Shorthanded Ranger gymnasts drop pair of dual matches

The Ranger gymnasts typically have one meet per week. Their last two competitions, though, came in a span of three nights. Forest Lake fell to Rush City/Pine City/Hinkley-Finlayson on Tuesday, Jan. 24 and to East Ridge on Thursday, Jan. 26.

The Rangers were shorthanded on both of the road trips, as all-around participant Merina Lenz was sidelined with a knee injury.

The Tigers, from Section 4A, won by a score of 133.125-130.0. Rush City’s Cassidy Dunkley won the all-around competition with a score of 35.9.

Ranger junior Jessica Dhaene took second in the all-around with 33.625. She won the bars (8.75) and floor (9.325) and took second on the vault (9.0). Sophomore Caitlin Freer took third on the beam (7.925) and the floor (8.65).

Cassidy Baker and Izzy O’Neil saw their first varsity action for Forest Lake.

“They both handled the pressure very well,” said coach Ashley Brett. “A lot of times gymnasts will feel so much pressure from moving up to the varsity line-ups that they will make mistakes. There were no mistakes.”

Two nights later, Forest Lake’s score dropped to 127.075 points in the loss to East Ridge.  The Raptors scored 136.3 points.

“Two-meet weeks are hard on the girls,” Brett said. “It’s a lot of extra pounding on the body and the girls were definitely feeling it on Thursday night.”

Dhaene again won the bars competition (9.0) and took second on the vault (8.975). She also took second on the beam (8.625) and scored 34.45 all-around points, good for second place.

On the JV front, Dani Sardeson took second all-around with a score of 25.45 points.

Forest Lake remains busy this week. The girls host Woodbury tonight (Feb. 2) and take part in the Minnetonka Invite on Saturday.