• By Chelsea Goldschrafe
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  • September 27, 2011 05:38 PM
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MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Throughout the 2012 preseason, the West Virginia University gymnastics team will periodically check in with Mountaineer fans, providing updates on the progress made in Cary Gym and the weight room. The team also will share stories from its multiple team-bonding trips and activities.

This year’s fifth tale comes from junior Chelsea Goldschrafe. One of the team’s most consistent gymnasts, Goldschrafe, a Franklin Lakes, N.J., native, evolved into a three-event specialist in 2011 and competed vault, floor and beam, where she opened WVU’s lineup in all but one meet.

Goldschrafe saw action in all 13 meets in 2011 and earned 348.3 points, the fourth-best team total. An EAGL Specialist of the Week, she finished the season ranked No. 23 in the Southeast region on beam and No. 24 on vault.

A Garrett Ford Academic Honor Roll honoree, the WVU coaches are looking for Goldschrafe to set the example this season in Cary Gym and expect her to have her most-successful year yet.

In my time at West Virginia University, no week was as exciting and energetic on campus as this past week. Not only was it the start of official practice for our team, but also ESPN’s College GameDay stopped here in Morgantown for the WVU-LSU football game. With the football team starting off the season undefeated, the whole state could not wait for the showdown against the Tigers.

The excitement surrounding campus definitely spilled over into Cary Gym. The first week of practice was filled with great energy and gymnastics. Every one of my teammates showed off the hard work she put into upgrading and improving her routines over the off-season. The freshmen also contributed to the first week excitement by showcasing their skills and routines. The new skills and personalities of all the girls will play a big part in the new era of West Virginia Gymnastics.

We concluded our first week with the “World’s Strongest Woman” competition last Friday at 6 a.m.! This conditioning competition consisted of weight and agility exercises. Almost every out-of-season female WVU team participated. Even though our squad did not come out on top, all the girls took an important step toward working together and supporting one another. This exercise definitely helped our team bonding.

Although the weekend ended in a loss for the Mountaineers against the Tigers, the Mountaineer Nation was more supportive than I had ever seen. Even though it is only September, but I know my teammates are anxious to put the pieces together throughout this preseason for a successful 2012 gymnastics season – we want to make our supportive Mountaineer family proud!

Let’s Goooo Mountaineers!