Girls gymnastics loses to Naperville Central in a close matchup

The Naperville North High School varsity girls gymnastics team lost to crosstown rivals Naperville Central on Thursday, Dec.1. The Huskies were defeated by the Redhawks with a final all-around score of 117.2 to 118.7.

The Huskies had a rocky start to the meet with low scores on the uneven bars. However, the team gained momentum on the vault with four out of the five vaulters scoring at least an eight. Senior captain Chloe Smith reflects on the vault performance and how the team felt afterwards.

“Vault started off super strong, I think we were all really happy with how vault went. It was pretty tight,” Smith said.

The Huskies were determined to continue the meet strong. Despite some falls on the floor, the team was only 0.2 points behind Central by the end of the event. The team had their best performances of the night on beam, defeating Central by 1.4 points. They stayed consistent with their moves and kept their team spirit strong. Head Coach Chris Stanicek discusses how the team improved from last night’s meet.

“They really finished the meet tonight. We struggled last night in finishing the meet. We got to beam and… they looked good on beam so that’s a positive,” Stanicek explained.

This was the first ever Crosstown Clash meet between the rival schools, adding both excitement and pressure to the environment. Despite some team illnesses, the girls pushed through the tough competition. Sophomore Erin Arnold elaborates on her feelings towards the meet and is optimistic about a different result next time North and Central face off. 

“[The meet] went pretty good, we were really close to winning and we’ll definitely get them next time. Abby, our best varsity [gymnast], wasn’t here, but she’ll be there next time and we’ll beat them,” Arnold said.

The team credits their strong comradery throughout the meet as the driving force behind their performance. Whether it was cheering a teammate on as they performed or picking them back up after a fall, the team maintained a supportive atmosphere. Smith explains why she is proud of her team’s attitude throughout the meet.

“Team spirit was super important, we’ve had some problems with that… but today, cheering was good [and] everyone was really on top of it. I’m happy with how the team did overall mentally,” Smith said.

The team will compete at their next meet at John Hersey High School on Saturday, Dec. 10 for the Michael Meyer Candy Cane Invite. The meet is scheduled to begin at 12:00 p.m.