Eagle Olivia Goree leads Issaquah to win at gymnastics tri-meet

January 19, 2009

By Ryan Piersol

Olivia Goree, of Issaquah, works on her uneven bar routine for a 8.8 score and a win on the apparatus Jan. 15. By Greg Farrar

Olivia Goree, of Issaquah, works on her uneven bar routine for a 8.8 score and a win on the apparatus Jan. 15. By Greg Farrar

Thanks to a jumbled season, gymnastics coaches in the KingCo Crest League may have still been wondering exactly what to expect of Issaquah High School.

On Jan. 15, they received their answer.

Led by a phenomenal night from Olivia Goree, the Eagles toppled league foes Newport and Mount Si at a meet in Newport.
Issaquah won with 171.75 points, followed by Newport’s 167.5 and Mount Si’s 159.5.

The win was proof that the Eagles, who missed three weeks of competition due to weather complications at one point this season, may have a stranglehold on their division.

“Newport is our biggest rivalry, so it’s good to see us go out and perform well,” Issaquah head coach Ryan Fleisher said. “We’ve had a strange season, but the girls are doing great.”

Goree won both the uneven bars and the balance beam en route to taking first place in the all-around competition with a score of 35.85. She won the bars routine with a score of 8.8 and the balance beam with a 9.45.

“She’s been consistent all season,” Fleisher said. “She’s been great and has been a lot of fun to watch.”

While Goree was the leader, she certainly wasn’t the only athlete to score points for Issaquah.

Risa Fukuda had an impressive night, taking fifth place in the all-around standings with 35.25 points. She didn’t win any events, but was a model of consistency, placing in the top five in all four categories. Fukuda was second in the vault and the floor, while taking fifth in both the uneven bars and the balance beam.

Issaquah’s Kelly Richards was seventh in the all-around, while teammate Ashley Lester was eighth and Kelsey Neal 10th. Lester was runner-up to Goree in the balance beam. Issaquah also picked up a top-five finish from Taryn Chin in the vault.

The Eagles were especially strong on the balance beam. They not only had the top two scores, but three of the top five scores.

“We tried some new things out there. We added some things on the bars and upped our start value. I think it’s going to give them confidence in their routines,” Fleisher said. “We’ve been doing well on the beam and on the floor. We’re not quite as strong at the other two events, but that kind of makes us fit into the league.

“We’re coming around and I’m happy with where we’re at.”

Reach reporter Ryan Piersol at rpiersol@isspress.com or 392-6434, ext. 246. Comment on this story at www.issaquahpress.com.

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