Shavahn Church To Join UCLA Gymnastics Team For 2008 Season
Nov. 9, 2007
World Championships competitor Shavahn Church of Tarzana, Calif. has signed a grant-in-aid to attend UCLA and will enroll in school during the winter quarter and compete in the upcoming 2008 gymnastics season.
Church, who trains at Wallers' GymJam Academy under UCLA assistant head coach Chris Waller, competed for Great Britain at the 2005 World Championships and placed 20th in the all-around. She also represented Great Britain at the 2006 European Championships. In 2006, Church won silver medals on bars and in the team competition at the Commonwealth Games and placed fifth in the all-around. She also helped Heathrow win the 2006 British Team Championship after placing first on two of the three events in which she competed.
Church, who has dual citizenship with the U.S. and Great Britain, was a member of the U.S. Junior National Team in 2003 and qualified for the 2004 U.S. Championships after a fifth-place all-around finish at the American Classic. Church also won a bronze medal on floor exercise at the 2004 American Classic. She has a skill named after her in the International Code of Points on the uneven bars - a release move called the "Church" (toe-on piked Tkatchev).
"I have known Shavahn since she was nine years old, and I have always felt that she was the epitome of an artistic gymnast," said UCLA head coach Valorie Kondos Field. "She is as brilliant in her artistry of the sport as she is exciting with her gymnastics skills."
Church will be the third member of the 2008 UCLA team who has competed at the World Championships, joining 2005 gold medalist and 2001 bronze medalist Tasha Schwikert and two-time Canadian team member Marci Bernholtz.
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