Towson gymnastics has a memorable season
BALTIMORE -- Women's college gymnastics has been attracting a large amount of attention over the past few years, and the program at Towson University is a prime example of its growing popularity.
The Tigers competed in front of school-record crowds this season.
WJZ had an opportunity to spend a practice session with the Tigers to get some insight into the dynamic team.
The team's practice area is tucked inside the Towson Center. That's where the Tigers work out—amid a sea of constant activity.
The moves and routines of team members are perfected under the watchful eye of head coach Jay Ramirez and his staff.
As they practice, anyone around can hear the constant encouragement and motivation the team members give to each other.
"You are surrounded by a bunch of people who are doing the same things as you," Towson gymnast Isabella Minervini said. "They all want you to do your best and you all want them to do their best, and it's a great way to keep yourself motivated, to keeping going in the sport."
For the gymnasts, the support of teammates is something new even though they have been participating in the sport ever since they were toddlers.
"In club gymnastics, it was more individual, everyone more focused on themselves, but when you come to college it's more of a team aspect," Towson gymnast Lauren Keener said. "So, I think knowing you have your teammates on your side supporting you at all times, it's way different, and the energy is so much better."
This weekend, Towson is competing in the NCAA regionals in Pittsburgh.
They come off a league title for the first time in school history, and the comradery associated with the team feat shows.
"Everyone, no matter if you are doing the routine or not, like, influences how somebody does by the support they give on the sideline," Towson gymnast Camille Vitoff said.
All that teamwork has led to some winning scores during meets, and it's having an impact in the classroom, too.
According to the school, this close-knit squad has a cumulative GPA of 3.6.
"The amount of dedication that all of these athletes have given to the sport—all the way from five years old up till now—and they are also going to school 15 hours a week, and then they have studying on top of that, and then some of them have jobs."
Towson lost last night to Penn State in the team competition in Pittsburgh, but three gymnasts are still competing in their individual events.
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