Mundelein gets North Suburban title, all to itself
For the third straight year, Mundelein's girls gymnastics team reached its goal of winning the North Suburban Conference meet.
But the best part for the Mustangs was winning the championship outright after they shared it last year with Warren.
Mundelein earned NSC honors in the dual-meet portion of its schedule and claimed the top spot with a score of 143.1 in the conference meet hosted by Stevenson on Thursday night. Warren was the runner-up with 139.25, followed by Stevenson (134.65), Libertyville (126.3), Lake Forest (124.075) and Vernon Hills (119.7).
Mundelein is getting healthy at the right time, as the Mustangs seek their first state berth as a team in a couple of weeks.
"We're all happy to be back and injury-free," said Mundelein's Taylor Shanahan, who finished third in the all-around. "We're really working hard to make our dream of a trip to state come true. We have a close-knit team and everyone is here to support each other. We're pushing through at the best time of the season."
"(State) has been our goal since the beginning of the year," Mundelein coach Jamie Brongiel said. "We're getting more consistent and we hope to stay healthy."
Megan Kehr was the all-around champion with 37.65. She also chalked up first-place performances on vault (9.55), floor (9.55) and beam (9.5). She had a third-place finish on bars (9.05).
"The first month was hard because gymnastics makes you so sore for a while," Kehr said. "I wasn't expecting to be on that podium, but I wanted to be there."
Shanahan rang up a 36.25 in the all-around. Her 9.4 on vault tied for third with Warren's Teagon Albert and Katie Graeb. Shanahan was fourth on bars (9.0), fourth on floor (8.90) and fifth on beam (8.95). Taylor Kozaritz took fourth on both beam (9.05) and floor (8.7). She had an 8.3 on bars to tie for fifth with Warren's Hannah Beyrer.
Warren posted it season-best score, as Albert led the way by finishing second in the all-around (37.3). She chalked up top honors on bars (9.3), was second on floor and third on beam (9.15).
"It's all a good experience," Albert said. "On the bars, I was going with what I could go with. I was able to land my double-back on the dismount."
Fellow Blue Devil Grueb landed her Tsuk pike vault, earning her a third-place medal. Beyrer finished fifth in the all-around (35.6), third on floor (9.15) and fourth on beam (9.05).
"The first one was great because I stuck the landing," Grueb said. "If you stick your landing, you stand a good chance at placing. Everything goes by so fast on the vault."
Stevenson's Mikaela Webb placed fourth in the all-around (36.1), but the senior's best event was bars, as she took second with a 9.25. She placed second on vault (9.45).
"It was another step in the right direction," Webb said. "It wasn't my best meet, but it wasn't my worst. I made the right movements upward that I needed to. I feel it's a confidence builder (for the state series). I'm taking things one step at a time, thinking that I'm not a senior because it might make things worse. I just want to do my best."
Regionals begin on Monday with Stevenson hosting Carmel Catholic, Lake Forest and Evanston. Warren will compete at Glenbrook North next Wednesday with Libertyville and Wheeling. Mundelein hosts the final regional next Thursday with Deerfield, Vernon Hills and Niles North. Mundelein also hosts the sectional on Tuesday, Feb. 9.