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Cartwheeling to college: Toy lands gymnastics scholarship to Washington

Coppell+High+School+senior+Kendal+Toy+smiles+after+successfully+landing+her+gymnastics+routine+during+her+practice+on+Wednesday+at+Metroplex+Gymnastics.+Toy+committed+to+the+University+of+Washington+in+2014+and+received+a+full+scholarship.
Coppell High School senior Kendal Toy smiles after successfully landing her gymnastics routine during her practice on Wednesday at Metroplex Gymnastics. Toy committed to the University of Washington in 2014 and received a full scholarship.

Coppell High School senior Kendal Toy smiles after successfully landing her gymnastics routine during her practice on Wednesday at Metroplex Gymnastics. Toy committed to the University of Washington in 2014 and received a full scholarship.

Karis Thomas

Karis Thomas

Coppell High School senior Kendal Toy smiles after successfully landing her gymnastics routine during her practice on Wednesday at Metroplex Gymnastics. Toy committed to the University of Washington in 2014 and received a full scholarship.

Anika Arutla, Staff Writer

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This story has been revised to fit more current information. 

 

Coppell High School senior Kendal Toy thrives on competition. Toy was only 3 when she began gymnastics and 15 years later, she is a verbal commit and plans to officially sign on April 11 to the University of Washington.

 

“Kendal’s passion for gymnastics started in preschool, when she would practice the skills and conditioning she learned in class, easily doubling the time she spent in the gym,” Linus Toy, Kendal’s father, said.

 

Toy verbally committed in 2014, at the end of her freshman year and received a full scholarship offer. She is a level 10, which is the highest level of gymnastics in the junior gymnastics program in the US, gymnast at Metroplex Gymnastics in Allen and she spends around 22 hours a week practicing.

 

“My favorite part about gymnastics is the competition. Even though, I compete all four events, I usually do well on beam but it used to make me the most nervous,” Toy said.

 

Toy credits her success to her coaches, parents and older sister Carena, who graduated in 2016 and is a former gymnast.

 

Toy suffered from two knee injuries throughout her gymnastics career including a torn meniscus on the left knee and a torn acl on the right knee. However, she did not let them dull her passion for gymnastics.

 

She is dedicated to gymnastics and maximizing her potential in the sport,” Toy’s coach Marnie Futch said.  “She has battled several major injuries over the past couple of years and has worked extremely hard to overcome them and come back stronger each time.  Just one major injury can be a real test of perseverance for any athlete.”

 

In her 15 years of gymnastics, Toy has grown not only as a gymnast but also as a person.

 

“On a sports level, Kendal has learned to dig deep and grow, by overcoming fears, learning and mastering new skills, or returning from injury,” Mr. Toy said. “Outside the gym, she has learned to overcome adversity and grown more empathy and sympathy for people in challenging situations.”

 

Another drive for Toy is the support her teammates and overall team gives her from encouraging her to holding her up when things have looked down.

 

“Kendal really loves the team aspect of gymnastics,” teammate Abby Brenner said.  “Your team is always there to help support you and motivate you and I think that really helps drive her.  She has teammates that help push her to be better every day.”

 

Update: Toy did not commit to the University of Washington and is now going to attend Yale University for gymnastics.

 

Follow Anika @anikaarutla

Karis Thomas
Coppell High School senior Kendal Toy chalks her hands as she gets ready for practice on Feb. 14 at Metroplex Gymnastics. Toy has been practicing gymnastics since she was 3 and is a verbal commit to the University of Washington.

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About the Writer
Anika Arutla, Staff Writer
Anika is a sophomore at Coppell High School and it is her first year on the Sidekick staff. When she isn’t writing, she enjoys playing soccer, traveling, watching movies and spending time with her friends and family. You can contact her at [email protected] or follow her on twitter @AnikaArutla
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