MADISON — An all-around team performance vaulted the Sun Prairie gymnastics team to a 129.9120 to 12.5370 Big Eight Conference dual victory over host Madison East/La Follette Thursday night.
“We are very excited to add another win against United Gymnastics,” Sun Prairie head coach Shannon Maly said. “We learned on the way to the meet we would only have three judges for the evening — two judges for varsity and one for JV — this can sometimes cause gymnasts to get a little frazzled due to the changes in rotation that they prepared for. (But) overall, both the JV and varsity teams did well with this and it was a good meet to have it happen.
“In the future, we will be better prepared.”
The Cardinals took the top three all-around positions, led by Amelia McDermott’s meet-best score of 34.250. The senior standout earned just one first-place finish, scoring a 9.025 on the floor exercise, but added runner-up performances on the vault (8.525) and uneven bars (8.450). McDermott finished third on the balance beam (8.250).
Junior Ellie Studier was second with an all-around total of 31.462, while freshman Martha Guelker finished third (30.875).
Sun Prairie shined on the vault taking the top four spots. Guelker took first with an 8.6, McDermott followed with an 8.525, senior Dani Johnson was third with an 8.2 and Studier finished fourth with an 8.150.
“Dani Johnston returned to competition tonight after an injury back in December that derailed her from competing. We are gradually working her back into the roster and was happy that we could include her today on vault,” said Maly about Johnston, who set a personal-best mark with the 8.2 score.
Led by personal bests by Studier and junior Sam Schumann the Cardinals took the top five spots on the floor exercise. As mentioned McDermott took first, followed by Guelker (8.7), Studier (8.550), sophomore Taylor Smith (8.3) and Schumann (8.175).
“Ellie Studier had a really clean routine, she is also building confidence in her routine and we are hopeful that she will be adding a few new skills into her routine soon,” said Maly. “Sam Schuman also had a great night on her favorite event, she is consistently improving each meet and we are excited to know there is more in store for her routine.”
Sophomore Natalie Figueroa (7.425) and Guelker (7.275 — personal best) followed McDermott with third and fourth-place finishes on the uneven bars.
“We showed a lot of growth on this event. Amelia McDermott added a new skill into her routine tonight, she upgraded her layout dismount which is currently a high superior to a double-back dismount which adds .2 bonus (advanced High Superior). We did take a skill out of her routine tonight to allow for her to potentially do the dismount. During practice this week the focus is work repetitions to include both skills,” Maly said. “Natalia Figueroa is also back tonight after an extended vacation and showed a solid performance.”
Sun Prairie had had three out of five gymnasts on the balance beam with no-fall routines — Smith, McDermott and Schumann. Smith finished second (8.275), McDermott was third (8.250) and Studier placed fourth (7.812.)
“Many times it’s great and scores are usually much higher, however, we lost a lot of connections and counted many form breaks, wobbles, which impacted the final scores for everyone. Executional errors can add up fast and impact greatly on your final score. This is a big area we will be working on this week,” said Maly.
Freshman Jaeli Murray had a solid night competing winning JV all-around for the Cardinals.
“Each meet her confidence is growing and we are starting to see more and more from her,” said Maly.
Murray won the vault with a personal best of 8.20. bars (7.0) and beam with (7.3), and placed second on floor with a score of 7.40 behind teammate Carly Gross who had a 7.60.
“This team has a lot of potential and we don’t want to peak too early in the season and to stay healthy. We have less invites this month, which will allow for rest. Focus for next week is to continue to work on consistency and to hopefully add more upgrades,” said Maly.
Sun Prairie will remain on the road for its next Big Eight dual meet traveling to Janesville Craig on Thursday.
Competition begins at 7 p.m.
SUN PRAIRIE 129.912
EAST/LA FOLLETTE 112.55
Vault: 1. Guelker, SP, 8.6; 2. McDermott, SP, 8.525; 3. Johnston, SP, 8.2; 4. Studier, SP, 8.150.
Balance beam: 1. Bender, MEL, 8.8; 2. Smith, SP, 8.275; 3. McDermott, SP, 8.250; 4. Studier, SP, 7.812.
Uneven bars: 1. Bender, MEL, 8.150; 2. McDermott, 8.450; 3. Figueroa, SP, 7.425; 4. Guelker, SP, 7.275.
Floor exercise: 1. McDermott, SP, 9.025; 2. Guelker, SP, 8.7; 3. Studier, SP, 8.550; 4. Smith, SP, 8.3.
All-around: 1. McDermott, 34.250; 2. Studier, SP, 31.462; 3. Guelker, SP, 30.875; 4. Webber, MEL, 30.287; 5. Burker, MEL, 26.950.