Independent Student Newspaper of UW Oshkosh Campuses

The Advance-Titan

Independent Student Newspaper of UW Oshkosh Campuses

The Advance-Titan

Independent Student Newspaper of UW Oshkosh Campuses

The Advance-Titan

Gymnasts focus on family during 2015 season

The 2015 UW Oshkosh gymnastics team says it prides itself on hard work, goal setting, dedication and having fun in the process.

“What I enjoyed this year was that we had a goal each week,” sophomore Kylie Fischer said. “Coach would come in at the beginning of each week and read us a quote she had picked out.”

One particular quote coach Lauren Kranitz had picked was one about “ohana,” which means family.

“Our goal was to be a family because no matter what happens, we always have each other, and we always have to back each other up,” Fischer said.

The idea of a family was adopted and expressed by all of the members, including junior Barbara Bass.

“We embody the idea of a family; a family that fights for what we want and for each other,” Bass said.

“When you come to practice and go to competitions, always remember to have that fire, or drive to do better,” Fischer said.

In collegiate sports, each team, no matter the sport, is unique and special in its own way, Fischer said. This year’s gymnastics team is no exception.

“What I think was so special about our team this year was that we just got along so well, and we enjoy hanging out and having each other around,” Fischer said. “It is so nice to have a team that you could count on for support inside the gym as well as outside.”

The junior squad member referred to her team as “gladiators in leotards.”

“Because of this, we were able to break two school records and go 5-2 in the season,” Bass said.

Like some of her fellow gymnasts, Bass discovered her passion and inspiration for gymnastics at a young age.

“From a young age, I loved watching the Olympics on TV—gymnastics being one of my favorites,” Bass said.

Bass said the sport is difficult but rewarding.

“When I had been in the sport several years, I learned to love overcoming adversity; all of the pain is worth it.,” Bass said. “Hard work, dedication and persistence became in me as a youth.”

The atmosphere that surrounds the UWO gymnastics team is what attracts gymnasts like Bass.

“Being a gymnast at UWO is an experience like no other,” Bass said. “I wouldn’t trade it for the world. Not only do we love each other like sisters, but we also have made friends on the other teams.”

This is squad was lead by All-American junior Krystal Walker. Despite all of her own honors and personal accomplishments, Walker consistently stressed having fun and maintaining a family-like bond.

Coming off of a successful sophomore season, Walker made it a priority to settle down and control the pressure.

“Last year I felt like I had to do the same thing as my freshman year, but now I just try to not even think about things like that and just go out there and do what I know how to do and have fun while doing it,” Walker said.

Walker has been an important piece to the program and has performed at a high level on a consistent basis.

Even though Walker has earned multiple Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference honors, as well as other achievements, she is quick to give her fellow gymnasts and coaches the credit.

“My coaches and teammates get the credit, hands down,” Walker said. “I would not be where I am today without them.”

The Titans achieved a final record of five wins and two losses respectively for the season.

The squad took advantage of some home play by winning all three of their meets at the Kolf Sports Center.

The Titans didn’t quite finish the way they had hoped by taking seventh place at the WIAC Championship, but they are sending Krystal Walker to represent them in the National Collegiate Gymnastics Association championship as an individual qualifier in the balance beam, floor exercise and all-around competition in La Crosse on Friday, March 27.

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