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Marshall Times to feature local gymnasts

December 9, 2013 - Mike Donahey

Madison and Payton Gatzlaff are two young Marshalltown athletes who have excelled in the competitive sport of gymnastics.

Madison, 13 and Payton, 10, train at Ankeny's Triad Competitive Gymnastics Center many hours per week.

On weekends, there is competition against other clubs.

"Madison is training at Level 8 with the Triad club after just missing the state championship last year at Level 7, where she finished second," said her dad, Craig Gatzlaff. "The Triad Level 8 team was the super 8 champion last year for the Western region and undefeated through the year."

"And Payton just won the Blackhawk Invite in Waterloo for Level 4. She was first in all four events and won all around and will compete in the Iowa state championship event later this month."

Triad periodically competes against Coach Liang Chow's Gymnastics and Dance Institute in West Des Moines. Chow has coached Olympians, including Iowan Shawn Johnson and Gabby Douglas.

When not practicing, competing or being home-schooled under the watchful eye of mom Leasa Gatzlaff, the sisters like to shop, visit family and play with their pets.

The Gatzlaff family moved to Marshalltown from Texas one year ago so that the girl's grandmother — the late Pat Olerich — who was suffering from cancer — could be closer to family in Iowa and Minnesota.

Read more about the family and how neighbors and business people made them feel welcome. You will find that and more in this Sunday’s Marshall Times.



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