Watertown gymnasts edged out by Monona Grove
MADISON — Watertown‘s gymnastics team lost to host Monona Grove 127.42-126.75 in a Badger Conference dual meet at Madison Turners on Friday.
The Goslings started on the uneven bars and scored 30.45 points.
Sophomore Ashley Campbell scored 6.95 and had a nice half turn on the low bar.
Junior Morgan Ellsworth scored 7.1 and had straight lines on her kips.
Junior Mia Ashenfelter scored 7.5.
“She got her uprises this week but focused on a solid, clean routine today,” Watertown co-gymnastics coach Jenna Wendt said.
Freshman Meghan Hurtgen scored 7.87 to take third place.
“She got rid of her stop on the low bar and it paid off, now she’s just working on her form on her giants,” Wendt said.
Sophomore Lauren Marks scored 7.97 to finish in first place with a solid bar routine.
“I am so proud of the dedication she has put into her bar routine and can’t wait to see what else she can do this year,” Wendt said.
“Overall, we started strong on bars as a team with no stops and flowing routines. We keep working to add our high level skills, release moves and a handstand position within our routines. It’s nice to see our team bar scores at a 30 in December so I hope to keep it going up and hit 31 in January.”
Watertown moved to the vault and scored 32.07.
Sophomore Rachael Sprenger and Ellsworth each scored 7.8 and completed a half on half off vault.
Hurtgen scored 8.3 to claim second with a half on half off vault.
Freshman Lauryn Olson scored 8.1 with a half on handspring full off vault.
Junior Julie Walter scored 7.0.
“She had half on half off vault and/or half on handspring full off vault,” Wendt said.
“It was just one of those days where (co-head coach Paula Mandel) and I had no idea what the judges were looking for as the scores were much lower than usual. We could tell the parents/crowd was as frustrated as we were with super inconsistent scores but we all know it’s just part of the sport and we will work on our form and execution.”
Watertown moved to the floor exercise and scored 32.15.
Marks scored 6.7.
“She had a lot of personality in her dance tonight, she stumbled a tad towards the end but the judges really had fun watching her routine,” Wendt said.
Olson scored 7.1 and will continue to clean up her landings and jump connections to better that mark.
“She has been struggling with her front full in her opening pass all week and she made it in competition so she was all smiles,” Wendt said. “She also just learned a back layout full and put that in as her second pass to increase her difficulty and we are very proud of her for being able to throw both of them this early in the season.”
Ashenfelter scored 8.1.
“She had the cleanest opening pass that she has done all year with a beautiful back layout full,” Wendt said. “She stumbled a bit on her jumps but was smiling during her floor routine which made it so much fun to watch.”
Hurtgen scored 8.45 to claim third.
“She opened very strong with a super high and clean layout one and a half but stumbled a bit on her jump connections and middle pass,” Wendt said.
Ellsworth scored 8.5 to take second place.
“She fell out of her back full a little on her opening pass but then finished very strong with huge jumps and leap connections,” Wendt said.
“Our floor routines were so much fun to watch tonight. We had our ‘Watertown floor routine game faces’ on where all the girls were smiling, cheering loudly and showing off their dance moves. When they all show off their skills that’s when they are the most fun to watch.”
The Goslings moved to the balance beam and scored 32.07.
Karleigh Jacobs made her varsity beam debut and scored 7.2.
“She has been working so hard and just got her roundoff/flight requirement and put it in and I am very proud of her,” Wendt said. “She gets the most height in her jumps and is always so fun to watch on beam as she smiles the whole time and finishes every skill.”
Marks scored 7.55 and completed her routine without a fall.
“She held back a little on her switch leap but she is becoming more and more confident and consistent with her jumps/leaps,” Wendt said. “She is also working to add in her flight skill and another advanced high jump.”
Ashenfelter scored 6.75 and has been working hard to put her roundoff back tuck dismount in.
“Due to her ankle injuries from the last two years she’s been hesitant about certain skills and this is one of them, but she went all out, missed one foot on her dismount but was still able to flip over,” Wendt said. “I’m very proud of her going for these skills and the more she throws them, the more conformable she will be.”
Hurtgen took second with a score of 8.45.
“Meghan’s connections are also stacked and she has huge flight on her jumps/leaps, and her back handspring series to her full twist dismount is very impressive and the judges love it, which is why she scores so high even with a fall,” Wendt said. “When she sticks it all she is also sure to have a 9 and I hope to see both Meghan and Morgan on the podium together.”
Ellsworth took first with a personal best score of 8.87.
“She added her back handspring series on beam and executed it without a flaw,” Wendt said. “Her jumps are huge and her connections are stacked, the only thing she is missing is a twisting dismount which is sure to come soon as she will have that 9 and be fighting for a spot on the podium at sectionals to go to state. I’m very proud of Morgan’s performance tonight.”
“We ended on beam and our beam rocked today. I am super thrilled with our overall performance and the girls should be too. We all did great, several of them threw some new skills or added a new connection and I’m so happy for them all.”
In the all-around competition, Hurtgen took first with a season-best score of 33.15 and Ellsworth was second with a season-best score of 32.27.
Watertown’s JV lost to Monona Grove 105.6-103.7.
Watertown next competes at the Mount Horeb Invitational on Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019.