The Madison Lady Bulldogs gymnastics team has 16 gymnasts (grades 7-12) vying for a spot on the varsity team this season.
There is only one senior, along with four juniors, one sophomore, eight freshmen and two seventh-graders.
Maridee Dossett begins her 20th year coaching the Lady Bulldogs. She will look to senior Isabel Gors and juniors Kylie Krusemark, Raena Rost, Olivia Flemming and Fiona Donelan to provide leadership to this young squad.
"Isabel is an all-round competitor and the only senior on the team," Dossett said. "She is a great leader, motivator and fierce competitor."
Rost has been with the team for five years.
"She has a tremendous work ethic and is energetic," Dossett said. "She leads by example and is fun to watch."
Krusemark has been with the team for five years.
"She was an All-Tournament selection last year," Dossett said. "She will help wherever she's needed, her routines are clean and she's a powerhouse on the vault."
According to Dossett, Flemming has been a tough competitor in her five years on the team, especially on the bars.
"She's small but mighty swinging on the bars and does what it takes to be successful," she said.
Donelan is someone everyone wants to see on the floor exercise. "Everyone stops when her floor music starts because they love the show," Dossett said. "Her poise, facial expressions and passion are evident throughout her routines."
Dossett will also count on freshmen Lexi Hirsch and Sophia Sudenga this year.
"Lexi is headstrong and hard-working. She's kind of a perfectionist and will work until she's got it," Dossett said. "Sophia is coachable and willing to do what it takes for the team. She's graceful and strong."
According to Dossett, the team has a good balance of veteran athletes and underclassmen. "They can share ideas and push each other to be better and step up if there are gaps to fill."
Dossett's main concern is the health of the girls.
Carrie Wieman will be assisting Dossett again this season.
"I'm excited to be back in the gym, allowing the girls to practice what they love," she said. "I'm so thankful for my assistant coach Carrie and the many athletes and past coaches who continue to help us with ideas, advice, coaching, support and choreography. This is not a one-man show."