Boys gymnastics: Deerfield, Mundelein and York lead quality Scorza field
The 41st annual Ken Scorza Invitational was an opportunity for boys gymnastics teams to showcase their skills Saturday at York.
After winning the Scorza Invite with only 144.35 points last year, Deerfield rolled to the championship with an impressive season-high score of 157.45 points. While the Warriors performed like a team with realistic state-trophy expectations, the battle for second place turned into a dogfight between the host Dukes and Mundelein. Mundelein edged York by a 147.6 to 146.8 margin.
Behind all-around runner-up Marc Le, Glenbard East placed fourth with 130.1 points followed by Hersey (123.4) in fifth and Stevenson (123.4) a close sixth.
Deerfield's Louis Solovy was the all-around champion with 50.45 points (8.41 average) with Le (50.3 points) nipping Stevenson senior Matt Krames (50.2) for second place.
Mundelein's second-place effort was led by the all-around duo of senior Greg Godellas (50.1) in fourth and junior Tyler Collins (49.6) in fifth.
"We started out so poorly on vault. Every single person fell," said Mundelein coach Jesse Piland, whose team settled for 24.6 on vault. "We counted one bad routine on each event after vault, but someone always stepped up for us to recover after that."
After scoring a season-high 149.6 on Tuesday, York also had a solid tandem leading its squad with Charlie Cripe (48.05) placing seventh and Kelvin Stevens (46.65) eighth.
"We're still after that 150 so that is still our goal, but our high-bar dismounts didn't go as well today (as Tuesday)," said first-year York coach Nick Criel, whose team scored 20.6 points on high bar to close out the meet. "But we scored about two points higher today on pommel horse (22.2), and this was the best we did on pommel horse all season."
Glenbard East has a season-high score of 134.25 to its credit, but the Rams were without the services of No. 2 all-arounder Sean O'Hara and injured junior teammate Josh Vu (three events).
"We're not at full strength today, but Marc Le is having a very good season," said Glenbard East coach Bruce Beiersdorf, whose team scored 25.25 points on floor exercise. "(Le) has really increased his difficulty level in all of his routines, and he's gotten a lot stronger."
Le's second-place overall performance featured a second-place 8.4 on high bar and a fourth-place 9.0 on vault.
"I wasn't satisfied with this meet. I struggled on pommel horse and rings," said Le, who has a season-high of 52.8 in the all-around. "I want to qualify for all-around for the state meet and hopefully place in the top five."
Mundelein got a boost from Yianni Wiechering, who placed ninth, while Rolling Meadows' Ben Kowalski placed 10th. Hersey sophomore Matt Bednar placed 12th overall.
"Honestly, we look forward to practicing the next couple of weeks before the state series," said Hersey coach Dustin Berman, whose team scored 137.9 earlier this season. "There were a few areas that we can clean up. They have a good amount of potential, and they are getting experience for future seasons too."
Godellas hit a 9.6 to win pommel horse, while Kowalski was the floor exercise champion with a 9.35. York's John Gill took home first place on still rings with a 9.35, and teammate Dominic Milazzo (9.3) tied for second on floor.
Mundelein's Will Ferro added a third-place 8.5 on pommel horse, while Cripe (9.05) placed third on vault. Krames (9.25) tied for fourth on floor and added a fourth-place 8.3 on high bar. Collins (8.3) placed fourth on pommel horse, while Stevens was fourth on parallel bars (8.5) and fifth on still rings (8.6).
"We've got so many guys with ankle injuries that we had to take out some dismounts, so that was a significant hit to our scoring," said Stevenson coach Joe Rogalski. "Obviously we didn't reach what we scored at Mundelein (131.8), but that was a very special meet for us."