Consistency, depth key Dragons to victory over Franklin Central

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New Palestine’s Olivia Frank on the balance beam.

Tom Russo | Daily Reporter

INDIANAPOLIS — On Wednesday night, the New Palestine gymnastics team did what it has been doing a lot of lately — win.

For the fifth straight meet, the Dragons were the top team.

In a four-team meet at The Gymnastics Company, they had a team score of 99.550 to beat Franklin Central’s score of 98.800. Without full teams, Muncie Central had a score of 44.000 and Fishers ended with a 38.850.

“I’m really happy with their performance, especially after we’ve had some injuries,” New Palestine first-year head coach Taylor Brown said. “We’ve overcome that and overcome not getting to practice some because of other sports. Overall they did really well tonight.”

Starting on uneven bars, New Palestine had its lowest team point total of the night with a 22.200. Franklin Central (23.150) was the top team by nearly a point in the exercise.

The Dragons responded in a big way over the next three events.

On beam, floor and vault, New Palestine was the top team in large part due to its consistency up and down the roster.

Franklin Central had the individual winner in all four events, but the Dragons had the depth.

“We’ve just had consistency at practice. We’ve been working on the things we haven’t always been sticking at meets, but we’ve also had high enough start values where we can take a few falls sometimes,” Brown said. “ We don’t want that to happen but with nerves and everything, it happens sometimes.”

The Dragons finished second, third and fourth on vault, beam and floor and had spots three through six on uneven bars.

In the all-around the Dragons placed first, third and fourth led by Lynzie Stiller.

Her score of 34.450 was good enough for the top spot, beating out Franklin Central’s Ava Rebennack (33.800).

Stiller scored higher than an 8.00 in all four exercises and was runner-up on both beam and floor.

Her score of 9.35 on floor was beat out by Franklin Central’s Austyn Dykes who scored 9.60, and on the beam, Dykes’ score of 9.05 was slightly better than Stiller’s 8.75.

Sophomores Olivia Frank and Reagan Seal placed right behind Stiller on floor and were the Dragons top two finishers on vault.

Frank’s 8.30 and Seal’s 8.25 on vault were beaten out narrowly by Rebennack (8.40).

On floor, Frank scored an 8.90 and Seal scored an 8.85.

Frank was fourth on uneven bars and fourth on beam to help lead her to a third-place all-around finish, while Seal was fourth in the all-around score.

Dragons senior Rebecca Johnson was third on beam with a score of 8.40 and was fifth on uneven bars with a total of 6.65.

Junior Chiara Polo finished sixth all-around with her top placement coming on uneven bars where she finished sixth.

Kyndra Monteith competed in two events and scored an 8.00 on vault and a 7.30 on floor.

With the sectional meet just a few weeks away, the Dragons have found continued success, but have also been looking at ways to improve even more before the biggest meet of the season.

“We’re just trying to increase our difficulty as much as possible in these meets so that we can have the highest score that we can from the beginning,” Brown said.

The Dragons will look to keep things going on Saturday at the Bloomington North Invitational. The meet is scheduled to begin at 10 a.m.