FL gymnasts lose to tough Stillwater team

The Forest Lake gymnasts lost to a tough Stillwater squad on the road last Thursday night, falling 138.4 to 132.175.

Senior Jessica Dhaene led the Rangers in all events to place second in the all-around with 36. 075 points, just behind Stillwater’s top competitor with 36.8 points.

Dhaene took first on the vault with the highest score of the meet with 9.3 on both turns. She also took first on the bars, second on the beam and fourth on the floor.

Head coach Ashley Brett said she has been impressed with the captain’s mental strength following a potentially dangerous crash earlier this season at Roseville on the bars.

“I’m glad she made it back as fast as she did,” Brett said. “After a crash, it’s both a physical and mental struggle and the mental toughness she showed was just great.”

Right behind Dhaene for the Rangers was sophomore Lyndsey Anderson, who took fifth on the vault with a combined score of 8.65 and fifth on the floor exercise.

Brett also mentioned a strong appearance by junior Katie Dison on the uneven bars. Despite taking eighth, the gymnast recently added four-tenths to her degree of difficulty by including a toe front dismount.

“I was very impressed with Katie’s bar performance,” Brett said. “Once she gets that dismount to stick, her score will show her ability.”

The Rangers are competing without two varsity regulars: senior Merina Lenz, who is out with a knee injury until February and junior Julia Walton, who suffered a season-ending elbow injury at the Faribault Invite.

Forest Lake’s junior varsity also had standouts in senior Cassie Giesner taking first in beam, followed by senior Amanda Williamson in third. Sophomore Cassidy Baker also tied for first on vault for the Rangers.

“With all of the injuries, it was great seeing some of the JV girls stepping up,” Brett said. “You never know when you’re needed.”

The Rangers host White Bear Lake tonight, Jan. 17 at 6:30 p.m.