Gannon splits weekend tri-meet


The road for Chevonne White in her inaugural season as Gannon University’s acrobatics and tumbling coach has resembled the streets of downtown Erie — filled with potholes.

Despite the hardships, White has been able to put together a talented young team that continues to work tirelessly toward its goals.

White said that she was excited when she found out that she would be taking over the team following the departure of former head coach Chelsea Shaw, who accepted the head coaching job at her alma mater — the University of Oregon acrobatics and tumbling team.

“It was a welcomed next chapter,” White said with a smile.

The Knights had only four returning starters from the 2014 season, but were able to fill a roster of 17 women for the 2015 campaign.

Sophomore base Angelina Grandinetti said that her coach was given a difficult task when she took over the team in August.

“I think she had a late start,” Grandinetti said. “A lot of the time, you’re recruiting the year before. She had to pull us together as a team.”

White said that when the coaching shift took place that some girls decided to look at alternate opportunities before she was named the coach. Nevertheless, White was pleased with the talented crop of freshmen that joined the team.

“Everybody that came in brought good, positive attitudes,” she said.

Junior base Kayla Telego said that the freshman class, transfers and new additions to the team have been able to come together despite a tough offseason.

“It was a rocky start, but that’s what’s expected when you have a new coach and a team that is very young,” she said.

“We’ve been able to pull together and I think our team dynamic is strong. We’re like a family.”

White said that there have been many positive aspects of having a young team with the proper attitude to get better every day.

“They get to learn together,” White said. “They are a good support system for each other because it’s new to almost all of them.”

The Knights have opened the season with a 2-4 record against formidable opponents. Gannon split its tri-meet Saturday with a win over Concordia University and a loss to Alderson Broaddus University.

Grandinetti said that the season hasn’t started the way the team had hoped, but added that the Knights have improved during each of their meets. That has been evident in the team’s near 10-point overall score increase in its most recent tri-meet from its two-point loss to King University on March 10.

“There is a lot of talent on the team and I think we have come together a lot lately,” Grandinetti said. “We’ve been able to push through some hardships, some concussions, last-minute changes and teammates coming back from surgery.”

Telego said that she feels confident that the Knights will have a strong finish to their first season under White’s leadership.

“It’s fun to watch it all grow,” she said.


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