Boys Gymnastics: Five-event John Schubert paying dividends for Downers North
Updated: April 28, 2012 7:44PM
John Schubert knew he wouldn’t have big brother Luke Schubert, a 2011 graduate, as a teammate this spring at Downers North.
It was one of the reasons that nearly kept him away from the Doboys gymnastics team.
Fortunately for the Trojans, John Schubert reconsidered. He’s continued to be one of the key competitors on a team that will look to advance to state for the fifth consecutive year. The Trojans placed third last year.
“When thinking about it I realized I really didn’t want do gymnastics this year,” he said. “But as soon as I got back into it, I was into it.”
John Schubert was heavily involved with cheerleading, which isn’t a surprise since Luke is now cheerleading at the University of Illinois. He was very close to saying “no” to gymnastics.
“I was having fun with it and just wanted to do that,” Schubert said. “I ended up going to the first gymnastics practice just to see what it was like and I was like, ‘Wait, this is so much fun,’ and I’ve stayed ever since.”
The Trojans know they can count on two strong all-arounder scores every time out from Luke Wychocki and Strah Sopcic, so Schubert was asked to do more than specialize in certain events, but to step up and compete as an all-arounder as well. Since the season began, he’s settled into being a five-event guy, competing in everything but still rings.
“This is the hardest John has worked in his high school career,” Downers North coach Al Bekkedal said. “It’s paying off. He’s hitting more routines now than he did as a freshman and a sophomore.”
Renald Daemicke, a multi-event specialist, and Tom Brethauer have replaced Schubert on still rings.
A victory at Hinsdale Central’s Canino Invitational on Apr. 5 gave the Trojans their first invite win of the season, but they’re aiming higher, namely for the state series. They will host a sectional on May 4.
“It’s hard not having a big brother here who always encouraged me to better,” Schubert said. “I’ve had to take it on myself and now have more responsibility. I guess it’s part of growing older.”