Viking Athlete of the Week, Feb. 6

From the coach:  I nominated Paige Bauer for athlete of the week because she leads by example. As a team captain and fifth-year veteran on the team, Paige really knows her teammates’ strengths and challenges them to try new things in an effort to build up our team’s scoring potential and push them to be the best gymnasts they can be. She inspires her teammates by having the same expectations for her own gymnastics. 

Favorite thing about sports: The feeling I get after hitting a routine or doing something really well and all my teammates cheering so loud and being so supportive. Gymnastics is such a rewarding sport when you put the time and effort into it.

Person who has influenced you:  Chris Johnson (coach) and Alexys Olson and Keeley Ertl (teammates). Chris has been my coach since 7th grade and she always pushes me to do my best. Without her I would not be the gymnast I am. Alexys and Keeley did gymnastics with me since I was six up until they graduated. They still come back to support me in everything and drive me to push myself further – they’re my best friends. 

How do you prepare for a game or meet?:  I always chew gum, always, and it’s been the same exact kind for all my sports and years of being in sports. I also always listen to music, and then at the meet right before march in, I lay on the floor in child’s pose, which Bekah calls “Paige Mode,” and just breathe and visualize my routines.

Highlight of athletic career: My most recent highlight is getting a 9.5 on my vault, which is the highest score I have ever gotten in high school gymnastics. A highlight earlier in the year was my 9.35 on floor. I’ve also received All Conference, All State, and Honorable Mentions. 

Future goals:  My future goal is to get a state appearance for gymnastics. That would be a huge accomplishment for me because my whole life has really been devoted to gymnastics.

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