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July 12, 2020

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All-Region gymnastics: Shea McGee, Camas

McGee uses two other sports to excel at gymnastics

By , Columbian Assistant Sports Editor
2 Photos
All-Region gymnast Shea McGee of Camas also competes in diving during the fall and in the pole vault in spring to help her gymnastics skills in the winter season.
All-Region gymnast Shea McGee of Camas also competes in diving during the fall and in the pole vault in spring to help her gymnastics skills in the winter season. (Alisha Jucevic/The Columbian) Photo Gallery

Gymnastics can be demanding.

Not only are the rigors of training and competing in the sport demanding, but it also can sometimes require a major time commitment.

“The winter season is more chaotic,” Camas junior Shea McGee said, “because both high school gymnastics and club gymnastics. But once the club season ends (in March), it relaxes a lot more.”

Given that, it would be understandable if a high school gymnast decided to relax during the gymnastics offseason.

But not McGee.

Shea McGee is unique. She’s a standout gymnast who is also a three-sport varsity high school athlete.

McGee believes participating in other sports — diving and track and field — has helped make her a better gymnast.

And the results support that. After helping Camas capture its third consecutive state team title in gymnastics, McGee has been selected as The Columbian’s All-Region gymnast of the year for a third consecutive season.

“I feel like gymnastics has helped me with the other two sports,” McGee said. “I started diving my freshman year and I felt that my gymnastics background and knowing how to flip and stuff has really helped me get far in diving. Then in the pole vault, I felt that my gymnastics and my upper body strength from gymnastics have helped me figure out pole vaulting easier.”

Last fall, McGee was a state-meet participant in diving, placing 15th at the 4A state meet. Last spring was McGee’s first competing in track and field in the pole vault. She was also a state-meet participant in track, placing 12th in the 4A pole vault at state.

“When I just do gymnastics, I might get a little tired of it, or kind of feel run down,” McGee said. “But when I do the other sports, it works other muscles that might not be worked in gymnastics. And I just like the experience of being able to do more than one main sport.”

In gymnastics, McGee placed fourth overall at state in the all-around with a score of 37.575, after being the all-around state champion in 2019. She also placed sixth on vault, fourth on bars, third on beam, second on floor exercise.

“I feel that since last year I won the individual all-around that I had that pressure to do it again,” McGee said. “But I felt that if I tried my best and did my best, it would contribute to the team.”

McGee said winning the state title took away the disappointment of not repeating as all-around champion.

“In the past couple of years, winning the team title has made us closer as a team,” McGee said. “I think we’ve figured out what team actually means and what goes along with that, the expectation of what everyone needs to do.”

When McGee arrived at Camas High School, the school had never won a state team title in gymnastics. Now after her junior season, the Papermakers are three-time champions.

And McGee is already looking forward to next year and a possible fourth straight team title.

“I think that would mean a lot to me just because of how much gymnastics has been a part of my life,” McGee said. “And I think it would be really cool to look back and say my team won four years in a row. And I think for the program, it would be really good because maybe more people would want to try gymnastics and be part of our amazing team.”

Rest of the All-Region gymnastics team

Shaela Ausmus, Washougal

4A Greater St. Helens League player of the year, placed second at the 4A district tournament.

Olivia Bane, Camas

The 3A Greater St. Helens League co-player of the year, third in district and sixth at state tournament.

Peyton Cody, Camas

Senior helped Evergreen to team state title by placing fourth overall at the 3A state tournament.

Katelyn Epperly, Skyview

Junior was 4A GSHL first-team pick, placed fourth at district tournament and third at 4A state tournament.

Lili Ford, Camas

Freshman was first-team 3A GSHL pick, placed fifth at district and 10th at the state tournament.

Alyssa Shibata, Camas

The 3A Greater St. Helens League co-player of the year, sixth in district and third at 3A state tournament.