January 27, 2011 at 9:30 a.m.
And for the second year in a row, St. Francis came out victorious in a battle of conference unbeatens.
The Wildcats briefly held a lead after the first event. Nicole Bean recorded an 8.550 for top honors in the vault, and she was followed very closely by Savanna Stendahl's 8.525. Alicia Sokol added an 8.400 and Reba Berg scored a 8.300 for a 33.775 in the first event for Chisago Lakes.
While the 'Cats were competing on the vault, the Saints were on the uneven bars. They got an 8.600 from on of their top gymnasts, but they didn't quite have the consistency that Chisago Lakes did, and the Wildcats led by four tenths of a point when St. Francis scored 33.325.
Things switched drastically, however, when the two teams switched events. The Wildcats struggled a hint on bars, as Stendahl was the only girl to score over eight points with an 8.275. Sam Thomsen scored a 7.950, Courtney Schlegel notched a 7.700 and Bean scored 7.650.
St. Francis really did their damage on vault, though, scoring a 34.175, headed by Autumn Lefever's 9.150.
The score put the Saints in the lead by just over two points.
They virtually put the meet away in the third event. The Saints scored a 34.950 on the floor exercise as Lefever once again went over nine points to lead them.
While they were ringing up nearly 35 points, the Wildcats were struggling on the balance beam, which has been a rough patch for them all year. Bean put together a phenomenal routine, scoring a personal best 8.625, but it wasn't enough. Thomsen scored a 7.900 and Stendahl and Betsy Howerton each scored 7.700's. The total tally for their event, though, was only 31.925. A good score for their standards, but not enough to keep up with St. Francis.
After the third event for each team, St. Francis held a five and a half point lead, and it would take a CL miracle or a SF disaster for the score to change that drastically in one event.
They did make up some ground on the floor exercise, but it just wasn't enough. Stendahl scored an 8.825, Sokol recorded an 8.325, Thomsen came in with an 8.250 and Bean rounded out the varsity scores with a 7.950.
The final tally for the meet was 135.300 for St. Francis and 130.625 from Chisago Lakes. It wasn't a bad showing by CL, but they needed to step their game up just a bit to compete with St. Francis. "Overall, the girls actually did a really good job," Head Coach Brett Kjos said. "St. Francis was just the better team."
Lefever won the all-around with a 34.875 and St. Francis's Sarah Schake earned second with a 33.650. Stendahl scored a 33.325, Bean had a 32.775 and Thomsen had a 32.050.