By David Paulsen
For the second year in a row, the Waterford High School gymnastics team is headed to the state meet. In addition, the Wolverines have three individual gymnasts who will be competing in specific events.
The individual competetion for the State Gymnastics Championships will be held Friday, March 1, at Wisconsin Rapids Lincoln High School. The team championships are Friday, March 2, at the same location. Waterford will be competing at the Division 2 level.
As a team, Waterford advanced to state following a second-place finish at the Whitefish Bay sectional held Feb. 22. The Wolverines had their highest score of the season, tallying 128.825 points.
“I just told the girls they had to have a good day,” head coach Carrie Buelow said. “They were amazing. They had a great day.”
One of the reasons for an excellent result was that the girls had their season high score on the balance beam with a 32.875.
“Everybody stuck their beam routine, which is impressive for a young team in a big event,” Buelow said.
Waterford scored a 34.025 in the vault, a 32.325 in the floor exercise and a 29.600 in the uneven bars.
Whitefish Bay won the sectional with a score of 135.575. Waupun was a distant third behind Waterford with 121.025 points. The top two teams advanced to state.
Individually, sophomore Sam Dziak qualified for state in all five categories. She won the vault with a 9.250 score.
“She did a new vault and she stuck it,” Buelow noted.
Dziak was second in the uneven bars (8.125) and balance beam (9.025) and third in the floor exercise (8.550). With those scores, Dziak finished second in the all-around competition with a 34.950.
Sam’s sister, Lauren, a freshman, qualified for individual state in the beam and all-around. Lauren was fourth in the beam with an 8.400 and fifth in the all-around with a 32.450 score.
Senior Samantha Jahnke qualified for state in the floor exercise. She was fifth with a score of 8.425.
“(Going to individual state) is a great way to end her gymnastics career,” Buelow said of Jahnke.
The top five finishers in each event qualified for state.
For the Dziaks and Jahnke it is their first trip to state in the individual competition.