The Franklin co-op gymnastics team returns to Mukwonago today for the WIAA sectional meet. If the results are anything like the co-op's previous two trips to Mukwonago this season, the team and its fans can book their tickets to Wisconsin Rapids for the state tournament on March 5 and 6.
That's because the undefeated Franklin co-op won consecutive meets at Mukwonago earlier this month, including a win in the 10-team Nordentoft Invite on Feb. 13 where the squad posted a state-best 146.625.
"We really tried to focus at our last meet there to prepare ourselves for the sectional meet," Franklin coach Katie Moore said. "Knowing that we will be in the same gym and competing in the same order, we used that meet as a warmup. Considering that we had our best meet of the season in the Mukwonago Invite, I'm feeling pretty good about being there for sectionals. The girls are pretty comfortable in that gym, and I'm hoping our win at the invite really helps the girls confidence.
"Hopefully the girls can capture the same performance this week."
The top two teams in the sectional advance to the state meet. The meet begins at 5:15 p.m.
In the final tuneup before Thursday's sectional, Franklin, which also includes gymnasts from Oak Creek, Muskego and Whitnall high schools, won the Southeast/Classic 8 conference meet at Waukesha West on Feb. 18. The co-op posted a meet-best 143.925 to Kenosha's runner-up effort of 141.425 and Arrowhead's 141.375.
The co-op turned a corner on the vault by finishing nearly one full point ahead of the rest of the teams in the event. Jenna Renner won with a 9.325, followed by Lauren Zurowski's 9.05 (4th).
After a fall on the first bars routine, Franklin clinched the win by nailing its next four efforts and placed three in the top six: Sammie Olson was second (9.225), Melanie Pearson third (9.175) and Renner sixth (9.0).
On the beam to start the meet, Erin Honerlaw was the runner-up with a 9.15 and Becky Schultz was fifth with an 8.95.
On floor, a typically high-scoring event for the co-op, Franklin struggled, but Courtney L'Hullier was fifth (9.25) and Shannon Hein sixth (9.2).
"This is the area we will really look to improve on this week," Moore said. "We can score high on floor, we just need to really focus on the details."
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