It was a roar that almost made the roof come off the Toronto Coliseum – the home crowd reacting to Ellie Black’s floor exercise score that secured the silver medal in the women’s artistic gymnastics team event at Toronto 2015.
Competing in the third and final subdivision of the day, the Canadian quintet of Black, Maegan Chant, Madison Copiak, Isabela Onyshko and Victoria-Kayen Woo knew exactly what they needed to do to get themselves on the podium. And while there were some shaky moments, in particular a hard fall from Black on the uneven bars, they were able to put together a series of solid performances to slot themselves in behind the Americans (173.800) but ahead of Brazil (165.400) with a team score of 166.500.
“Gymnastics is a tough sport. Sometimes that happens,” Black said of her bars routine, a score that Canada was able to drop and not count towards the overall ranking. “You gotta be able to pick up and still continue on with your routine, especially for the team.”
Competing a day after the Canadian men just missed a medal in their team event, Onyshko said they had talked with their teammates who gave them some advice about the partisan crowd.
“They told us it was incredible and that it gave them a lot of energy and to feed off of it,” she said. “It was a very good experience. Very different than anything I experienced before. I loved the energy that it gave.”
Black also appreciated the support, particularly for her floor exercise which clinched the silver medal.
“It was incredible knowing you have the whole arena behind you,” she said. “It definitely helped, especially on floor. The last event, you’re tired, the crowd’s bringing you up to kind of play to them so I think it was very nice to have them cheering. It was so fun.”
The team competition also doubled as the qualification round for the individual events. Black and Onyshko advanced to the individual all-around final in sixth and seventh place, respectively. Black will also compete in the eight-woman apparatus finals for vault, beam and floor exercise. Chant will join her in the vault final. Onyshko qualified for uneven bars, along with Copiak. Woo advanced to the beam final.