Local Athletes Excel on National Level
SARATOGA SPRINGS — A number of kids from our area are making a name for themselves in the world of Ninja Warrior competitions. One will appear on the reality TV show American Ninja Warrior Jr., and five others will head to the National Ninja League World Finals. Ollie Huss, a fourth grader from Saratoga Springs, is a local TV star now. Huss will be featured in the inaugural season of American Ninja Warrior Jr., airing Saturdays at 7 p.m. on Universal Kids.
On how he was chosen, Huss said this: “they asked a certain amount of people to submit a video to cast on the show and if they got picked, they got a call back telling them they were on the show. The call back for me to be on the show felt really good. Especially knowing that this is something I’ve been dedicating my entire life to,” said the 9-year-old.
Huss and his family traveled to Los Angeles for three days, so he could compete for the show.
“I liked LA, it was really hot there,” he said.
Huss says his best ninja skills come from his upper-body strength. He wants to improve his balance, though.
“I’m trying to balance on skinnier ledges to help me improve,” he explained.
Huss practices daily for three to four hours. He also enjoys competitive climbing, playing the piano, and skiing.
“I’m really good at skiing,” he stated.
Huss has decided he wants to be a national climber when he grows up. continued from front page...
“When I first saw American Ninja Warrior, everyone that did it usually had a background of gymnastics and climbing… I’ve done gymnastics, I wasn’t exactly the best at it,” he laughed, “but it was fun to try.”
Huss said that seeing himself on tv is “hard to believe.”
Saratoga Ninja Lab has five athletes qualified for the National Ninja League World Finals this February in Connecticut; Keegan Daly and Rya Torres both took first place their divisions at Action Athletics National Ninja League Competition. Georgia Boggs also placed in her division; Joey Barr also qualified for finals; and Leah Torres powered through her run after a small stumble early on.
“I’m just so incredibly proud of them,” said coach Randi Cowper.
“These kids have been training here since we opened, they came to summer camp and we knew when we were talking about a ninja team that these guys and girls definitely had to be a part of it. They work so hard and it shows in their training,” Cowper continued.
So far, the Saratoga Ninja Lab has had five kids compete in two different competitions and four of the five competitors have qualified for the world finals.
“That’s unheard of, and I know we’re going to have more as the season goes on,” Cowper stated.