Westerville News & Public Opinion


Warhawks feature 'ton of ability'


The first season for the Westerville Central High School gymnastics team concluded with freshman Taylor Stills representing the program on floor exercise in the individual state meet March 1 at Hilliard Bradley.

Stills was 21st (8.875) of 36 gymnasts behind champion Monica Batton (9.55) of Macedonia Nordonia

The top six earned all-state honors, with Upper Arlington's Rebecca Jaskot finishing sixth (9.325).

"I thought it was a great experience," Stills said. "Being a freshman and seeing it, it was just a nice thing to calm me down for next year for what's going to happen. It was a good score for my first year. I was really nervous."

Coach Shea Stammen, who previously was an assistant at Worthington Kilbourne and has guided gymnasts at state, said it was a good experience for Stills.

"It was really a great accomplishment to make it to the state meet as a freshman," Stammen said. "She hit her routine. She had a few mislandings. She didn't fall or anything, but she just had some steps on her landings that made her score a little bit on the lower side for her. But just being there and landing all the tumbling passes in her first time at state was a great accomplishment."

Central finished 10th (129.375) in the 26-team district meet Feb. 22 at Kilbourne behind state-qualifiers Dublin Coffman (143.85), Kilbourne (141.025) and UA (137.7).

Stills was second on floor (9.225) behind Coffman's Alexis Markulis (9.3) as the top eight in each event, including the all-around, advanced to state.

Sophomore Lyndsey Dillabaugh had the Warhawks' top all-around score (33.6) at district, placing 27th of 103 gymnasts.

"The team kept improving each meet," Stammen said. "The team has a ton of ability."

The Warhawks went 6-1 in OCC-Capital Division duals and totaled 26 points in the overall league standings to finish third behind Hilliard Bradley (30, 6-1) and Dublin Jerome (28, 6-1) and ahead of Olentangy Orange (20, 4-3), Big Walnut (16, 3-4) Central Crossing (10, 2-5), Marysville (10, 1-6) and Franklin Heights (4, 0-7).

Dillabaugh was named all-league in all-around (34.3), on balance beam (8.9) and on vault (8.6), while Stills was all-league on floor (9.05).

Natalie Masi was the team's only senior.

"She's going to be missed greatly," Stammen said. "She really came on the last meets and put up some big scores for us on the beam when we really needed it."

Other gymnasts were junior Jeni Schorling, sophomore Ali Daugherty and freshman Ariel Gowdy.

"It was a great year for our first year," Stills said. "We really put our name out there."