On March 8, 2023

Rutland’s Cobra Gymnastics Teams compete, win against New England rivals

The Cobra Gymnastics Team of Rutland was on fire this past weekend in North Adams, Massachusetts, at the Hip Hop Classic. The Xcel Bronze, Silver and Gold teams all showed their strengths by capturing first place team wins over a large populated field of New England gymnasts.

Cobra is in its 11th year of hosting competitive gymnastics through the Xcel Program of USA Gymnastics under the coaching staff of Shelby Barsalou, Topsy King, Kymi Fahoury and Francky Joseph.

“The teams have shown growth and success this season as they also captured top honors at the Green Mountain Cup in February,” wrote Cobra Gymnastics & Dance owner Shelby Barsalou in a news release. “The girls demonstrated great focus and radiant energy in their passion for the sport of gymnastics.”

The Hip Hop Classic was the last traditional meet before the state championships in mid-March.

“At this point in the season, the girls truly understand the details and small nuances that competitive gymnastics demands. As they develop these awareness, they begin to support the parts of themselves that need nurturing, grace and inner strength. In the end, it’s a performance sport; self-confidence and positivity always prevail. Gymnastics truly provides life lessons and these girls are soaking them up!” Coach Barsalou continued.

Charli Fahoury, a 7-year-old from Wallingford, captured Cobra’s first perfect 10.0 on Bars in the Xcel Bronze Level.

“Fahoury began gymnastics at just 18 months old, and is now a blossoming second year Bronze at Cobra. She is a diligent and fun gymnast; often seen smiling around the gym and laughing with her teammates,” Barsalou noted.

Another outstanding performance came from Karena, a junior at Rutland High School. Kuehl has been on the Cobra team for 10 years and just completed the high school circuit where she competed as an independent for Rutland High School while traveling with the Burr & Burton Gymnastics team. She tallied one of her highest AA scores (37.3) for the overall win in the Diamond level and led her team to a second place finish.

“The Cobra teams have had great success this season and look ahead with anticipation toward the Vermont State Championships in Bellows Falls on March 18-19,” said Barsalou.

Xcel Bronze Team Individual first place honors:

  • Lorelei Shackett of Cornwall, AA(38.0), V(9.6), UB(9.75), BB(9.65), FX(9.0)
  • Charli Fahoury of Wallingford, AA(36.9), V(9.7), UB(10.0)
  • Lucie Goelz of Rutland, AA(38.0), V(9.6)
  • Beatrix Hagge of Plymouth, BB(9.75)
  • Erin Taylor of Castleton, UB(9.7)
  • Maddison Larson of West Rutland, AA(37.9)
  • Bailey Wilbur of Whiting, FX(9.3)
  • Avalon Rheaume of Salisbury, V(9.7), BB(9.8)
  • Emilia Ribeiro of Poultney, BB(9.2)

Xcel Silver Team Individual first place honors:

  • Karsyn Koontz of Jamaica, V(9.6), BB(9.6), FX(9.6), AA(38.05)
  • Hazel Mabey of Wallingford, V(9.65), UB(9.7), BB(9.75), FX(9.55), AA(38.65)
  • Bay Sparks of Castleton, V(9.7), UB(9.65), BB(9.4), AA(38.0)
  • Eliza Myrick of Bridport, UB(9.6)
  • Freyja Borgia of Winhall, FX(9.35)

Xcel Gold Team Individual first place honors:

  • Amelia Gibbs of Brandon, UB(9.4)
  • Romi Buckley of Manchester UB(9.55)
  • Xcel Platinum Team Individual first place honors:
  • Phoebe Tashjian of Manchester, V (8.6)
  • Xcel Diamond Team Individual first place honors:
  • Karena Kuehl of Rutland, AA (37.3), Beam (9.55)

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