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Posted by Guest (jmillea@mshsl.org) - Updated 2/25/2012 12:25:12 AM

By Luke Sleeper
John’s Journal Correspondent

Roseville’s gymnastics program is no stranger to the Class 2A championship podium. The Raiders captured gold medals annually from 2006 to 2009. Northfield took the championship crown from Roseville in 2010 and again in 2011 and had been considered the favorite all season long to win the state meet once again in 2012.

And it seemed as though Northfield was on its way to another gold medal throughout Friday night’s 2A team championships at the University of Minnesota Sports Pavilion. Roseville’s 16-0 record was somewhat under the radar heading into the meet and the Raiders quietly put together a championship performance on Friday.

Depth is an important element to any gymnastics state champion, something that Roseville displayed in full effect Friday. High scores from Katie Quigley, Carly Wagner, Jessica and Kaylee Strecker, and Emily Van Krevelen led to the Raiders’ 149.325 winning score. Roseville won both the uneven bars and balance beam events, while taking second place in the floor exercise.

Silver medal-winning Northfield put on a performance that would be championship worthy almost any other year. Three gymnasts shined for Northfield: Bailey DuPay, Sveta Mason and Meaghan Howell. The Raiders seemed to be in control of the meet after DuPay and Mason put up back-to-back high scores of 9.8 and 9.75 on the uneven bars during the fifth rotation. Howell’s 9.7 score on the balance beam was the highest given to any competitor in that event. Northfield finished with an overall score of 149.15.

St. Cloud Tech edged out Park for third place, finishing ahead by just .175 points. Park junior Kasondra Tulloch earned the loudest cheers for her performances; after she scored a 9.725 on the floor exercise and a 9.75 on the uneven bars, the impressively large Park student section roared its approval.

Tulloch, along with Ashley Meyers of Lakeville North, Allie Ryan of Minnetonka, Mariah Miller of St. Cloud Tech and Britta Rudd of Cambridge-Isanti, will have the chance to duplicate their great Friday individual performances Saturday night at the all-around championships.

Four members of Roseville’s state championship team will also be participating in the individual portion of the state meet.
Friday night’s championship was the fifth in Roseville history and the first since their four-time championship run in the late 2000s. Roseville’s young roster suggests that these Raiders could be in for another streak of championships.

--Luke Sleeper is a journalism student at the University of Minnesota.


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