March 12, 2016

Sophomore Leads Columbus North to Gymnastics State Title
Sophomore Claire Thompson won the bars and beam titles and collected the all-around crown helping lead Columbus North to the IHSAA Gymnastics State Championship at Ball State's Worthen Arena.

The Bull Dogs put up a state record 114.850 points to outdistance two-time defending state champion Valparaiso's 113.250 points. Fort Wayne Bishop Dwenger placed third (111.800), Crown Point was fourth (110.950), its best finish ever, and Chesterton (110.475) rounded out the top five.

It was the third gymnastics state championship for Columbus North and the Bull Dogs' first since winning the first two state tournaments in 1973 and 1974. Sandy Freshour was the Columbus North coach.

Thompson recorded a 9.7 in the bars competition and a 9.675 in the beam and earned 38.400 points in the race for All-Around honors. Teamates Katrina May placed second with 38.325 and Ashley Holliday ended fifth 38.125.

Morgan Township's Kylee Maxwell won her second state championship in three years on the vault with a score of 9.850 edging out Holliday, the runner-up with 9.775. Maxwell, the 2014 all-around state champ, finished third this year with 38.325.

Owen Valley senior Anna Watkin finished her career with another state title winning the floor exercise for the first time. Her 9.775 bested the field and added to her resume that includes beam titles in 2013 and 2015 as well as last year's all-around crown. She took second in this year's beam as the defending champion.

44th Annual IHSAA Gymnastics State Finals 
March 12, 2016
Worthen Arena, Ball State University, Muncie, IN

Final Team Scores
1. Columbus North 114.850
2. Valparaiso 113.250
3. Fort Wayne Bishop Dwenger 111.800
4. Crown Point 110.950
5. Chesterton 110.475
6. Columbus East 108.950
7. Owen Valley 107.425
8. Elkhart Central 107.300
9. Homestead 107.000

State Champions
All-Around: Claire Thompson, 10, Columbus North, 38.400.
Vault: Kylee Maxwell, 12, Morgan Township, 9.850.
Uneven Bars: Claire Thompson, 10, Columbus North, 9.70.
Balance Beam: Claire Thompson, 10, Columbus North, 9.675.
Floor Exercise: Anna Watkin, 12, Owen Valley, 9.775.

Columbus North's Katrina May named Ball Mental Attitude Award winner
Following the event, members of the IHSAA Executive Committee named Katrina May of Columbus North High School as the recipient of the Mildred M. Ball Mental Attitude Award.

The award is presented annually to a senior participant in the state finals who is deemed to have best demonstrated mental attitude, scholarship, leadership and athletic ability in gymnastics.

May has been an All-Around State competitor every year of her high school career and has served as team captain for Columbus North each of the past two seasons. This year, she was named to the Academic All-State team for gymnastics. At Columbus North, she is a member of the National Honor Society, is a representative on the CNHS Student-Athletic Board, and also served as class secretary during both her sophomore and junior years. May has also competed in the state finals for Track & Field the past two years, placing sixth in the pole vault last season.

The daughter of Dave and Angie May of Columbus, Katrina May will attend either Rose Hulman, MIT or Harvard University with the intention of majoring in Engineering and competing in athletics. She also becomes the second Columbus North student in the last two weeks to win an IHSAA mental attitude award joining classmate Paige Littrell, who was honored following the Class 4A girls basketball state championship game.

The IHSAA Executive Committee, on behalf of Indiana Farm Bureau Insurance, presented $1,000 to Columbus North High School's general scholarship fund in the name of Katrina May.

The mental attitude award is named in honor of the former IHSAA assistant commissioner who served the Association from 1977 to 1997. During her career, Ball administered the state gymnastics tournament among other sports and also oversaw the licensing and training of all contest officials in the state of Indiana.