How many Acadian teen girls can boast that not only did they meet their idol after they had sex on their own at the end of a plane trip out of the country, but that event was also the impetus for the rest of her destiny. Alexa Melanson is one of those rare girls.
Earlier this week, Alexa became the first Moncton Beauséjour Club gymnast to be accepted into an American university that is part of the NCAA. Beginning this fall, the 17-year-old will be wearing the colors of the Owls gymnastics team at Southern Connecticut State University.
An extraordinary feat when we know that in 50 years of history, Beauséjour has never seen anyone reach the NCAA.
According to Alexa, it was her participation in a development camp 1,500 kilometers from home that led her to her new destination.
In the spring of 2019, at the age of 15, she convinced her parents to let her go on an adventure in order to participate in Woodward Summer Camp, which is located in the heart of the woods and in the middle of the state. Pennsylvania.
Coaches include her idol, Madison Cochian, one of the best gymnasts on the world stage of the past decade.
Clearly Alexa, who hadn’t traveled alone until then, had to play the right cards to persuade her mother Martin and father Louis to accept her.
Fortunately for her, her “old comrades” are the same former top athletes. Martin was also a gymnast for Posseigur FC in her youth and then trained there. Lewis, already immortalized into the New Brunswick Sports Hall of Fame as a hockey player with Aigles Bleus of Moncton University who won the Canadian title in 1990, was recently honored by PGA Canada who awarded him the Jack-McLaughlin Award for Best Junior Golf Leader.
“We understood that this is her passion and our role is to support her,” says Luis Melanson.
“Since she was in the eighth grade she has told us that she wants to go to study in the US to do gymnastics in a good college program. All her friends at the club have told her that she cannot do that. But my daughter has a pig’s head. It is amazing that she is the first to arrive at the club in 50 years.” We are very proud and happy for her, “notes the father.
“That trip was the reason I was named to the NCAA team,” Alexa says. This trip gave me a lot of confidence. I saw that I could support myself. “
Byron Knox Calls
Obviously, at a time of the outbreak, employment on Canadian soil is not what it used to be, and Alexa had to work hard to get the attention of American universities. So she has sent a summary of her career to various US shows, along with a video of her in action where she shows what she is capable of.
Byron Knox, the New Ols coach, was the first to call her. This Knox is not the most recent entrant as his résumé includes, among other things, four national titles for the Excellence Coach (2009, 2010, 2012 and 2013) as Head Coach of the Purple Knights at the University of Bridgeport. He also led Bridgeport to six consecutive national titles in the Second Division, from 2009 to 2014.
“Byron Knox called me twice and we had long conversations. I imagine he wanted to know more about me. Depending on the kind of questions he asked me, he might have wanted to know if I was an easy-to-work girl,” she confirms.
“I was so happy when he told me the good news two weeks ago. It was not until Sunday that it was really official with all the papers signed,” says the student from Lodese School, who will begin studying sociology in the fall with the intention of becoming a lawyer at a later time.
Its great power, the ray
Alexa Melanson, a gymnast from the age of five, has collected an impressive array of medals and trophies.
Her accomplishments included three regional championships, one Atlantic champion and a gold medal off the bar at the Eastern Canada Championship.
“The bar is my specialty, but I’m also very strong on the ground as well as doing well in the basement. My weakness is the uneven bars. I plan to work this summer to improve my routine,” she says.
In the short term, the 5-foot-1 gymnast is hoping above all to get to know her new surroundings.
“I can’t wait to work with a new coach and travel with the team. It’s another level.” She said, “I’m entering the big leagues.”
Alexa Melanson adds: “In the medium and long term, I just want to get good results to help the club win.”
Before and after Posegur Club
For the Beauséjour Gymnastics Club in Moncton, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary in operation this year, Alexa Melanson membership in the NCAA with Southern Connecticut State Owls University couldn’t be better. It is the first time that a club gymnast has achieved this milestone.
Tania McMahon, Head Coach and Director of the Posegor FC coaching program, is full of praise for her young stepson.
“Alexa has been part of our club’s competitive element from a very early age,” reveals this passion for gymnastics. Alexa is the type of gymnast who has always found his motivation through specific goals, whether that is by qualifying for a regional team, achieving a certain degree in the routine, or even learning a new move on a machine. “
“She has a pretty good idea of what steps to take to reach her goals and she has the determination and level of sport to be successful,” says Tania McMahon.
According to the latter, the main quality of Alexa Melanson as a gymnast is her design. However, she does have many other skills.
“In addition to being very assertive, Alexa is a fun and positive athlete who is always easy to work with. Her gymnastics is clean and she is confident in her potential. She also has an incredible skill bank. These are the qualities the referees are looking for in competition that have enabled him to be so successful for our club and for the boycott.” Says Tania McMahon.
When asked if this announcement could have positive consequences for the club’s future, she replied in the affirmative.
“For the young gymnasts in our club, this advertisement reinforces the idea that with a lot of work and determination, goals can be achieved. What Alexa has just demonstrated is that even if you come from a small county like New Brunswick, there is no goal too big,” she says. Tania McMahon.