COSTELLO AND PATRIOTS DOMINATE GYMNASTICS IN 2019

Nov 26, 2019 | Gymnastics

COSTELLO AND PATRIOTS DOMINATE GYMNASTICS IN 2019

By Eric Braun
Senior Grace Costello of Saint John Vianney and the Freehold Township Patriots dominated the Shore Conference and the NJSIAA field, winning the All-Around and team titles, respectively.


 
Costello has dominated her competition the past couple of seasons and went out in style. After an incredible junior campaign that included the All-Around title in the Shore Conference Tournament, Costello picked up where she left off and dominated the field her senior year.
Costello topped Anna Pagliaro of Freehold Township (37.725), Brooke McNamara of Howell (37.65), Katie Keogh of Middletown South (37.35) and Farrah Chernov of Marlboro (37.325) with her own mark of 38.225. The championship performance included marks of 9.85 for first on vault, 9.4 for fifth in bars, 9.325 for second on beam and 9.65 for first place on floor.
Coming off a sophomore season that slowed her with back issues, Costello rebounded her junior year, and now surpassed excellence in her senior season. The Lancers gymnast, after securing her second straight Shore Conference All-Around title, was primed for a state title run. Costello had no let up in her performances and secured her first All-Around NJSIAA title and Gymnast of the Year award.  
 
Costello earned the All-Around title with a mark of 38.65 that included personal bests on floor (9.8) and bars (9.75), and also won the balance beam (9.45). 
Freehold Township has turned into the state powerhouse and this season completed the perfect season capturing both the Shore Conference and state championship crowns. The Patriots finally took home their first Shore Conference Tournament title since 1991 and did so in coach Ashley Montgomery’s third season at the helm.  
In the Shore Conference Tournament, the Patriots finished with a score of 112.575, topping Saint John Vianney (109.225), Howell (107.625), Marlboro (107.625), Middletown South (106.150) and Brick Memorial (105.625). Freehold Township was led by junior Anna Pagliaro, who finished second in the All-Around, winning the bars (9.5), fourth on vault (9.725) and fifth on beam (9.425).
 
When it came to the state competition, Freehold Township had already won back-to-back titles and was looking to make it a three-peat this season. The Patriots did not disappoint and won their third straight team title with a dominant performance that included a team score of 111.15.  
The Patriots held off their Shore Conference foes Middletown South, which finished second with a score of 108.625; Howell, which finished in third place with a score of 108.15; Saint John Vianney, which finished in fourth place with a score of 107.625, Marlboro, which placed sixth with a score of 106.975; and Brick Memorial, which finished in seventh place with a score of 105.825.
 
It was Pagliaro who once again led the way for the Patriots, reaching the podium by winning the vault with a score of 9.7, took second on the beam with a score of 9.4, took fifth on the floor with a score of 9.55 and third place on bars with a score of 9.425. She would once again finish second to Costello this season with an All-Around mark of 38.075, but the junior who has been nothing short of excellent the past two seasons, will look to rein the gymnastics world next season in her senior year.
 
Joining Pagliaro with a great 2019 season was Jenelle Cloud who finished fifth in the All-Around with a score of 37.15, fourth on bars (9.375), 11th on beam (9.1) and sixth on floor (9.475). Another standout was Jamie Polonet, who took 11th in the All-Around with a score of 36.25, ninth on bars (8.9), and fifth on floor (9.525).  
 
The Patriots finished off an incredible 2019 season with a record of 13-0 and will lose just three seniors to graduation in Isabella Abreo, Gianna Spinale and Sarah Triolo.