It was another outstanding performance by host Conant on Friday night at the 10th Annual Ed Raymond Invitational.
For the third time this season, state-ranked Conant soared over the 150-point plateau as the Cougars comfortably won the tough 12-team meet. Conant finished at 152.82, with runner-up Buffalo Grove at 146.77.
Defending state champion Lincoln-Way co-op put together a very solid meet to place third with 142.25 points while Glenbard West (139.13) was not too far behind in fourth place. Palatine (136.12) rounded out the top five squads with a consistent performance.
One of the biggest difference-makers for the Cougars on Friday night and all season is senior Joey Mauk. He rolled to the all-around championship with a season-high 54.9 point-total, surpassing his previous overall score of 54.7.
Mauk placed second in the state last year on parallel bars, and Friday night he nailed a great routine to easily win that event with a sparkling 9.7.
The battle for third place in the all-around was very close. But Buffalo Grove senior David Kavalerchik (51.56) edged Fremd's C.J. Patton (50.78) in fourth, and Conant's Brian Reedy (50.59) in fifth.
"I added a lot of tricks tonight and I want to focus on floor exercise, parallel bars, and still rings at state," said Mauk, who was a freshman when Conant placed third in the state. "We had a really good meet tonight and the only event we could have done better on was high bar."
Besides parallel bars, Mauk was also the individual champ on floor exercise (9.6) and still rings (9.2).
"There is not too much we have to change-up, we just have to stay clean on events and we should be able to hit 150 which should get us to state," said Conant coach Mike Opsal, whose team scored 27.35 points on floor. "Mauk's all-around tonight was pretty good and the team just has to keep the momentum going."
Buffalo Grove has hit a 147.0 this season and the Bison have been very steady behind the leadership of Kavalerchik.
"This was definitely a better meet than (the Bohl Invite), and we had our best meet tonight on floor, pommel horse, still rings, and high bar," said Buffalo Grove coach Zach Crandall, whose team hit 26.42 on vault. "I was very happy with David (Kavalerchik). He fell on pommel horse, but aside from that he had a great meet again and he's been consistent all season."
Patton's outstanding effort featured a first-place 9.7 on pommel horse to easily topple Mauk (8.8) in second place on that event.
Junior Perry Zumbrook led Glenbard West with a seventh-place 47.5 in the all-around and Zumbrook really shined with a winning score of 9.5 on vault. Mauk placed second on vault with a 9.4 followed by Glenbard West's Dominick Sansone (9.11) in third.
"We have a purely high school team this year and we don't have any guys with club experience so we're very excited to be where we are this year," said Glenbard West coach Frank Novakowski. "Perry (Zumbrook) had a very good meet and he's doing a laid out Tsuk-full on vault and his goal is to be state champ at least on that event."
Kavalerchik placed third on still rings with a 9.2 while Zumbrook was third on floor exercise with a 9.05. Buffalo Grove's Tyler Cho added a fourth-place 9.0 on floor while Schaumburg's Elliot Lam (8.2) placed third on p-horse. Palatine's Lucas Price (8.1) placed fifth on horse and 10th overall. Prospect's Chris Klein (46.6) and Conant's Blake Rossdeutcher (46.43) placed eighth and ninth, respectively, in the all-around.
"We've cleaned up some things from Wednesday and we definitely improved on parallel bars tonight," said Palatine coach Scott Hagel. "(Price) is definitely one of those guys who doesn't make any big mistakes and Austin Hoening had a good score for us on floor with an 8.8."
The meet is named for Hall of Fame coach Ed Raymond, who guided the Cougars to back-to-back state crowns in 1987 and 1988.