With her family moving from one Washington to another, young Alex Schmadeke made a lasting final impression on the state youth gymnastics scene.
Schmadeke, a ninth-grader at Sequim High School, earned a Level 7 state title at the 2019 Washington Optional State Championships in Auburn on March 25, capping a season that saw Schmadeke take first place in her division four times and six total top-three finishes in seven meets.
Schmadeke, who competes with Twisters Gymnastics teammates in Port Hadlock, is set to move with her family to Washington, D.C.
The Sequim youth said she isn’t sure when her family is planning on moving.
“I like to not talk about it cause it makes me sad. I really do not (want to) leave — I love it here so much!” Schmadeke said in an email.
“My team is the best and I would never in a million years want to leave them or trade them for the world,” she said.
“This year, my teammates’ bond got really strong. We spent time together a lot over the summer and we all just continued to naturally click with each other. My teammates are like my second family! I love them to pieces. Plus, I really got to calm down and get to know myself as an athlete better and what works for me.”
After placing fourth in the Senior B division at last year’s state meet, Schmadeke was even better at the state finals this winter in the Senior C division, taking first in the bars with a personal best 9.600 mark and first on the beam (9.375 points). She placed second on the vault (9.075 points) and on the floor (9.550) for title-clinching all-around score of 37.600, also a personal Level 7 best.
Schmadeke also took Senior B division firsts at the NAWGJWA Holiday Critique in Auburn on Dec. 8, the Battle in Bellevue on Jan. 20 and the Great West Gymfest in Coeur d’ Alene, Idaho, on Feb. 21.
She took first in her division on the balance beam in her most recent five meets.
“Beam has definitely grown on me,” Schmadeke said. “(The event) has definitely been my favorite event this season, tied with floor. Beam is super graceful and done well is so pretty to watch. Beam … makes me concentrate a lot and it gets me down to the bone in sense of how I ‘portray myself’ on the apparatus. I really like beam, and even though skills can be harder to learn, when you get them you feel really good.”
Schmadeke said she plans on pursuing the sport in her later high school years.
“I think it would be awesome to be able to compete in college gymnastics,” she said. “When I see teams on the internet and TV it looks a lot of fun, and I definitely want to do it in college.”