by Beau Wicker
It’s been a banner season already for Logansport’s gymnastics team.
The Berries, ranked No. 10 in the state, have already won North Central Conference and sectional championships, and they went undefeated during the regular season.
The Berries are shooting for their first-ever regional title and first-ever trip to the state finals as a team at tonight’s Lafayette Jeff Regional. Action gets underway at 6:30 p.m.
The top two teams and top six individuals in the all-around and in each event advance to next week’s state meet.
“If we’re all on, I hope we can pull together as a team and make it,” Logan senior Morgan Kline said. “It’s going to be a good competition, and hopefully everybody’s focused on their routines and sticking them. I believe in our team.”
No. 9 New Palestine and No. 18 Franklin Central are also in the regional field. Four-time defending regional champion Roncalli dealt with heavy losses to graduation this year and did not get out of the New Palestine Sectional.
Although New Palestine is ranked higher than Logan, the Berries have recorded the high score this season out of the teams in the regional field, although scoring can vary from one night to the next depending on the judging.
Logan’s season-high score of 107.45 is the eighth highest in the state, according to INGymnastics.com. New Palestine has recorded a 106.95, which is the ninth highest score.
Logan won the Lafayette Jeff Sectional title last Saturday with a 106.375.
“It wasn’t one of our best meets,” Kline said. “We seemed a little off from the beginning, but we pulled it together.”
Kline medaled at the state finals on beam as a sophomore. But she suffered a torn ACL last November. She had surgery and has had a quick recovery, but she can only compete on bars. Her score of 8.0 on bars counted towards the Berries’ team score at the sectional.
“For me, I should have scored higher than I did. I could have done a lot more than what I did,” she said. “But that was my first meet doing my dismount so I was just happy I landed that. Hopefully I can improve my routine.
“I feel a lot stronger. When I first came back I was so frustrated because nothing was like it was four months ago. But I’m feeling stronger already and I just wish I would have a week or more to improve, but I’ll take what I have.”
The Berries have been led this season by a pair of freshmen phenoms, Kelley Platt and Emily Pomasl. The dynamic duo, like Kline, are Level 9 gymnasts in club gymnastics.
“They’ve both stepped up a lot since I went down,” Kline said. “They’ve carried on a leadership role, too, as freshmen, so that says a lot.”
Platt was the NCC all-around champion and sectional all-around champion this season. Her season-high all-around score is 37.675, which is eighth best in the state.
“It’s great to know that I’m an NCC champ and a sectional champ, but when it happened it didn’t really sink in,” she said, adding her teammates helped her to realize her accomplishments. Platt is believed to be the first NCC all-around champion to win all four of the individual events at the conference meet.
“It’s a great experience to be a freshman and winning the whole meets,” she said.
Pomasl was the sectional champion on floor last weekend. Her season-high all-around score of 36.8 is the 16th highest recorded in the state.
Also for the Berries, Maddy Rosenberger scored an 8.8 on beam and 8.65 on vault, and Liz Nies had a 7.925 on floor for scores that counted at the sectional.
“If we didn’t have those scores, we wouldn’t be where we were,” Pomasl said. “I was really proud of Hannah Brandt for stepping up on floor when Jess [Brazzle] got hurt.”
Pomasl and Platt have grown up in gymnastics and have already competed in a lot of big meets at a young age.
Pomasl talked about some of the differences of competing in high school as compared to club.
“There’s different requirements for high school and club, so you have to change jumps and stuff, but mostly they’re the same,” she said. “In high school I’ve switched things up to get an easier routine but cleaner routine so I can do better.”
As of now both Pomasl and Platt plan on competing at Level 9 when they return to club gymnastics.
“I don’t know what’s going to happen with club in the next couple years. They’re changing all the rules,” Pomasl said. “By my senior year I want to compete at least one meet in Level 10 just to say I’ve been a Level 10.”
While not all high-level club gymnasts compete in high school, Platt said the plan all along was to compete for the Berries.
“Our goal was to have all of us here, me and Emily’s freshman year and Morgan’s senior year,” she said. “Our goal is to go to state and win regionals.”