Morgan County Correspondent

Strong at state

Grubb finishes 15th at state gymnastics competition

Martinsville senior Gabby Grubb gets ready for her last event as a high school senior with her family and friends behind her in the stands during Saturday’s IHSAA State Finals competition at Ball State University. (Melissa Dillon photo / MCC)

MUNCIE — Martinsville senior Gabby Grubb achieved her goal of going to state for gymnastics for the fourth straight year and competing in all four events. Grubb had very strong meets at sectionals and regionals to get her a ticket to the dance at Ball State University last Saturday. 

At school, Grubb walked the hallways last week and enjoyed a pep rally in the lunch room for the “Walk of Champions” to wish her luck, and to congratulate the MHS Dance Team for their state wins. Grubb also flooded local social media pages and felt like a celebrity all week.

Grubb had a large cheering section of family and friends in the stands Saturday to watch her do her thing and cheer her on.

“They mean a lot to me. This community and my family support has been amazing,” Grubb said.

The day started off with opening ceremonies before Grubb had a long wait before her floor routine. She was energetic and landed her runs with ease. She received an 8.95 that put her tied for 25th.

“I started off really good,” Grubb said. “I felt like I kind of got rigged on floor a little bit. I thought I deserved way better than that. I finished strong on beam, so that’s all that matters.”

About an hour later, Grubb was ready for the vault, which is generally her highest scoring event. Grubb was grouped with other individuals who all had their own individual setup on the vault. In between each warmup pass, all four coaches worked like clockwork and quickly to reset each individual setup. 

After a few runs, Grubb was ready to compete. She landed it with a slight step at the end. Her second pass, she came up a little short and seemed to be in pain on her landing. She quickly got up and regrouped. She scored a 9.25 that placed her in 18th place.

Next up was the uneven bars. Grubb performed a simple and clean routine that earned her an 8.6 for 27th place.

“For them, it could be a mental struggle,” assistant coach Lina Soto said. “Gabby has learned that if you can keep your head up and push through that, you can surprise yourself with how the meet will turn out.” 

The balance beam was her last event, and Grubb found herself last in the rotation of the day. With all eyes on her, love from her fan group and a quick hug from her coaches, Grubb struggled to not tear up before her routine. 

She performed flawlessly and scored a 9.15 for 13th.

“I’m so proud of her,” Soto said. “I’ve been coaching her since her freshman year, and the growth that she’s shown from then has been so amazing. I haven’t been coaching high school gymnastics for that long, but the competition here is really hard. It takes a lot of time, work and effort to get here.”

Grubb finished 15th with her all-around score of 35.95.

“She did really good today,” coach Larry Sachs said. “The scores I felt should’ve been a little higher. She stuck everything. It was a good ending.”

The beautiful ending to the day was not only Grubb’s ending for high school gymnastics, but an end of an era for Sachs.

“That’s it for me,” he said. “She’s moving on, and I’m retiring. I’ve been in it a long time. I decided to move on.”

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