Alyssa Budd of Jackson Area Gymnastics performs during the Michigan High School Athletic Association state individual gymnastics meet at Lakeland High School Saturday.
JAG Goes Heavy Medal at Gymnastics Finals
By Jeff Steers
(March 11, 2023 10:20 PM) For the last dozen years, Alyssa Budd and Jenna Bradley have been as close as any two student/athletes can be.
Especially for two students who don’t go to the same school.
Saturday night they finished nearly right next to one another at the Michigan High School Athletic Association state individual gymnastics finals at Lakeland High School.
Bradley finished 10th in the all-around competition (36.05) and Budd placed sixth (36.825) in the Division 1 competition.
Both are seniors – Budd goes to Napoleon and Bradley to Lumen Christi – having met at JAG Coach Marcy Miller’s gymnastics gym.
“Jenna and I am the same (kind of) people … we can’t stop laughing once we start,” Budd said. “We have competed together for four years in high school and all of the years before that.
“I am kind of in shock right now … I just performed my last routine.”
Budd and Bradley led JAG to a second-place finish in the state in the team competition on Friday and led the medal haul during the individual competition Saturday.
The top 10 in each event in each division receive medals and all-state honors.
Budd finished 10th in the vault (9.325), eighth in the bars (8.925), just missed a medal on the beam with an 11th place finish (9.0) and tied for second on the floor exercise (9.575) in Division 1.
Bradley placed 13th in the vault (9.175), finished 12th in the bars (8.575), placed 14th on the beam (8.9), and medaled on the floor exercise with an eighth-place finish (9.4).
The duo combined for six medals on Saturday.
Lilly Heydenburg of Western was 21st in the vault (8.85) and 25th on the uneven bars (7.875). Teammate Taylor Panquin placed tied for 24th on the beam (8.3), 32nd on the floor exercise (8.325), and 23rd in the all-around (25.1) in Division 1.
In Division 2, Addi Richmond of JAG finished fourth in the bars (8.6) and Melody Placeway tied for ninth (8.425); Richmond won the floor exercise (9.525); and she placed fifth in the all-around (35.425).
Madison Rentfrow from Tec/Manch/Columbia Central placed tied for 21st on the Division 2 beam (8.525).
Division 1 at Calvin College: Jackson High School swimmer Blake Hetherington earned-all state honors by finishing 11th in the 50-yard freestyle (21.83 seconds) and 12th in the 100-yard freestyle (47.77 seconds); Steven DeVaughn also placed 14th in the 100-yard butterfly (54.06 seconds) to earn all-state honors; Jackson earned first-team all-state honors finishing eighth in the 200-yard freestyle relay (1:28.48) with Hetherington, DeVaughn, Will Snyder, and Logan McKinney; and finished seventh in the 400-meter freestyle relay (3:16.36) with the same team earning all-state honors.