We have a modest winner on our hands! Xochitl Gomez just won Season 32 of Dancing with the Stars. Despite her perfect scores and her career connections to Disney, she actually admitted she was surprised to go all the way.
The 17-year-old Marvel actress and her pro partner, Val Chmerkovskiy, out-danced Ariana Madix, Jason Mraz, Alyson Hannigan, and Charity Lawson to take home the Mirrorball Trophy in this week’s finale. Now, she’s opening up about her journey to the grand prize and how it still feels surreal to have snatched the gold.
A word from our winner
Surprisingly, Xochitl revealed that she didn’t enter the competition with much faith in her dancing skills. She said she never expected to make it to the finale.
“It’s unbelievable,” she told PEOPLE. “I didn’t see it coming. I went into this whole competition thing thinking, you know, if I make it to week five, that’d be awesome, and so to be here and to have this trophy is just crazy. I’m really proud of us.”
For Val, this was his third time winning the competition. So, reveling in a victory isn’t new to him. But, he described a bittersweet feeling knowing that another year of DWTS has come to an end.
“It’s a little weird, you know, because you put so much work into something and then it’s like here’s a trophy and then it’s over,” the pro dancer shared. “The feeling is, obviously pride and joy for ourselves, but also a little bit of sadness that it’s over.”
A special thanks to Jenna Johnson
When chatting about their victory, Val and Xochitl also threw some kudos toward Val’s wife, Jenna Johnson. She was paired up with Tyson Beckford this season, and they got eliminated during the third week. After her early exit, Jenna shifted her focus to supporting Val and Xochitl. The dance partners revealed that Jenna was working behind the scenes helping them with choreography and some good, old-fashioned encouragement.
“Jenna really helped me and said really wonderful encouraging words,” Xochitl revealed. “I’m just really lucky to have had a partner whose wife is so nice. She was so supportive of me and it takes a person to allow me to be so close with, you know, their family and she’s really allowed me to be close with her family, and I really appreciate that and hopefully, I can continue to be part of their little circle.”
So, what’s next for the DWTS champ? She said that she has a spot on her dresser where she’s going to put her trophy. She said she’s going to cuddle with her cat, lay in bed and just stare at that trophy. Soak it up, Xochitl!
Dancing with the Stars Season 32 is streaming in full on Disney+.
TELL US – WERE YOU SURPRISED THAT XOCHITL WON DWTS SEASON 32? WHO WERE YOU ROOTING FOR?