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Canadian juniors win team bronze at L’International Gymnix in Montreal

The Canadian team, led by Ana Padurariu of Oshawa, Ont., placed third with 162.125 points, behind Russia in second place with 163.800, and the runaway winners from the United States with a score of 170.350.

Padurariu was the top Canadian in the individual all-around, placing sixth in a field of 31 competitors from eight countries.

Other members of the Canadian team were Victoria Jurca of Montreal, Hayley de Jong of Vancouver, and Jade Chrobok of Toronto.

The Canadian squad came up with its best performance on the uneven bars to place  third, but struggled on floor (5th), and beam (6th).

Canadian women’s national team director Dave Brubaker of Sarnia, Ont., said the junior squad lost some of its competitive edge by thinking too much about the end result instead of focusing on the process.

“I think they were too focused on the outcomes and we tried to steer them back to the process needed to achieve the best result,” said Brubaker.

“We know the girls are capable of more and we have to really buckle down and work hard to  get more consistency and increase their level of difficulty. They’re young and looking up to the senior team who are fighting for medals at Worlds and Olympics and hopefully these girls can step up and carry on that tradition in the future.”

In the individual all-around event, U.S. gymnasts swept the first three spots, followed by Russian and Japanese competitors in fourth and fifth and Canada’s Padurariu in sixth.

Rounding out the Canadian results, Chrobok placed ninth, Jurca 16th, and de Jong 23rd.

“I didn’t know what to expect, so I just went out there and tried my best on every event,” said Padurariu.

“The big lesson for me is to not worry about anything. I just need to go out confident and know that I can do it because I’ve done it a thousand times in training.”

The competition concludes on Sunday with the junior and senior apparatus finals.

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