Gymnastics: Savas, Brandt and Chan compete at YMCA national championships

Wilton gymnasts Elena Savas, a rising seventh grader at Middlebrook School, and rising Wilton High seniors Christina Brandt and Alissa Chan, recently completed a successful competition season at the 2013 National YMCA Gymnastics Championships in Savannah, Ga., from June 25-29.

With more than 2,000 gymnasts competing from states around the nation at this annual qualifying event, the Wilton girls had solid performances in their respective levels and age groups.

All three girls are trained by Vladimir and Valentina Kovalenko and Yury Vasilev of the Darien YMCA Gymnastics Center.

Competing in Level 6, Savas won second place on the floor and bars, and sixth place on vault, and finished third in the all-around in the senior age group in her session.

Brandt, one of 240 Level 8 competitors, won first place on the vault and third place on the floor, ranking her eighth in the all-around in the senior age group in her division. Brandt’s two top scores helped the Darien Y Level 8 team achieve seventh place.

At Level 9, Chan had a successful showing in her first year competing in the championship division, the highlight in the YMCA Nationals which is made up of the nation’s top qualifying Level 9 and Level 10 YMCA gymnasts. This year, 66 qualified gymnasts competed at the championship level.

Chan ranked 11th on floor in the preliminary round and 13th on beam in the semifinal round in the junior division. Chan is one of four Level 9 gymnasts who helped the Darien Y team take fifth place in the championship level this year.

Earlier this season, the gymnasts had many successes at the state and regional level.

In Level 6, Savas’s highlights included first place on bars and second place on floor at the Northeast Regional YMCA Championship in May. She had a stellar performance at the CT State YMCA Championship in March, placing first on bars, beam and floor and winning the all-around championship. Savas also placed first on floor and fourth in the all-around at the USAG Level 6 state meet in May.

In Level 8, Brandt was first on vault, second on floor and fifth in the all-around at the Northeast Regional YMCA Championship. She also placed first on vault, fifth on floor and was tied for fifth in the all-around at the CT State YMCA Championship.

Competing in the USAG Level 8 State meet in March, Brandt placed ninth on vault and floor.

Chan had a solid performance since moving up to Level 9 this year. Highlights of her season included first place on floor and second place in the all-around at the FUNomental YMCA meet in January, and third place on floor and fourth place in the all-around in the Next Dimension meet in February. Chan also qualified for the USAG Level 9 state meet in March.