January 27, 2011 in Sports

U-Hi captures GSL gymnastics crown

Justin Chartrey The Spokesman-Review
 

Dueling against fellow unbeaten Mead for the Greater Spokane League regular-season title, the University gymnastics team needed to lean on its four seniors to get the job done.

And with three of the four finishing in the top five in the all-around scoring Wednesday, the Titans got just the performance from their leaders they were looking for, scoring 172.15 points to beat Mead by three points in a GSL season finale at U-Hi.

Winning the all-around title was Mt. Spokane’s Courtney Bray with 37.025 points. Alana Norman took second with 36.7 for Shadle Park.

“I feel like as a team we did really great,” said U-Hi senior Stacie Davis, who scored a season-best 9.575 in her winning routine on the balance beam. “Personally I biffed it on the floor (exercise), and I always seem to do something ridiculous, but we stepped it up as a team tonight. Our coaches pushed us to our limits and we did awesome.”

Along with Davis winning the beam, the Titans also had a winning performance from senior Kaleigh Campbell in the floor event, as she scored a 9.5 to edge out Norman (9.475).

It was a career best for Campbell, who battled injury in her junior season to finish well in her senior year.

“Kaleigh had, by far, her highest score ever on the floor,” U-Hi coach Tracy Duncan said. “And her 8.65 on bar was also a career high for her. She had a really good day.”

The win for the Titans moved them ahead of Mead for the GSL title and also prepares them for the regional meet in two weeks in the Tri-Cities. Duncan expects the Titans to get stiff competition from Kamiakin for the lone ticket to state, projecting the regional title could come down to as few as two points.

With U-Hi aiming to earn a spot at the state meet at the 3A level, the Mead Panthers will be looking to do the same at 4A.

In the season finale, the Panthers were led Kendra Sherman and Cadie Pratt, who finished sixth and seventh in the all-around scoring. Pratt, the Panthers’ season-long leader, recovered from a 8.25 on the beam to score 8.8 or higher on her last three events, topping the 9.0 mark twice.

“If we continue to improve, we should have enough to qualify for state,” Mead coach Laurie Chadwick said. “It’s a good year for U-Hi to move to 3A.”


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