Eagle Climbing and Fitness athletes compete at home USA Climbing lead/top rope regional qualifier | VailDaily.com

Eagle Climbing and Fitness athletes compete at home USA Climbing lead/top rope regional qualifier

Gym debuted flash format to showcase regional hosting capabilities

Sofia Salazar placed seventh in the Female Youth C category at last Saturday's USA Climbing regional qualifier event at Eagle Climbing and Fitness.
Courtney Moore/Courtesy photo

Seven Eagle Climbing and Fitness athletes finished in the top five and 14 were top-10 placers at last Saturday’s home USA Climbing Region 41 lead/top rope qualifier event. Over 150 athletes from around the state arrived at Larry Moore’s gym for the flash format competition.

“We had really great representation and it was the first time this format has been done at any event in the nation this year,” the Eagle Climbing and Fitness owner said of the championship-style competition. The choice to use a flash format was twofold.

“Partially to give a better experience for the athletes and also to showcase that our facility could handle hosting a regional championships, the next level of competition,” Moore said. “That would be kind of our next big endeavor and that’s kind of one of our goals.”

Brynn Lindal competes in the Female Youth B category on Saturday at Eagle Climbing and Fitness.
Courtney Moore/Courtesy photo

“Its a little more pressure because they only got one shot at it,” he continued. “But a little less pressure in that they didn’t have to stand in line for 45 minutes for a climb and not know whether they would get all their climbs in.”

Athletes were given one chance to complete each of the three prescribed climbs, with points awarded based on the hold reached. Unlike the very similar “on-site” format used at regional championships, athletes were not placed in isolation during the waiting period but were allowed to watch other competitors take to the wall. Once each of the 37 Eagle Climbing athletes got their shot, they made the most of it.

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“We had some really good results,” Moore said, adding that many came from first-time lead/top rope (youth C and D compete in top rope and youth A, B and juniors all compete in lead climbing) athletes.

Sofia Salazar finished seventh in the female youth C category and Fiona Ball finished ninth in the female youth D.

Boulder’s Kara Meymaris looks for a hold during Saturday’s regional qualifier competition at Eagle Climbing and Fitness.
Courtney Moore/Courtesy photo

“That was her first ever rope climbing competition, so that was kind of a standout,” Moore said of Ball. Salazar, who joined the team just over a year ago from a gym that only offered bouldering, makes the trek over Vail Pass from Summit for practices three times a week.

“It’s been a big endeavor for her to train with us; just a lot of commitment,” Moore said.

“She’s had some great results this season and has been working really hard.”

Many of the “veterans” continued their momentum from strong USA Climbing bouldering campaigns and American Scholastic Climbing League seasons as well. Brynley Velez and Greyson Gibson both placed second in the female and male youth D division, respectively.

Athletes competed in a “flash format” competition, meaning they had only one attempt and a limited amount of time to perform a route. They were scored based on the holds they reached.
Courtney Moore/Courtesy photo

“That was her first time getting second at a competition ever, so that was kind of a big deal,” Moore said of Velez, who had the top finish of any girl. “Grayson has just continued to perform at a high level, same with Dylan,” the coach continued, referencing male youth C fourth-place finisher Dylan Hewitt. Tyler Brown finished fifth in male youth D and Elliot Gray-Lopresti finished sixth in the male youth A to round out the top-10 placing boys.

Eagle Climbing and Fitness athlete results

(place, name, category)


2. Brynley Velez
3. Mary Friery – FYA
3. Nora Pyle – FYD
3. Violet Voboril – FYD
6. Iris Sheldon – FYB
7. Reese Manley – FYA
7. Sofia Salazar – FYC
9. Ella Regjo – FYC
9. Fiona Ball – FYD
10. Tallulah Beauchamp – FYD
11. Lakelynn Wahouske – FYC
11. Emaline Swonger – FYD
13. Ashlyn Kirkham – FYD
14. Brynn Lindal – FYB
14. Chloe Cavanaugh – FYC
14. Gillian Pyle – FYD
15. Eva Klesner – FYC
17. Holly Berghauer – FYC
20. Hayley Morahan – FYC
21. Peyton Harmon – FYC

2. Greyson Gibson – MYD
4. Dylan Hewitt – MYC
5. Tyler Brown – MYD
6. Elliot Gray-Lopresti – MYA
11. Waylon Larson – MYC
11. Braiden Weber – MYD
11. William Larson – MYD
13. Finnegan McCurdy – MYA
14. Fynn Nottingham – MYD
15. Jack Gaither – MYD
16. River Gallegos – MYD
17. Booker Hill – MYD
18. Paxton Brown – MYD
22. Oliver Schwartz – MYC
24. Logan Weaver – MYC
25. Wyatt Larson – MYC
26. Eli Arnot – MYC

Mary Friery was third in female youth A and Nora Pyle and Violet Voboril tied for the bronze in the female youth D category. Iris Sheldon (sixth), Reese Manley (seventh), Ella Regjo (ninth) and Tallula Beauchamp (10th) rounded out the top-10 finishing girls.

The top 15 Region 41 youth athletes, based off “ranking points” from their two best finishes at regional qualifying events like the one on Saturday, qualify for the lead/top rope regionals at Gripstone Climbing in Colorado Springs on May 13. The best athletes from that competition move onto the Divisional Championships at Stone Age Climbing North in Albuquerque, New Mexico June 3-4.

Before he can confirm who will be advancing to regionals, Moore and his athletes will have to wait for the final qualifying events to conclude at the end of this weekend.

“We have had a lot of kids that have qualified very high, so there’s a good chance they’ll be going,” he said.

A climber reaches for a hold during Saturday’s regional qualifier event.
Courtney Moore/Courtesy photo

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