His former gym teacher at St. Agnes, Trish Armstrong, recalled how he excelled at the variety of sports she introduced to the class, though gymnastics was not among those offerings.

More than that, Armstrong recalled how devoted he was to his fitness.

"I could tell by the way he took his running seriously that he was into being fit," Armstrong said, recalling how Kreft would set his watch to time himself in events.

"I never thought it would lead to this," she said. "That's pretty good."


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Kreft said he played a variety of sports through elementary, middle and high school, including swimming and soccer.

When he entered the University of Maryland after graduating from Loyola in 2009, he found himself in unfamiliar territory regarding physical activity.

His freshman year was his first year without structured athletics and he found he missed the structure and activities.

"When I started college, joining an exhibition gymnastics team wasn't on my to-do list," Kreft said.

The gymkana welcomes people of all skill levels, Kreft said.

Despite his status as a beginner during his sophomore year, in only a few months he was performing handsprings off a vault.

"It doesn't sound like a lot (of time), but really, once you get there, everyone's really helpful," Kreft said. "All it takes is the willingness and motivation to ask someone."