SARATOGA SPRINGS — Ava Dallas, a freshman at Saratoga Springs High School, is already breaking records for the district. Last Saturday, Dallas broke the Section II vault record; it was previously 9.325 in time and she had a 9.4.
“It was really exciting, and it was nice to see that my hard work paid off. It was also a great experience to see my coaches and teammates and how they congratulated me, it really made me feel good,” Dallas explained.
Dallas is also a cheerleader during football season, having started that this year.
“Cheer was really fun, it was very different for me because it was something I hadn’t done before and I was a flyer so I went up in the stunts. It was fun to learn something new and if I don’t make it into college for gymnastics I have something to fall back on. I plan to do it again next football season,” Dallas said.
Other than sports, Dallas is also in the Best Buddies program at school.
“The Best Buddies program is basically you are paired with somebody with learning disabilities and you get to go to events with them and really spend time and become friends with them. I went to the clubs’ fair during the walk-through at the high school and I was really interested in it, so I decided to join. My sister also did it,” she said.
Dallas started doing gymnastics at only 10-years-old at the YMCA, doing the beginning levels. She then transitioned into a club team called Stepping Star in Ballston Spa.
“After two years at Stepping Star, I decided it was very time consuming and since I was going into high school, I wanted something less time consuming, so I decided that I would start varsity gymnastics at school,” Dallas explained.
She has dreams of doing gymnastics in college and is attending a camp this summer at Penn State where she intends to scope out the gymnastics program there.
“When I was younger I really wanted to go to the Olympics but as you get older, gymnastics is such a very hard sport on the body; it’s not really likely at my age now to be able train elite and then go to the Olympics, but I still want to go to college for it,” she said.
Dallas loves her gymnastics team and immediately felt at ease once the season started.
“It was very easy to make the transition from club to team. The girls and coaches are really friendly.”
Her favorite gymnast is Laurie Hernandez.
“I love how expressive she is in her floor routine; she really makes it look fun,” Dallas explained.
Dallas’ favorite part of gymnastics is the floor routine. Dallas is also an Honors student.
“Her mother and I are quiteproud of her accomplishments. She is able to juggle everything and still maintain a 98 average while taking all Honors classes, no less,” said her father, Eugene Dallas.
Dallas cites her mom as her main inspiration.
“I really want to make my mom proud because she gets really excited when I go to competitions and she’s really there to support me through everything. Even at school when I have a test, she’s like ‘good luck’ and it makes me feel really good inside,” Dallas said.
For more information on when the Saratoga Springs gymnastics team plays, check out the Sports At a Glance page.