Milbank Area gymnasts started the second half of their season on Saturday, January 8. Seven gymnasts were scheduled to compete, but due to illness and injury, only three made the trip to Sisseton. Madison Mathews and Aubrey Fraasch competed for the varsity squad, and Gemma Street was the lone junior varsity competitor.
Although the Lady Bulldogs were short several gymnasts, what they lacked in quantity, they made up in quality. Aubrey was the top scorer for the Lady Bulldogs with 32.750 points and was the second-place finisher. Madison scored 31.500 to take third. For the JV squad, Gemma compiled 25.450 points to earn second place.
Head coach, Amber Fraasch, explained, “Four scores are required in each event to have a team score, so Milbank did not post a team score for varsity or JV at this meet.”
VarsityAubrey took first place with a 9.00 in the floor exercise and Madison finished in second place with an 8.80. According to Coach Fraasch, Aubrey presented a new vault routine that scored an 8.700. Her performance placed her in third at the meet and completed her state-qualifying scores in the vault category. She is now prequalified in all four individual events: vault, bars, beam, and floor.
Coach Fraasch again clarified, ” If you qualify in all four events, you also qualify for State in the all-around competition. We have had only one other gymnast in MHS history prequalify in all four individual events.” “In the bars competition,” Coach Fraasch said, “Madison had a super clean routine that scored 7.250 and placed her in fifth. Aubrey performed a set of giants swings for the first time in competition and the routine placed her in third.” Coach Fraasch noted that Courtney Trapp is the only other gymnast to have performed this skill on the bars for Milbank. “The beam was once again not our friend,'” Coach Fraasch lamented. “Both of our gymnasts took a few falls.” Even with the falls, both finished in the top four — Aubrey came in third and Madison brought home fourth.
Junior Varsity Gemma Street, as the solo JV competitor for the Lady Bulldogs, added a new dismount on bars and combined it with her no-stop routine to earn a personal best bar score of 4.650.
Coach Fraasch said, “The new jumps that she added earlier this season on beam were executed nicely and helped her score a personal best score of 7.300 to place first in the event.” Gemma also had a personal best all-around score of 25.450 to bring home second place.
According to coach Kelly Wollschlager, due to illness and injury, the middle school squad also entered only two gymnasts in Sisseton’s junior high meet against Sisseton and Hecla. Eighth-grader Jaiden Tillotson and seventh-grader Macyn Dunnihoo represented Milbank Area. Milbank started out on beam,” Coach Wollschlager said. “Although both girls fell twice, they both pushed through their nerves and finished the rest of the meet strong. On floor, Macyn added her round-off backhand, backhand, back tuck to upgrade one of her tumbling passes. On vault, Macyn made a clean, solid stuck landing to give her a score of 8.6. Jaiden performed a clean, no-stop bar routine.”