|2/7/2013 11:11:00 AM|
Wildcats dump Irondale, cheering for NB
By JEFF NORTON
It’s not often that Chisago Lakes will be cheering for county rival North Branch, but earlier this week, the Wildcats gymnastics team was pulling for the Vikings to upset the St. Francis Saints after CL took care of business against Irondale.
After the Wildcats beat Irondale, they then had to hope North Branch upset St. Francis so it would send the schools into a three way tie for first place. St. Francis had beaten Chisago Lakes already and the Wildcats had beaten a short-handed Viking team earlier this season, creating the potential logjam. The Vikings narrowly missed the upset, however, losing 133.5625-133.35, sending the Saints to their fifth consecutive NSC title, Chisago to second place and North Branch to third place.
Chisago Lakes 126.800, Irondale 119.600
Chisago Lakes used their typical strategy to beat the up-and-coming Knights: A wonderful performance from senior Sam Thomsen and plenty of strong individual efforts behind her. Thomsen led the ‘Cats on the vault, the uneven bars, the balance beam and the floor exercise and scored a 33.850 in the all around. The Wildcats really made their big moves on the uneven bars and the floor exercise. CL got a 7.950 from Thomsen on the bars and a 7.700 from Nicole Bean to lead the way and they scored a 29.325 while Irondale only scored 25.600. They only had one gymnast over 6.200 in the event. On the floor exercise, scores of eight or better from Thomsen, Bean and Alicia Sokol propelled the Wildcats to a 33.375, their second highest score of the night. Irondale only scored a 30.750 on their turn on the floor. The other two events were evenly contested between the two squads. Chisago Lakes got four scores of 8.300 or better on the vault.
Thomsen had an 8.550, Sokol had an 8.500, Courtney Schlegel scored an 8.325 and Betsy Howerton scored an 8.300. The balance beam again proved to be tough for some of the girls. Thomsen registered an 8.600 to lead the way and Howerton scored a 7.800. Sokol posted a respectable 7.475, but nobody else could break the 6.6 barrier en route to a team score of 30.425 in the event. Jordana Brady of Irondale won the all-around with a tally of 34.650 and Thomsen was second with her 33.850. “We did well on the vault and the floor, but not so well on our bars and beam,” Head Coach Brett Kjos said after the meet.
“The skills are there, we just need to clean them up and execute them a little better.” The Wildcats are in the midst of a two week break before sections on Tuesday, Feb. 12, but they have been grinding away at the routines they’ve recently implemented to get them perfect for sections. “With many practices coming up, these routines will slowly become better and better,” Kjos said excitedly with the postseason on the horizon. “Just in time for the section meet!”