Local Gymnasts Travel to Atlanta for Nationals


MCHS freshman, Mia Cantu, poses with many of the gymnastics medals she has won.

Emily Turner, Staff Reporter

Three gymnasts from Madison Gymnastics World will be competing in the level 9 eastern championships in Atlanta, Georgia, on Saturday, May 8th. The competing gymnasts are Alexa Yeomans, Esphr Koren, and Mia Cantu. The girls placed in the top seven of their age group in the Region 5 regional competition and secured a place on the region 5 dream team.

Mia Cantu is a 14-year-old level 9 gymnast and a freshman at Madison Consolidated High School. She spends most of her time at Madison Gymnastics World training and learning things like dedication, teamwork, and sportsmanship. Mia started competing in gymnastics when she was four years old and has always had a passion for doing flips and showing off all the tricks she has learned. Cantu placed second on the vault at the Region 5 championships, scoring a 9.8 with a 10.0 starting value, and has been nicknamed the “vault monster.” She is a powerful and strong gymnast. When she is on vault, her power shines. Cantu loves doing all the events in gymnastics; however, she says beam is the most difficult for her. 

Cantu shows off the spoils of her hard work.

“I give much credit to my coach Stephine for leading me in the right direction with my gymnastics and my mom pushing me to be my best,” Cantu said.

 Cantu is pleased with how much she has grown over the past couple of years and hopes to finish her season with some personal bests at the Eastern Championships. 

Cantu continued, “I am super excited to train with the region 5 dream team and wear the new leotards and warm-ups they gave us.” 

This will be Cantu’s first time competing for the region 5 dream team.

Esphyr Koren is a 12-year-old on the level 9 team. Koren attends school at Madison Junior High School as a sixth-grader. She placed seventh at the regional competition and got a spot on the region 5 dream team. Koren has a strong beam routine and has put many new skills in her routines this competition season. This is her first year being a level 9, and she has accomplished many of her goals for this season. Koren pushes herself in practice every day and sets goals and high standards for herself. This will be her first national competition that she will be a competitor in.

MCHS sixth-grader, Esphyr Koren at the gymnastics Level 9 Eastern Championships

Koren said, “I am excited to compete at nationals and a little nervous, but I love doing beam and feel very confident.”

She started doing gymnastics when she was two and started competing when she was four in level two.

Alexa Yeomans is the third gymnast on the Madison Gymnastics World level 9 team. Yeomans is 14 years old and attends school at South Ripley Jr. High as an eighth-grader. She started doing gymnastics when she was five years old.

 Yeomans stated, “ I think I’ve come a long way in gymnastics, and my confidence has built up over this season. I feel really excited about nationals and think getting to spend time with my teammates will be fun.” 

She is an excellent bar worker and has many difficult skills on the bars. Yeomans hopes to have a good meet at her first national competition and have fun.

Madison Gymnastics World level 9 team traveled to Atlanta, Georgia, on Wednesday.