Gymnasts hit season-high score at home invitational

 

Brianna Ellanson competes on the uneven bars during Saturday’s New Prague Invitational. She placed third with a 9.05. (Chuck Kajer Photo)

The New Prague Trojan gymnastics team scored a season-high 146.4 points to easily claim first place at the New Prague Invitational meet, held Saturday, Jan. 5.

The score easily eclipsed their previous season-high, set less than 24 hours earlier in a home loss to rival Northfield.

The Trojans (4-1, 1-1 Missota) are the top-ranked Class A team in the state, according to the most recent ratings released last week. They will return to action Friday, Jan. 11, when they host Chanhassen/Chaska at 6:30 p.m. New Prague travels to Farmington on Tuesday Jan. 15.

Raiders 144.825, Trojans 144.075 Competing for the first time in two weeks, the Trojans shook off any holiday rust they may have had by posting a season-high score of 144.075. However it wasn’t enough to overcome a strong performance from defending Missota Conference champion Northfield, who scored 144.825.

“We needed to have some good meets after the holiday break,” Coach Doug Amundsen said. “We still did not reach our goal of hitting 18 of 20 routines, hitting only 14, but all the routines looked better and cleaner.”

“We’re still missing Christine Simon and Jess Niedermeyer from our lineup, with Jess only performing on bars.”

The Trojans’ scores were solid, but a few points here and there proved costly against the Raiders.

Sara Hoffman had the Trojans’ only first-place finish, scoring 9.5 on the balance beam. She also placed third on the vault with a 9.425.

Jamie Niedermayer placed in two events, taking third on the floor exercise (9.25) and fourth on the vault (9.25). She also was fourth in the all-around (34.575).

Jess Niedermayer placed third on the bars in her only event (9.075), and Marissa Ekness placed fourth on the beam (9.05).

New Prague Invitational The Trojans hit on all cylinders at their home invitational Saturday, Jan. 5, scoring a season-high 146.4 points to easily outdistance second-place Mankato West.

“We hit on 17 of 20 routines, and we had some fantastic scores on vault and floor,” Amundsen said.

“I was not sure how the girls would perform the night after the Northfield meet, but they came back in the morning strong and ready to go. This should be a great confidence booster for the rest of the season.”

The Trojans dominated the meet, taking the top four spots in three of the four events.

In vault Sarah Hoffman had a 9.6, Jamie Niedermayer 9.4, and Bridget Ellanson and Meghan Dubanoski a 9.3. Dubanoski was competing for the Trojan JV. Also in the top 10 were Sydney Samson (6th, 9.2), and Ekness (10th, 8.85).

On bars, Jess Niedermayer scored 9.3, Jamie Niedermayer 9.15, Brianna Ellanson 9.05 and Bridget Ellanson 8.7. Also in the top 10 was Ashley Nerud (6th, 8.55).

The Trojans’ only struggles came on beam. Ekness won the event with a 9.15. Bridget Ellanson was third (9.05), Jamie Niedermayer fifth (8.5) and Hoffman 9th (8.3).

The Trojans rebounded with a spectacular showing on the floor, led by the Ellanson sisters. Bridget took first with a 9.6 and Brianna was second at 9.5. Hoffman was third at 9.35 and Jamie Niedermayer had a 9.25 to take fourth. McKenzie Deutsch was ninth with an 8.7.

The Trojans’ two entrants in the all-around took the top two spots. Bridget Ellanson had a 36.65 and Jamie Niedermeyer had a 36.3.

Besides Dubanoski’s score on vault, top JV performers for the Trojans were Cami Brod on bars and beam (both 7.65) and Alexis Solheid on floor (8.25). Brod scored a 31.5 on the all-around.

Team scores were: New Prague (146.4), Mankato West (129.85), Prior Lake (129.5), Stewartville (128.3), Hopkins (125.3), New Prague JV (123.65), Pine Island (117.8) and Mankato East (114.95).