Negaunee claims all events, Esky wins dual

ESCANABA — The Escanaba gymnasts enjoyed the sweet taste of success Wednesday night, edging the Negaunee Miners 117.65-114.8 in a dual meet.

Negaunee won all four events, but Esky displayed enough depth to compensate.

The Eskymos secured their victory by taking 3-of-5 places in vault.

“This is a nice boost for the girls,” said Esky coach Theresa Pascoe. “It’s nice that we scored 117 points and all our varsity gymnasts got (regional) qualifying scores in vault. We have a hard working group which is willing to put in the extra time to get better. The girls are only going to move up to better scores.”

Negaunee’s Kylar Kellioinen won vault with 8.9 points and floor exercise (8.55) and May Waters took balance beam (8.7) and uneven bars (8.6).

“Vault and floor are probably my strong suit,” said Kallioinen, who was runner-up on beam (7.4). “It was kind of intimidating coming in here because they already had a meet in. I definitely had some butterflies on beam and floor. Beam is a hard event. All of them are hard.”

Waters led in all-around (34.1), followed by Kallioinen (32.15) and Esky’s Liz Sliva (29.9).

“We definitely had some nice individual efforts,” said Negaunee coach Eyre Becker. “We have a very young team. It will take some time for us to get to the level Escanaba is exhibiting. Escanaba is historically very strong in vault and we knew that coming in. I’m glad Theresa is back because she brings so much to the program.”

Sophomore Abbie Derouin placed second in vault (8.85) and shared the runner-up spot on bars with Kellioniemi (7.3) and freshmen Caitlyn Davenport and Natalie Monkevich tied for second on floor (8.5) for the Eskymos, who placed fourth in Saturday’s opener at Medford, Wis.

“Execution is the key,” said Derouin. “I’ve been doing vault for a long time. That’s the event I’m most comfortable with and tonight I had a strong run.”

Block placed third in vault (8.6) and Sliva was third on beam (7.1) and bars (6.9).

“Vault is my strongest event,” said Block. “I’m not as nervous in vault as in other events. It kind of helped to have a meet in before this. I wasn’t quite as nervous as I was at Medford. Although, with this being our first home meet, I was kind of nervous tonight, too.”

Esky freshman Haley Garcia was also thankful to have a meet under her belt.

“It helped to get a meet in before this,” she said. “That made tonight’s meet easier. I did gymnastics when I was younger, but you have to put more work into it on the varsity level.”

The teams meet again next Wednesday at Negaunee.

Esky’s gymnasts are then sponsoring a spaghetti feed Dec. 14 at 3 p.m., prior to the boys’ basketball tripleheader with Gladstone.

The summary:

All-around — 1, Waters, N, 34.1; 2, Kallioinen, N; 3, Sliva, E.

Floor exercise — 1, Kallioinen, N, 8.55; 2, Davenport and Monkevich, E (tie); 4, Waters, N; 5, Block, E.

Vault — 1, Kallioinen, N, 8.9; 2, Derouin, E; 3, Block, E; 4, Waters, N; 5, Monkevich, E.

Balance beam — 1, Waters. N, 8.7; 2, Kelloinen, N; 3, Sliva, E; 4, Clark, E and Carlson, N (tie).

Uneven bars — 1, Waters, N, 8.6; 2, Kelloinen, N and Derouin, E (tie); 4, Sliva, E; 5, Block, E