Esky gymnasts top Miners in 1st home meet

Justin St. Ours | Daily Press Escanaba’s Abbie Derouin performs on the uneven bars during a meet against Negaunee Wednesday at Escanaba.

ESCANABA — The Escanaba gymnasts have their sights set on reaching the team regional meet in early March.

They moved a step closer to their goal here Wednesday night in a 123.65-95.6 triumph over the Negaunee Miners.

The Eskymos, who need at least 120 points in three more meets to qualify, showed plenty of balance across the board by taking four of the top five places in the all-around standings and 4-of-5 spots in three events.

“The girls are getting stronger,” said Esky coach Theresa Pascoe. “Our feeder program is what’s helping our varsity team stay strong.”

Esky junior Abbie Derouin took second in all-around with 32.65 points. She won vault (8.9) and uneven bars (8.3), shared the runner-up spot with teammates Maddy Block and Caitlyn Davenport in floor exercise (8.2) and placed third on balance beam (7.25).

“This was one of my better vaults,” said Derouin. “I went over nine (points) last year, but I feel stronger and more confident this year. I love beam and tonight my score was higher than in the two previous meets. I remembered my routines in floor this time.

“This is our first qualifying score as a team. We worked hard for this and we’re very excited. We just want to keep getting better.”

Negaunee senior May Waters gained top honors in all-around (33.7), floor (9.05) and beam (8.65).

“This was our first meet of the season,” said Negaunee coach Eyre Becker.

“We’re still trying to fill out our roster and polish up our routines. As always, our seniors started the season strong. We also have some girls who never competed before, but they stepped up and did well. The girls are excited about coming back here Saturday.”

Among the Miners’ freshmen are Martha Rutherford and Emma Krause.

“This was a real good learning experience and I had a lot of fun,” said Rutherford. “Floor is my favorite event. Only, I forgot I had to do three rolls tonight and I did two. We’re like a family. I’m really excited to go to practice every day.”

Krause had similar thoughts about her varsity debut.

“I think everyone did a real good job,” she said. “I think I could have done a little better, but it was more fun than I thought it’d be. May and all the other seniors are always there to help us. My aunt got me to do this when I was younger, and I thought it would be fun and challenging for me.”

Esky sophomore Lizzy Sliva placed third in all-around (32.15), was runner-up on bars (7.8) and beam (7.65), fourth in vault (8.2) and fifth on floor (8.05).

“I think the meet went real well,” she said. “I told myself I was going to do good. May is doing real well for their team. Her score on floor is unbelievable. This was a good meet. Everyone was up and cheering each other on. As a team we did real well. It feels great to score more than 120 points. We’re very excited.”

Block took fourth in all-around (30.2) and Davenport was fifth (28.95).

Block was second in vault (8.6),, fourth on beam (7.2) and fifth on bars (6.2) and Davenport was fourth on bars (6.3) and fifth in vault (8.1).

“The girls need routines with a little more difficulty on floor,” said Pascoe. “It’s a matter of sitting down with the girls, evaluating their routines and see what they’re missing. We work out with a spring floor at Triple A. When they come here they change their tumbling passes because they’re not on a spring floor. We’re very proud of the girls. They’re coming right along.

“Only, we need to focus on staying on beam. We had eight falls tonight, which is not acceptable. Although, they’re starting to understand the importance of keeping their routines moving.

“This is the second year in a row in which we had people who could perform kips, which you need to get from the low bars to the high bars. We’re happy to have four people who can do that.”

Esky hosts Marquette and Negaunee in Saturday’s Elks Invitational.


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