Latest Trier coach Jen Pistorious’ words were measured, but her smile told a distinct story on Tuesday night.
Pistorius and the Trevians gymnasts felt if they may land second within the difficult Glenbrook South Sectional, then a state berth was likely, if not inevitable.
So when the refreshed scores confirmed Latest Trier’s runnerup finish, Pistorius and company quietly celebrated the moment.
“Oh my god we took second,” she said. “I’m so happy with them. Second. I’m so glad.”
Only eight spots can be found within the IHSA girls gymnastics finals. 4 of those spots go to sectional champions, and the remainder go to the very best scores amongst non-champions — irrespective of the sectional.
As expected, state power Vernon Hills — a back-to-back state runnerup — claimed the highest spot within the GBS Sectional with a 145.5 team rating. Latest Trier recorded a 141.975 to complete second and just ahead of fellow state hopefuls Lake Zurich (141.45) and Lake Forest (141.425). Senior Morgan Deger on the beam for the Trevians.
With three of the state’s 4 sectionals complete as of Wednesday, the Trevians hold the second-highest at-large rating (Glenbrook North: 142.45). The ultimate sectional is Thursday, Feb. 8, at Wheaton-Warrenville South. Defending state champion Downers Grove South is the favourite, and three other teams would need to rating at the very least 142 — an unlikely scenario — to maintain the Trevians from state qualification.
Latest Trier is a recent regular on the state finals, competing within the event six times in nine seasons between 2012-2020. However the Trevians missed out on a state berth each of the last two seasons, in addition to in 2021 when no state meet was held due to COVID-19 pandemic.
The Trevians were led on Tuesday by junior Clara Crossgrove, who finished third within the all-around with a rating of 36.5 and added a second-place bars routine (9.5) and fifth-place floor routine (9.05) — all three places ok for individual qualification.
Junior Sammy Mills placed third on floor (9.1) and senior Annabel Sturgis (9.375) third on bars to every nab automatic individual qualifications — a primary for every of the Trevians. Latest Trier sophomore Anna Virgili competes on the uneven bars through the sectional.
Latest Trier’s rating of 141.975 was a full three-point improvement on the team’s regional performance. Pistorius said the sectional was a pleasant change of pace from recent history.
“I’m glad with that (rating) at sectionals because our M.O. for the previous few years is we’ve got an important regional after which get to the sectional and all the pieces falls apart. We make silly mistakes that wouldn’t normally occur,” she said. “Early this season, we talked to the ladies saying we’ve got to organize for this. … And I’m so happy with them. We did have some uncharacteristic things, however the work that we put on this week, we saw a lot improvement and so rather more confidence.”
At-large team and individual state qualifiers will probably be available on Thursday evening. The state championships will probably be held Friday and Saturday, Feb. 16-17, at Palatine High School.
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