Clayton is starting to take on the look of a Greater Neuse River Conference gymnastics dynasty with its third straight league team title.
But this year the Comets took home the crown with a little added a style. A year ago they relied on depth to win without claiming the individual all-around champion.
This time Clayton won with star power and depth. The Comets swept the team championship with 110.95 points and the individual all-around title with 37.05 from sophomore Jessica Joslyn in competition Friday night at the Performance Sports Center.
“It’s great to win,” Joslyn said. “It’s something that’s never happened to me before. I wasn’t expecting it. When I compete I tell myself to expect the unexpected. I guess this time I was right.”
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Clayton swept the top three spots. Madyson Scott and Kaitlyn Cron tied for second at 36.8.
“We’ve got a great team,” Clayton coach Nick Brancheau said. “I think the girls like each other and have a lot of fun competing together. The future looks bright at Clayton.”
Joslyn jumped from a 10th-place finish as a freshman to leading the Comets a year later. She scored 9.3 in the vault, 9.15 in the bars, 9.45 in the beam and 9.15 in the floor exercise. Her beam score was the highest of the Greater Neuse meet.
“I thought I could have done better with floor and bar, but on beam I did exactly what hopping to do,” she said. “I stuck everything I needed to do and didn’t fall.”
Joslyn credited her year-round dedication to the sport competing in club gymnastics for improvement in the past year.
“I have the motivation and drive to do better,” she explained. “It helps to compete in club gymnastics. I’m a lot stronger in with my arms on my techniques.”
But she also likes the balance between club and high school gymnastics.
“I like my high school teammates helping me out,” she said. “High school gymnastics is fun. We’re proud to stick together as a team and win another title. We have a lot of good team spirit.”
Scott and Cron also recorded the high score for the conference in an event. Scott scored a 9.6 in the bars and Cron a 9.5 in the floor exercise.
In the team scores, Rolesville was second at 96.75. Lauren Pernell led Rolesville with an all-around score of 32.4 that was good for sixth place. She also recorded the high score of the Greater Neuse meet in the vault with a 9.5.
Harnett Central’s Amelie Bryant was fourth in the all-around at 36.2 and Garner’s Lauren Rogers fifth at 33.6.
Bryant’s score led Harnett Central to third in the team standings despite a limited roster. Her top event score was a third in the bars with a 9.25.