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Raising the bar

Bailee Meyer was not a top scorer for her team in the floor exercise, but contributed heavily with a fifth-place finish on the bars to help the Royals gymnasts take third place overall at the Wolfpack Invite last week. Staff photo by Tom Carothers

It was one their best performances of the season, but the Royals gymnasts still found themselves scoring behind two of the top ranked teams in the state Saturday at Park High School's Wolfpack Invite.

A score of 144.175 was good enough for third place, five points behind the Raiders and just more than a point behind second-place Eden Prairie.

Royals head coach Julie Bell said the team's second highest score of the season and bronze medal finish was encouraging, but she felt that a number of individual miscue kept the team from standing at the top of the podium at the end of the invite.

"We definitely took some steps in the right direction," Bell said, noting that the caliber of the competition was top notch. "We had some season best scores and were able to get a lot of (junior varsity) girls some experience at the varsity level."

"We've struggled with inconsistency and falls throughout the season."

Despite not being able to close out the meet in first place, several Royals gymnasts recorded season high scores (Bailey Meyer, bars; Amy Jurvis, floor; and Erin Kohlbeck, Jenna Kilgore, & Amy Jurvis on vault).

No Woodbury gymnast placed first in any event, but a number of strong scores added up to a finish that Bell said is comforting heading down the home stretch of the season.

"There's some comfort in knowing that on a bad day we still scored 144 and took third," she said. "But there's also frustration in knowing where we could be if we'd put it together one of these days. I guess the key is to peak at the right time, and ultimately, we're going in the right direction to make that happen."

The Royals gymnasts play host to Hastings Thursday, one week before their biggest dual of the season against top-ranked Roseville.