Raleigh Patrick, a sophomore at Episcopal High School, knew what she wanted when she went to this year’s Girl’s Gymnastics State Meet held at Baton Rouge Magnet High School on May 3 – she wanted to win.
At last year’s meet, as a freshman, she had a disappointing score on her vault attempt that landed her just outside of a medal, giving her an overall fourth place finish.
This year, she said, she was determined to make things different, and she did by winning the Division I individual state title with an overall score of 37.550.
“I wasn’t worried about anything else but vault,” Patrick said after winning her title, adding that after last year’s fourth place finish she wanted nothing else but to go out and win it this year. “I did a better vault; that was the biggest difference,” she said.
Patrick credits her success on the vault to making sure that she did a little extra every day in practice to make sure that she would be prepared for this year’s competition.
Clearly that little extra paid off in a big way. In addition to her 8.900 score on the vault, she scored a 9.500 on bars, 9.450 on beam, and a 9.700 on her floor routine that was the highest score of the entire competition.
Patrick began training as a gymnast at age two at a small gym in Plaquemine with Jenna Clouatre, then moved to a gym in Brusly. Since the age of six, she has been training at Elite Gymnastics in Baton Rouge, and currently trains four hours a day, six days a week.
As she enters her junior year at Episcopal, Patrick says she knows that these next two years are incredibly important for her future as a gymnast, and she will continue to push herself to do even better than she did at this year’s championship and win the all-around again with even better scores.
“I plan on doing college gymnastics. That has always been the plan for me,” Patrick said. I haven’t had any offers yet, but this next year of competition should have an impact on offers in the future.”
She said that getting into her ideal college is what pushes her the most.
“I want to have choices,” she said, “so working hard is how I’m going to get them.”