This weekend was the first youth Divisional Championship for ABS (bouldering). I traveled to North Carolina to compete for one of 7 bids to nationals. The comp was held at Triangle Rock Club, a gym I hadn’t been to before. I was really psyched going into the competition because I really like to see all of my friends from USA Climbing. I had high expectations of myself and planned on using this comp as a way to see how much stronger I have gotten.
Divisionals 2012 - Michaela Kiersch
Saturday was the qualifying round of the competition. I was put in the morning session along with ten other Female Junior competitors. While the warm up in iso was not ideal, we made good use of the campus board and hangboard. There were four problems in this round. While Emily Pate and I flashed the first, third, and fourth, the second problem proved to be a tricky sequence. The obvious sequence was to go from two underling start holds and press into a mini rook above our heads. From there, a small crimp and pinch would lead into a relatively moderate end to the problem. After a few tries doing this sequence, I kept falling trying to press out of the roof (which I later learned is where everyone else had trouble as well), so I decided to try some different beta. I went from the undercling start all the way to the crimp foot hold above the roof. While this may not have been what the setters intended, it is the only thing that worked and I was the only girl to send. Going into finals, I was in first, closely followed by Emily and Leah Scott.
Sunday morning was full of excitement as the top ten competitors for every category rushed into iso. The small area was packed, and I had mixed feelings about being in the second stack. I was happy that I didn’t have to be squished while trying to warm up, but at the same time, waiting in iso for 4 hours is no fun either. Eventually, my turn came around and I was really psyched to see the problems for finals. Each category had three problems. Emily and I both flashed the first two, but the third problem was a bit trickier. The feet we needed to use for a crucial drop knee seemed too high for Emily to use them, but lucky for me, I’m not very tall! I think this may be one of those rare occasions where being short has helped me. I sent the problem on my second try. I was really psyched to know that I get to go to nationals along with six other competitors from my category.
Until then, I’ll be training my butt of trying to get stronger for nationals!