Roy C. Ketcham High School senior Alexis Mena picked a great day for a stellar performance.
On Wednesday, coach Stephanie Sambuco’s 29th birthday, Mena won the all-around and three individual events, including a career-best 9.75 on the balance beam, as the Wappingers gymnastics team defeated Carmel 165.1-145.2 and bested Ossining 165.1-131.8. The meet was held at Dutchess County Gymnastics.
“I felt really good because my warmup wasn’t that great,” Mena said of her beam performance. “I stuck things that I didn’t think were going to stick.”
Mena scored a 36.95 out of a possible 40.0 in the all-around. She placed first in the vault with a 9.0 and the uneven bars with a 9.1. Mena scored a 9.1 on the floor exercise, which was won by a pair of teammates, John Jay sophomore Hailey Conston and seventh-grader Olivia Frederick. Just before the Van Wyck Junior High student took the floor, Mena gave her a little advice.
“I still get nervous, but I don’t make as big of a deal,” Mena said. “(Olivia) was on the floor and she said, ‘Can you take my nervousness?’ I said, ‘OK, I’ll take your nervousness and I’ll give you mine.’ I was taking her butterflies. I guess it worked.”
Sambuco was pleased with the performance of her team, which had the top three finishers in the all-around: Mena, Frederick (32.5) and Conston (32.0). John Jay sophomore Megan Kohl scored a 31.45 in the all-around, putting her just behind Carmel’s Brittani Muccio.
“The depth of our team really shined in our performance,” Sambuco said. “It’s great steps toward the end of our season with divisionals and sectionals. It is very nice to have the luxury to pick and choose the lineup. They have a lot of talent. When they’re hitting their routines, they’re definitely on top.”