Gymnastics: Southridge's Bjorge wins two state titles

February 22, 2014 

Gymnastics has always been fun for Southridge junior Kiya Bjorge.

So much in fact that less than five hours after winning individual state titles in bars and floor exercise at Saturday’s Class 1A/2A/3A gymnastics championships at the Tacoma Dome, Bjorge was off to compete in a Level 10 club meet in Seattle.

Bjorge admitted to being a little sore from a nagging foot injury that forced her to miss the 2012 high school season, and a little tired from two big days of gymnastics.

But it didn’t stop her from taking the floor again in the evening.

“I left it up to her (to compete). She knows her body better than anybody,” said Heather Bjorge, her mother and Southridge coach.

Even after finishing second in Friday’s All-Around competition to Kamiakin junior Alexis Lawrence, Bjorge couldn’t hold back the joy she felt inside.

“I was happy yesterday, and I’m pretty happy right now. I had fun just like yesterday,” Bjorge said. “The bars went really well, and I did the best possible floor routine I could. I changed some of my tumbling passes, and I added a kip-hop on bars.”

Bjorge scored a 9.575 points on bars, edging Lawrence by 75-hundredths of a point to take the title. The floor exercise was even closer, as Bjorge’s score of 9.625 topped Lawrence by just 25 hundredths of a point.

“I think it was her attitude. She came in and said, ‘Let’s have some fun,’ ” her mom said. “She had really clean routines, and she pulled them off.”

Bjorge also finished second to Lawrence in vault and second to Nykaela Dodson of Sammamish in the beam.

Meanwhile, Lawrence — with an All-Around title and team championship already in hand — continued her impressive weekend with an individual title in the vault. The Kamiakin junior scored 9.725 to edge Bjorge by just 25 hundredths of a point.

Lawrence also posted second-place finishes in the floor (9.6) and bars (9.5), and picked up a third place in beam (9.325).

“I was really proud of my vault,” she said. “Even though I had a lower score in beam, I think the judging was a little tougher.”

Lawrence, a Level 10 gymnast, was undecided after Friday’s competition whether she would return to high school gymnastics next season. After Saturday’s event, however, she changed her tune a bit.

“I think I will (come back). Today was less nerve-wracking,” she said. “I had a really good time.”

Kamiakin, which won its first state title since 2011, made another strong showing as Lawrence and seniors Danielle Brandon (seventh in vault with a 9.55, fourth in floor with a 9.5) and Kelsey Jaquish (fifth in beam with a 9.075, tied for fourth in vault) combined for eight top-eight finishes. Brandon and Jaquish both capped brilliant careers that set a strong tone for the Braves’ program.

Southridge’s Alaine Pier (third in bars at 9.4) and Hanford’s Kayla Lasater (eighth in bars at 8.975), each earned a podium finish to help boost the growing reputation of eastern Washington gymnasts.

“We represented ourselves very well,” Heather Bjorge said. “We’ve got some strong programs, and I think we have some great coaches that the girls connect with.”

Their example, along with Bjorge’s effort


Tacoma Dome

Class 4A

Bars: 1, Marissa Savage, Woodinville, 9.550; 2-T, Jenna Schlosser, Mead, and Kate Jabobsen, Puyallup, 9.525.

Beam: 1, Candace Ho, Newport, 9.450; 2, Schlosser 9.350; Savage 9.225.

Floor: 1, Schlosser 9.500; 2, Ho 9.400; 3-T, Savage and Jabobsen 9.375.

Vault: 1, Jenna Hayes, Eastlake, 9.725; 2, Savage 9.625; 3-T, Schlosser and Ava Welch, Mt. Rainier, 9.600.

Class 3A/2A/1A

Bars: 1, Kiya Bjorge, Southridge, 9.575; 2, Alexis Lawrence, Kamiakin, 9.500; 3, Alaina Pier, Southridge, 9.400; 8, Kayla Lasater, Hanford, 8.975; 12, Ellie Winstead, Kamiakin, 8.275; 14, Saige Polanik, Kamiakin, 8.125; 15-T, Kelsey Jaquish, Kamiakin, 8.050.

Beam: 1, Nykaela Dodson, Sammamish, 9.425; 2, Bjorge 9.350; 3, Lawrence 9.325; 5, Jaquish 9.075; 14, Danielle Brandon, Kamiakin, 8.075.

Floor: 1, Bjorge 9.625; 2-T, Lawrence 9.600; 4, Brandon 9.500; 13-T, Jaquish and Polanik 9.300; 16, Pier 8.900.

Vault: 1, Lawrence 9.725; 2, Bjorge 9.700; 3, Olivia Bannerot, Enumclaw, 9.650; 4-T, Jaquish 9.575; 7T-Brandon 9.550; 11, Polanik 9.250.


Class 3A

Team scores—1. Kamiakin, 181.700; 2. Enumclaw, 178.425; 3. Mount Si, 168.600; 4. Decatur, 164.000; 5. Columbia RIver, 159.500; 6. Lake Washington, 157.550; 7. Holy Names, 157.375; 8. North Kitsap, 154.825.

Individual results (top 3 and locals)

All-around—1. Alexis Lawrence, Kamiakin, 38.3 2. Kiya Bjorge, Southridge, 38.050; 3. Oliva Bannerot, Enumclaw, 37.950; 5. Danielle Brandon, Kamiakin, 36.775; 7. Kelsey Jaquish, Kamiakin, 36.400; 15. Ellie Winstead, Kamiakin, 35.300; 16. Alaina Pier, Southridge, 35.250; 20. Saige Polanik, Kamiakin, 34.850; 21. Kayla Lasater, Hanford, 34.675; 40. Christy Craigo, Kamiakin, 32.975. Vault—1. Lawrence, Kamiakin, 9.675; 2. Bannerot, Enumclaw, 9.55; 3. Bjorge, Southridge, 9.525; 7. Brandon, Kamiakin, 9.25; 9. Jaquish, Kamiakin, 9.175; 15. Polanik, Kamiakin, 8.875; 27. Winstead, Kamiakin, 8.5; 43. Craigo, Kamiakin, 8.25; t62. Lasater, Hanford, 8.05; t67. Pier, Southridge, 8.0. Bars—1. Lawrence, Kamiakin, 9.5; 2. Bjorge, Southridge, 9.45; 3. Dodson, Sammamish, 9.35; 5. Pier, Southridge, 9.225; 7. Polanik, Kamiakin, 8.975; 8. Jaquish, Kamiakin, 8.925; 9. Lasater, Hanford, 8.9; 12. Winstead, Kamiakin, 8.65; 19. Brandon, Kamiakin, 8.45; 23. Craigo, Kamiakin, 8.3. Beam—1. Brandon, Kamiakin, 9.575; 2. Bjorge, Southridge, 9.525; 3. Emily Berte, Enumclaw, 9.45; 4. Lawrence, Kamiakin, 9.4; t15. Jaquish, Kamiakin, 8.9; t17. Winstead, Kamiakin, 8.85; 30. Pier, Southridge, 8.6; 33. Lasater, Hanford, 8.525; t57. Craigo, Kamiakin, 7.625; t60. Polanik, Kamiakin, 7.55. Floor—1. Lawrence, Kamiakin, 9.725; 2. Bannerot, Enumclaw, 9.675; 3. Dodson, Sammamish, 9.6; and Jen Rogers, Mount Si, 9.6; 5. Bjorge, Southridge, 9.55; 6. Brandon, Kamiakin, 9.5; t8. Polanik, Kamiakin, 9.45; t11. Pier, Southridge, 9.425; t15. Jaquish, Kamiakin, 9.4; t19. Winstead, Kamiakin, 9.3; 31. Lasater, Hanford, 9.2.

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