MEDFORD-COLBYGYMNASTICS - Gymnasts clip Point, a strong second in opener
As they hoped and expected, the Medford- Colby gymnastics co-op has gotten its 2023-24 season off to a solid start in its first two meets.
On Tuesday, the Raiders got their first Great Northern Conference win of the season, taking a Large Division dual at Stevens Point 128.45-126.825.
Freshman Raylin Rothmeier was the night’s top all-around gymnast and won the floor exercise. Kyla Krause and Delaina Meyer added wins on the balance beam and vault and the Raiders scored well enough on the bars to complete the team victory.
The team’s vault performance was impressive as the Raiders scored 33.45 points and that was without their best vaulter, Krause, who was limited to two events as she works through an ankle sprain.
Meyer’s 8.55 won it, just ahead of Rothmeier’s 8.5. Veronica Mateer took fourth at 8.35, just behind Panther Nora Wrobleski’s 8.4. Raider senior Ellison Carbaugh got into the 8s with her 8.05, good for eighth place and senior Kaileigh Mientke was ninth with her 7.95.
Krause won the beam with Medford’s highest score of the night in any event, an 8.7. Stevens Point’s Chloe Gresl took second at 8.55. Shayla Radlinger took a big jump from Saturday’s meet, taking third with an 8.25 and Rothmeier was fourth at 8.2. Mateer improved to 7.75, good for seventh and Meyer was eighth at 7.45. The Raiders scored 32.9 points on the beam, much improved over Saturday’s 30.725.
Rothmeier’s win on the floor came with a score of 8.4, up significantly over the Raiders’ first meet. After Gresl’s 8.2, Mateer took third with a solid 8.1, Radlinger was fourth at 8.05 and Meyer was eighth with her 7.35.
Medford scored 30.2 points on the bars, led by Krause’s 8.2, which was good for second behind Gresl’s 8.25. Panther Kannitha Xiong was third at 7.65, but Radlinger and Meyer were right behind her with 7.5s. Rothmeier was eighth at 7.0 and Mateer was close behind with her 6.95.
Rothmeier totaled 32.1 points for the night to edge Xiong (31.675) and win the all-around competition. Mateer was third with 31.15 points and Meyer was fourth with 30.85 points in the meet.
Stevens Point won the JV meet by the slimmest of margins 56.85-56.8.
Raider Bridget Cloud won two events in her first meet of the season, taking the balance beam with an 8.3 and the bars with a 7.0. Medford scored 30.05 of its points on beam. Mientke was third at 7.55, Lindsey Kauffman was fourth at 7.4 and Carbaugh was fifth with her 6.8.
Radlinger won the vault with an 8.15 with Kauffman taking fourth at 7.4. Kauffman added a 4.2 on the bars.
Medford-Colby returns to competition Saturday by taking part in the Rhinelander Hodags’ annual Hodag Invitational. The meet starts at 10 a.m. at the YMCA of the Northwoods.
2nd in home meet
Medford-Colby started the season Saturday with a strong effort in its five-team Hot Cocoa Invitational at Medford Area Elementary School.
The Raiders placed second with 125.825 points, trailing GNC Large Division rival Marshfield (131.025). Medford just got by Rice Lake (125.0) for the second spot. Tomah (106.75) and Mosinee (95.925) rounded out the field.
With Krause out, save for her opening routine on bars, the meet gave others a chance to shine.
Rothmeier led the Raiders with a sixthplace finish all-around (31.975) in her first varsity meet. The highlight for her was a beautiful first balance beam routine that earned an 8.425 from the judges, good for second place behind Marshfield’s Abby Pietsch (8.75) and ahead of Rice Lake’s Avery Ash (8.325), who finished second on beam at last year’s WIAA state individual championship.
“Raylin is very explosive, has great dynamics and yet does things so they look easy, which is what we are told to do as gymnasts,” Raiders’ head coach Andrée Brushaber said. “She is going to have a strong career in the sport.”
Meyer had a strong meet, led by her second-place finish on the vault with an 8.5. She wasn’t far behind Ash (8.8) in that event. Rothmeier and Mateer tied for seventh place with 8.15s, while Mientke and Carbaugh tied for ninth with 8.0s. Vault was the team’s highest-scoring event of the day at 32.8 points.
“I was very happy with that event,” Brushaber said. “We had clean lines and some great pre- and post-flight in our vaults.”
Meyer also led the Raiders in the floor exercise, where the team scored 32.0 points. Meyer earned an 8.075 to take fifth, while Mateer (8.025) and Radlinger (8.025) were sixth and seventh and Rothmeier was ninth at 7.85. Ash won with her score of 8.95, just ahead of Pietsch (8.8).
“Floor was so exciting for us,” Brushaber said. “We had a few near misses but that is to be expected when we get our first chance at doing routines on a full floor. I am really proud of their showmanship starting to emerge. They are getting comfortable in their routines. We just need to fine tune things and maybe mix up or change a couple things.”
Medford-Colby started the meet on the uneven bars and came away with a solid team score of 30.3 with everyone scoring 6.9 or better. Mateer led the Raiders by tying Marshfield’s Alyvia Dietsche for sixth at 7.65. Rothmeier, Radlinger and Krause all got 7.55s to tie for eighth and Meyer was 12th with her 6.9. Marshfield’s Solenne Lonsdale won the bars with an 8.3, just ahead of Ash (8.25).
“I think it is a great sign of what is to come for January,” Brushaber said of the team’s bars scores. “We need to connect things, fix some minor details and we will be even stronger in the weeks to come. Fine tuning and connections being there are really important. Deductions for those really can add up.”
Outside of Rothmeier’s finish, it wasn’t the best of starts on beam and that’s where Brushaber said the team definitely has to work out some jitters. Meyer was 11th at 7.725, Radlinger was 13th at 7.425, Mateer was 14th at 7.35 and Mientke was 16th at 7.125.
Meyer and Mateer tied for eighth in the all-around standings with 31.2 total points.
“Veronica is so cool under pressure and just showed me that she is able to shake off mistakes and focus on the next skill,” Brushaber said. “She is a very calming and mature young lady and balances us out even if she does not realize her impact that way. Delaina was our strongest on floor and our second strongest on beam for Saturday. I know she has more in the tank to dazzle us.”
In JV events, Carbaugh led the Raiders with a second-place score of 7.65 on the balance beam while Kauffman was third at 7.5. Kauffman also tied for fourth on the bars with a 5.7 and was seventh on the vault at 7.0. Radlinger had the thirdbest vault score at 8.0.
With two more home meets yet to come in January, Brushaber said the team would welcome any help it can get in moving equipment the day before those meets, the Senior Night and Parents Night meet with Marshfield on Jan. 11 and the Youth Night meet with Antigo and Mosinee on Jan. 23.
“We could use some help with that indeed,” Brushaber said. “I would hate for a gymnast to get hurt moving equipment right before a meet. We move equipment Jan. 10 and Jan. 22. If anyone in the community has a large enclosed trailer with a cleaner bottom, we would greatly appreciate it if they would haul one load. We currently have to make three trips so one load would be very helpful as then we could just load and go.”