The West Virginia University gymnastics coaching staff announced today that Kayla Yancey and Maya Kraus will join the program this fall.
“We are thrilled that Kayla and Maya have chosen WVU and want to be Mountaineers,” associate head coach Travis Doak said. “They join an already strong 2019 class, and we believe they will make an immediate impact.”
A native of Hatfield, Pennsylvania, Yancey graduated early from North Penn High and will join her sister, Kianna, this fall at WVU. Kianna signed with the Mountaineers in November 2018.
A four-year level 10 gymnast out of Montgomery County Sports Performance Center, Yancey is a two-time Junior Olympics National Championships qualifier who finished fifth on floor exercise and seventh on vault and uneven bars in 2017.
“We’re excited Kayla will join WVU gymnastics a year early and will experience her freshman season alongside her sister, Kianna,” Doak explained. “Kayla is a great athlete with a great air sense and high skill level on each event. We feel she can make an immediate impact on multiple lineups. Kayla’s personality will significantly contribute to the team’s chemistry. Her passion and desire for WVU and WVU gymnastics is unmatched.”
Most recently, Yancey earned three podium finishes at the 2018 Region 7 Level 10 Championships, winning the all-around and placing second on balance beam and floor exercise. She also finished fourth on uneven bars and fifth on vault. Prior to the regional championships, Yancey finished first in the all-around, second on vault, third on floor exercise and fourth on bars at the 2018 Pennsylvania Level 10 State Meet.
Yancey claimed the uneven bars title at the 2017 Region 7 Level 10 Championships, where she also finished second on floor exercise and fourth in the all-around. She also finished third on uneven bars and floor exercise at the 2017 Pennsylvania Level 10 State Championships.
Yancey shows career highs of 9.7 on floor exercise, 9.675 on vault and 9.625 on uneven bars. She is the daughter of William and Kori Yancey.
A two-year level 10 gymnast out of Rochester Gymnastics Academy, Kraus is a native of Fairport, New York, and a two-time Junior Olympics National Championships qualifier.
“Maya is a dynamic gymnast who should immediately impact our vault lineup,” Doak said. “She has the ability to perform a great vault while sticking her landings time and time again. Her gymnastics continues to improve as she gets older, and we are thrilled to help her maximize her abilities and impact multiple lineups. Maya’s sense of humor and the connection she has already established with the team make her a great fit for WVU.”
Kraus earned four top-10 finishes at the 2019 Level 10 Region 6 Championships, wining the vault title and placing fourth on floor exercise, sixth in the all-around and seventh on balance beam. She prepared for the championships with a winning showing on vault at the 2019 New York Level 10 State Championships, where she also placed seventh on floor exercise and 10th in the all-around and on uneven bars. Also in 2019, Kraus finished third on vault at the WOGA Classic/Liukin Invitational.
Last season, Kraus earned five top-10 finishes at the Region 6 Level 10 Championships, placing third on vault, fifth on floor exercise, seventh in the all-around, eighth on balance beam and 10th on uneven bars. She also captured the state vault title and finished third in the all-around and on vault and fifth on floor exercise.
(Press release via WVU Athletics)