They already met their goal of advancing to the state meet, so why not step things up a little?
This is the mindset of Baraboo High School sophomore Jamie Runnels and freshman Brittany Reuter as they prepare for the WIAA Div. II Individual State Gymnastics meet this weekend. Both Runnels and Reuter have plans to up their difficulty in their respective events, the vault and the uneven bars.
Runnels, who performed a front handspring full on the vault which notched her a score of 8.6 at sectionals last Thursday, plans on unveiling a completely new vault on Saturday.
“This week we’ve been training a new vault, it’s called a Suk; it’s a round off onto the vault and a back tuck off. So we’re working on that, and I think I’m going to be able to do it for state, it’s really what I want to do.”
Runnels will look to beat her personal best score of 9.0, but said she’ll use her sectional vault as a backup in case her Suk falls through.
“If I throw the Suk, I have no idea; I’ve never gotten a score but if I end up throwing the handspring I want to try and beat my score from last year at state.”
Runnels recorded an 8.75 on the vault to take 21st place out of 25 gymnasts at state last year, with the state’s highest score coming in at 9.383.
Reuter meanwhile will compete at state for the first time but has no plans on performing an easy routine on the uneven bars. Reuter said she’s working on adding giants to her routine, which involves swinging around the bar while in a handstand. The rest of her routine is comprised of kips, a clear hip, two uprises, and a layout flyaway.
“I just want to do the best routine that I can do. I’ve been working on giants to put in, so hopefully I can get that in and to put my score up higher,” said Reuter on her state goals. “My coaches say that (the giants) are there, and I’m going to work them again (Friday) to see if they are there by myself. If I get them, I’ll be really excited so I can do it on Saturday.”
Reuter’s sectional score of 7.9 landed her in third place on the bars. A 7.9 in last year’s state meet would sit her at around 18th or 19th place in the event, while last year’s highest scoring gymnast recorded a 9.35. Reuter mentioned she hopes to beat her personal best of 8.025.
“I’m just really looking forward to competing there,” Reuter said. “I know it’s going to be a really fun experience. And I’m really looking forward to watching the division one teams, because I know they’re really good, some of them are amazing.”
Reuter will compete in round one at the state gymnastics meet on Saturday at Wisconsin Rapids Lincoln Fieldhouse, while Runnels will compete in round five. The march-in will begin at 10:45 a.m., while the approximate start for competition is slated for 11:15. After being the lone Thunderbird at state last year, Runnels is more than happy Reuter will be joining her.
“I’m happy this year I have someone to go with me, because last year I didn’t know anybody from the sectional,” she said. “It’s exciting.”