Sept. 17, 2007
Providence, RI - Brown Head Gymnastics Coach Sara Carver-Milne has recently announced five athletes who will be competing for the Bears' in the 2008 gymnastics season. Brown's recruiting class includes Vicki Zanelli (Houston, TX), Vida Rivera (New York, NY), Rachel Desmarais (Kingwood, TX), Chelsey Binkley (Marietta, GA), and Melissa Bowe (West Barnstable, MA).
Zanelli, one of the Bears' top newcomers who is sure to make an immediate impact, finished 7th on the bars and 27th all-around at this year's Junior Olympic Nationals and has been a Level 10 competitor for four years. A four-time regional qualifier and the 2007 regional floor champion, Zanelli finished third in the all-around at the Regional Championships this year. She is a two-time Texas State Bar Champion. At the state meet in 2007, she finished third on the bars and ninth all-around.
Rivera, another four-year Level 10 competitor, is a two-time JO National Qualifier and placed 15th on the bars at the JO Nationals. Rivera is a three-time Level 10 Regional qualifier and placed second on the floor and bars, and took third in the all-around as well. She is the New York State Bar Champion and placed second in the all-around at the Championships. Rivera also placed first on the bars at the Capitol Cup Bar Finals.
Also joining the Bears' is Desmarais, who has been Level 10 for three years. Desmarais competed for both her club and high school teams. Most notably, she was a JO National Qualifier in 2006. She also placed fifth in the all-around at the 2006 Regionals. Desmarais was a two-year varsity letter winner at Kingwood High School.
Binkley, a Level 10 competitor and a five-time Regional Qualifier, was the Georgia State Floor Champion and placed third in the all-around at the Championships. As a Level 9, Binkley competed at the Eastern National Championships and placed ninth on the floor.
The Bears' final freshman is Bowe, a Level 10 who competed for both her club and high school teams. As a Level 9, Bowe was an Eastern National Championships Qualifier. She was the Massachusetts State Vault and Bars Champion, and also placed third in the all-around. She holds the school record on bars. Bowe earned the Boston Globe All-Scholastic award in 2005 and 2006, and was also given the Barnstable High School Sportsmanship Award in 2006 and 2007.