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Unselfish leader: Mock sets aside individual goals for team success

“Masy has always been about team No. 1 and only team,” Mitchell coach Audra Rew said. “Masy is willing to sacrifice anything individual as long as it means team success.”

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Mitchell High School senior Masy Mock poses for a photo at MEGA gymnastics earlier this week.

It’s not easy balancing on a beam or sinking a long putt, but Masy Mock can do both.

While gymnastics and golf dual sport athletes are rare, Mock is the exception and she said the two sports go hand-in-hand. Mock said the hardest part of both sports is staying mentally sharp and they physically complement each other.

“I think with gymnastics, the strength and flexibility really helps with golf,” said Mock, who is a Mitchell High School senior gymnast. “With golf, the mental part of gymnastics where going into it, you know you have to be confident, and it helps with golf, too.”

It’s helped her shine in both sports. Mock’s junior golf season was taken away due to COVID, but she posted a third-place finish in the Class AA tournament in 2019.

In gymnastics, she’s been a key contributor to the powerhouse Kernels. Even if she goes unnoticed at times.

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“Masy has always been about team No. 1 and only team,” Mitchell coach Audra Rew said. “Masy is willing to sacrifice anything individual as long as it means team success.”

Rew said Mock comes to practice and meets with the same positive attitude, while always encouraging those around her.

“She was the first one cheering them on loud and proud that the Mitchell Kernels are going to come out on top because of what she’s doing,” Rew added.

That is what makes Mock, who is Mitchell’s lone senior, the ultimate Kernel teammate.

“It’s obviously hard, because when you know you can do it, you want to be out there doing it,” Mock said. “But it’s nice seeing other girls get that and the team benefitting from that.”

Mocks finds her own calling

Mock has been a staple in the MEGA and Mitchell High School gymnastics programs for several years. Rew began coaching Mock when she was 5-years-old and said her natural gymnastics skills were evident immediately.

“Masy has those long legs and she’s flexible,” said Rew about the 5-foot-8 Mock. “You either have these flexible gymnasts that can do oversplits and their back is bending crazy ways, or you have the powerhouse gymnasts. You kind of have two different styles. Masy was definitely the flexible one.”

But she didn’t come from a gymnastics background. Mock’s mother, Stacy, didn’t compete in gymnastics and instead played high school basketball. Mock’s father, Craig, was a former Mitchell assistant boys basketball coach and brother, Sam, played hoops for the Kernels.

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Mock bucked the family trend.

“They tried to get me to do basketball,” Masy laughed.

She played volleyball in middle school and lasted on the basketball court until her sixth-grade season. The following season she fully committed herself to gymnastics in the winter.

“It was pretty cool that nobody in my family knew anything about gymnastics and then I picked it up,” Mock added.

Mock’s favorite events are beam and floor. Mock’s stature lends itself to both events and Rew uses words like gorgeous and graceful to describe her in both events.

“Masy would always have something a little bit more graceful in her floor routine,” Rew said. “It was so beautiful to watch and she kind of has some signature moves on floor.”

The future

Mock’s time as a competitive gymnast is coming to an end. She’ll play golf next season at Augustana University, which is where Sam is currently a senior golfer. A 4.0 student, Mock is leaning toward majoring in communication disorders.

Mock and the Kernels will compete at today’s Eastern South Dakota Conference meet in Huron.

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They’ll then gear up for the state gymnastics meet on Feb. 13 in Watertown.

The Kernels have finished as state runner-ups the past two seasons, but are the favorites this season.

Mock said she’ll miss the camaraderie and relationships built in gymnastics. But she’s enjoying the finish as the Kernels eye their fifth state championship since 2014.

“I am probably sad that it’s over,” Mock said. “Because it’s not a sport you can come back and do again when you are older. I am sad to miss the girls, but hopefully it will go out with a good ending.”

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