The sophomore was recently named SEC Gymnast of the Week, the first gymnast for Auburn to receive the award this year.
“It’s an awesome feeling for Auburn to be recognized and for me to be recognized,” Sandusky said.
When Sandusky was younger and growing up in Brookeville, Md., she played on the monkey bars often.
Her mother put her into a gym to try and get her to learn safety skills. Sandusky said the coaches kept pushing her to get involved with the gymnastics program.
After a while, Sandusky grew tired of the sport and said she thought about quitting often in middle school.
“I would get to a point where I had a rough day, I didn’t want to go to the gym, I thought about quitting, but my mom was always there to help me and she pushed me forward and was always there for me,” Sandusky said.
In her freshman year, exactly a year before winning her current honor, Sandusky was named SEC Freshman Gymnast of the Week.
Currently, Sandusky leads the team in vault, uneven bars and the beam.
She also ranks in the top-50 nationally on those apparatuses.
Associate head coach Rachelle Thompson said she calls Sandusky the team’s cruise control.
“She has a way about her that she can just hit a button and go out there and do and compete,” Thompson said. “This year she has really grown and has been hitting her routines in practice, giving her even more confidence in the meet.”
Thompson said the coaches are hesitant to put her on the floor exercise because of how valuable she is in other events.
Getting from Maryland to Alabama may sound like a big jump for some, but Sandusky said she always wanted to go to college in the South.
“Being part of a team in the SEC is awesome,” she said. “Auburn had a great program for education and gymnastics and I really liked the coaches when I met them.”
As a member of the gymnastics team, Sandusky is around 18 other women daily. While other women might find this stressful, Thompson said Sandusky gets along well with everyone. “She truly does just fit in wherever she is,” Thompson said. “Everyone just likes Allyson.”
Sandusky said she feels like the team has grown closer this season.
“Last year we had some cliques on our team, but this year we are a happy family,” Sandusky said.
Looking into the future, Sandusky isn’t sure about what she will do. She said she hopes to get a job and be able to make some money.
She said she might coach gymnastics as a volunteer, but couldn’t see making that her career.
Sandusky had her best meet in the historic win against Georgia three weeks ago. That night, she hit a 9.85 on vault, a 9.8 on bars and finished out with a 9.825 on beam. “I’m not going to say she was a surprise, because we recognized early on how much of a competitor she was,” Thompson said. “I really expect her to continue to develop and get better and better at her routines.”