections have gymnastics. The Rams swept St. Joseph’s on Thursday, and host Burroughs on Friday after the Burros travel more than three hours from Ridgecrest to compete in Long Beach.
“There’s no other option,” Burroughs second-year coach Cheryl Roquemore said. “These girls want to keep this program alive because they want an opportunity to compete for their school.”
Burroughs was second place behind Millikan at the preview meet. Renee Bradford finished ninth individually, Saralynn McEntee was sixth and Izzy Roquemore was fourth thanks to third place finishes on the vault and floor.
“I’ve coached most of these girls in club season, and they’re always excited to compete no matter how long the drive is,” said Roquemore, who has six years of coaching experience with the USAG.
St. Joseph (April 13) and Wilson (April 27) will both travel to compete against Burroughs this season at the Ridgecrest Gymnastics Academy.
The Moore League Finals will be hosted at Lakewood on May 4.