Issaquah, Skyline renew gymnastics rivalry in 4A

December 15, 2008

By Christopher Huber

Eagles field seven of the top 10 gymnasts

Dani Cogswell, of Skyline, dismounts with a twist from the balance beam, winning the event with a score of 9.45. Photo by Greg Farrar.

Dani Cogswell, of Skyline, dismounts with a twist from the balance beam, winning the event with a score of 9.45. Photo by Greg Farrar.

The Skyline Spartans and Issaquah High School Eagles gymnastics teams met Dec. 11 at Skyline High School as new KingCo 4A opponents. The Eagles beat the Spartans 167.05-151.9.

The meet was Issaquah’s first of the season, and served as a reasonable gauge of how tough KingCo competition will be this winter, said Issaquah head coach Ryan Fleisher.
Despite the loss, Skyline head coach Debbie Gliner was happy with the results.“We had our best meet in two years. We made some really great strides,” she said. “It would have been nice to win, but we had a really nice meet for us.”

Gliner had good reason to be happy about Skyline’s performance.

Dani Cogswell took first place in the vault, bars and beam and was the meet’s all-around top finisher. But it wasn’t enough to come out on top.

The Lady Eagles had more gymnasts score higher in each event. And seven of the top 10 gymnasts at the meet were from Issaquah, which is to equal or best last year’s third-place finish at the state Class 3A championship meet.

“We needed to go in and get a starting point,” Fleisher said of the team’s opening meet. “We had some pretty good performances and obviously found some things we need to fix.”

Cogswell won the vault (8.850 points), the bars (8.600 points), and the beam (9.450 points).

“Bars is going to turn out to be strong,” Gliner said. “It’s going to be one of our better events. Floor has a lot of good potential.”

Issaquah’s Olivia Goree, Risa Fukuda, Ashley Lester and Kelley Richards took the top four places in the floor routine and all finished the night in the top five behind Cogswell.

“They had a lot of strong players,” Gliner said about Issaquah.

One thing Fleisher said they will work on this week is more complex vaults with higher start values. The gymnasts will need it when they face Newport and defending state champ Woodinville.

“Going into 4A is just so different. It’s (the meet) given us a little indication of where we are,” Fleisher said of the switch from 3A. “We have a lot more fighting to do this year. We just have to make the best of it. All we can control is ourselves.”

Reach Reporter Christopher Huber at 392-6434, ext. 242, or chuber@isspress.com. Comment on this story at www.issaquahpress.com.

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