Maybe in the past Amanda Pisano wouldn’t have been able to pull off her double backhand spring, or maybe she wouldn’t have been able to pick herself up if she fell. Monday, she did both.
The Connetquot sophomore completed the move for the first time before falling off the balance beam mid-routine. She got up and finished, getting points for the move and helping her team to a 149.4-98.5 victory over host Ward Melville. In the process, she helped erase her fears and show she could reach new heights.
“I had it last year and then I stopped working it because I didn’t need it to compete on the level I was at and I started freaking out,” Pisano said. “I got really scared of it and all of a sudden I just got back up and felt that I could do it.”
Pisano proved that she could compete as a Level 9 gymnast while working her way through the all-around to win with 29.75. Alexandra Hardie came in second with 29.55. Pisano’s ability to get back up and not let a hiccup dominate her performance has become a strength for her and Connetquot (7-0) during a dominant season in Suffolk II, coach Renee Guerrieri said.
“The Amanda from last year would’ve bombed the rest of her routine, but the fact that she got up and did the rest of her routine, it was gorgeous,” Guerreri said.
Pisano’s success is a display of her tenacity and the pressure she puts on herself. She said the result has been new skills and more success, but sometimes she has to remind herself to dial back how much she demands from herself.
“I feel like I have to do [the move], otherwise I get really mad at myself,” Pisano said. “It’s insane.”
Elizabeth Young won the beam with an 8.1 and the bars with a 7.8. Sarah Moussa, an eighth grader at Oakdale Bohemia Middle School, took second in bars with a 7.25 despite three falls. She won vault with an 8 in a season of increased demand at a new level.
“I had to push myself more because I needed higher skills,” Moussa said.
“I’ve never seen a group like this that are able to keep pushing themselves,” Guerreri said. “They really support each other and lift each other up.”