Boys gymnastics: Mundelein repeats as Independent Conference champ
There were definitely a few miscues, but overall the Mundelein boys gymnastics team looked strong Wednesday night at the Independent Conference meet.
The Mustangs wound up winning back-to-back conference championships with 155.2 points as they held off runner-up Libertyville (season-high 149.1 points) in the meet hosted by Glenbard South.
Glenbard East easily locked up third place with 136.8 points as the Rams soared past the fourth-place host Raiders with 117.6 points. Stevenson (105.2) held off Fenton (100.9) for fifth place.
The battle for the all-around crown was a fairly close one. Mundelein senior Tyler Collins took home first place with 53.3 points (8.88 average) as he edged out senior teammate Kurt Lawrence (52.7 points).
Mundelein coach Jesse Piland wasn't totally satisfied with his squad's performance. But he is still very optimistic as his team prepares to host the first of five state-qualifying sectional meets next Tuesday.
"Tyler Collins and Carson Bernett have been rocks all year long, and today he (Bernett) counted on a couple of events when we needed him," said Piland, whose program hopes to qualify for its 22nd state meet in school history next week. "With a meet where we had with two gymnasts not having their best meet, it shows us that if everyone hits we're in the conversation (for top-three at state)."
Glenbard East senior Marc Le placed third in the all-around competition with 52 points while junior Max Faber (50.1 points) led Libertyville's effort in fourth place overall.
Mundelein junior Will Ferro (49.0) placed fifth overall, followed by Libertyville freshman Robert Cartwright (48.1) in sixth place.
"Matt Neuberger was out sick, and he is our anchor on floor exercise and our anchor on pommel horse," said Libertyville coach Josh Cimo, whose team competes in the Schaumburg sectional on May 4. "I wanted to break 150, and we had a fall and a big step on vault, so that was a point lower tonight. When we get everybody back we're really going for that state qualifier and I really think we can do it."
The Wildcats' last trip to the Elite Eight was 2014 when they placed sixth in the state.
Bernett wound up placing seventh overall followed by Glenbard South senior Sean McLaughlin in eighth, and Stevenson senior Danny Less in ninth.
"I feel like we just need more practice in the gym and we'll definitely be ready for sectionals," said Bernett. "We need to be more consistent with our routines for sure, and do it much better than we did tonight for sure."
Le was the floor exercise champ with a 9.4 while Lawrence won pommel horse (8.7), parallel bars (9.1), and high bar (9.2). Collins took home first place on still rings (9.1), and vault (9.4).
"Marc Le did really well and he hit most of his landing really well," said Glenbard East coach Bruce Beiersdorf. "Everybody looked a lot cleaner in the meet, and they're just showing off how good they can do the routines so it's fun to watch."
Libertyville junior Tyler Kukla placed second on parallel bars with a 9.0 while Ferro and Le tied for second on vault with an 8.9. Libertyville's Pat Tanski (8.6), and Glenbard East's Jamylinn Miles tied for fourth on vault. Kukla also placed third on floor with a 9.1 while Tanski (8.9) placed third on parallel bars.
"I thought they pulled it together really well, and I have nine seniors on varsity," said Glenbard South coach Lee Wood. "They're proud about their last meet at home, and they had a solid end to their (regular) season."