THE CHAMPIONSHIPS: The 51st Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association Gymnastics State Championships will take place Saturday, Feb. 27, at Wisconsin Rapids Lincoln High School in Wisconsin Rapids, Wis., for the Division 1 meet and at Performance Elite Gymnastics in La Crosse, Wis., for Division 2, which will be hosted by Onalaska High School. Both divisions will be conducted in two sessions. The first is scheduled to begin at noon with the second session to follow at 5 p.m.
RESTRICTED TICKETS: Only advanced tickets will be sold and restricted to three tickets per competitor in La Crosse and four in Wisconsin Rapids. Ticket prices for the championships are $9 for the day.
CHAMPIONSHIPS FORMAT: The top two teams from the four sectionals (eight in all), the first five gymnasts in individual events, and the first five gymnasts in all-around qualify for the State meet in both Division 1 and Division 2. The State championship will be individual competition that will be conducted concurrently with the team tournament rotation in vaulting, uneven parallel bars, balance beam and floor exercise. Only the four individual events count toward the team standings. The all-around competition is conducted only as an individual event.
CHAMPIONSHIPS STREAMED LIVE: All events of the State Gymnastics Championships will be streamed live and can be viewed with a subscription to the NFHS Network. To purchase a subscription to the live programming for only $10.99 per month, log-on to www.wiaa.tv or www.nfhsnetwork.com and click on the subscription button in the header of the page. Archived streams of the sessions will be available on demand on www.nfhsnetwork.com 72 hours after the tournament.
COMPETING TEAMS: The eight teams that will be competing for the team State championship in Division 1, with the number of times the programs have qualified for the team competition in parentheses, are Arrowhead (15), Badger/Burlington (2), Eau Claire Memorial/North (12), Menomonee Falls/Germantown (3), Mukwonago/Kettle Moraine (7), Stevens Point (23), Verona/Edgewood (9) and Wilmot/Union Grove/Williams Bay (2). The eight teams competing in Division 2 are Ashland/Drummond/Mellen (1), Medford/Colby/Gilman (2), Mount Horeb (34), Nicolet (20),Reedsburg (5), River Falls (31), Sparta (2) and Whitefish Bay (26). There were 82 teams in the Tournament Series this year, including 41 in Division 1 and 41 in Division 2.
TEAM TOURNAMENT HISTORY: The WIAA has sponsored the State Gymnastics Championships since 1971. The event featured one division from 1971 through 1977. The State Tournament Series competition was divided into two divisions in 1978. In 2020, a change to cooperative team eligibility restricted co-op programs to a maximum of two schools or a combined enrollment of the co-op must be less than the enrollment of the largest stand-alone program in each respective division. Whitefish Bay has won the most team championships with 10, which doesn’t include two titles with Shorewood as a co-op. The Franklin/Muskego/Oak Creek/Whitnall co-op is second on the list of team titles won with eight. Waukesha West/North/South is next on the list with seven, and Mount Horeb and River Falls are fourth with six. Brookfield Central and De Pere have five titles. Nicolet and Southwestern/Cuba City have won four championships. Beth Weber of Whitefish Bay/Shorewood has won the most individual championships in meet history with 10. Gina Piazza of Fall River is next with eight, and Jenny Donar of Southwestern/Cuba City, Samantha Krueger of River Falls and Addie Gallun of Whitewater have won seven.
LAST YEAR: Hartford won its first State title in program history in capturing the Division 1 crown with a team score of 144.75. The Wilmot/Union Grove/Williams Bay co-op was runner-up with a tally of 142.116. Individually, Miranda Knabe of Menomonee Falls/Germantown won the all-around competition with a score of 38.15. Gracie Holland of Marshfield was the champion in the vault with a score of 9.583, and Gracie Moran of the Waukesha West/Catholic Memorial/Waukesha North/South co-op claimed the title on the uneven bars with a score of 9.617. Araceli De Leo Lopez of the Franklin/Muskego/Oak Creek/Whitnall co-op set the meet record in capturing the gold medal on the balance beam with a score of 9.867, and Annie Murphy of the Wilmot Union/Union Grove/Williams Bay co-op and Emily Perkowski of Hartford tied for the title in the floor exercise with routines scoring 9.5. In Division 2, Mount Horeb won the team title for the sixth time with a score of 143.216. Former defending champion Whitefish Bay was runner-up with a score of 142.666. Individually, Addie Gallun of Whitefish Bay was the big winner for the second year in a row, winning three events. She won the all-round for the second straight season by posting a score of 37.55. She won the uneven bars for the third straight season, scoring a 9.383, and she reigned atop the standings in the vault with a score of 9.533. Drea O’Connell of Mount Horeb won the other two events, earning the championship on the balance beam with a score of 9.333 and floor exercise with a score of 9.567.
DIVISION 1 NOTEBOOK: There are three returning champions seeking to add to her gold medal count. Senior Miranda Knabe of Menomonee Falls/Germantown was last season’s champion in the all-around. She returns to defend her title. Junior Araceli De Leo Lopez of Franklin/Muskego/Oak Creek/Whitnall returns in pursuit of back-to-back titles on the balance beam after setting the State Championships Division 1 record in the event last season. Junior Annie Murphy of the Wilmot Union/Union Grove/Williams Bay co-op attempts to repeat as the champion in the floor exercise. Knabe may challenge Murphy for the floor exercise title. She qualifies this season after her all-around performance at State last season would have tied for sixth if she had qualified in the event. Senior Maggie Losch of Kenosha Tremper/Bradford/Indian Trail/Westosha Central is also a contender in the floor exercise, having placed fifth in 2020 to go with a third-place finish in 2018. Others among last season’s top performers on the beam returning to contend for the title are junior Drew Gersmeyer of Menomonee Falls/Germantown, who was runner-up last year, and Knabe, who was third. Senior Grace Corcoran of Kenosha Tremper/Bradford/Indian Trail/Westosha Central may also be among the top placers after finishing tied for sixth in 2020. Knabe is also expected to challenge for the championship on the uneven parallel bars after a runner-up finish on the apparatus last season. Among the other contenders on the bars are sophomore Clara Kenney of Hartford, who placed seventh last year, and junior Brielle Lauber of Franklin/Muskego/Oak Creek/Whitnall, who returns to the event after placing ninth last season. Junior Annie Murphy and senior Jadyn Pye of Wilmot Union/Union Grove/Williams Bay, who placed 10th and 11th on the bars, respectively, also have valuable experience at the State meet. Knabe is the top returning gymnast in the vault after last season’s runner-up finish, and Losch is among the leading contenders as well with her fourth-place finish last season. Also expected to be in pursuit of the vaulting title are junior Olivia Rebout of Janesville Craig, who placed fifth last year, and Annie Murphy of Wilmot Union/Union Grove/Williams Bay, who placed in a tie for sixth a year ago. Other contenders for individual titles and the all-around championship this week based on sectional performances include sophomore Maggie Pokomy of Homestead, who won the all-around and uneven bars at her sectional; senior Caroline Erikson of Hudson, who won the all-around and floor exercise at the sectional meet; and sophomore Isabella Bins, who won the sectional all-around completion that included Knabe, who was last year’s State all-around champion. Junior Anna Lauber of Franklin/Muskego/Oak Creek/Whitnall was a multiple-event champion at sectionals, winning the vault and floor exercise.
DIVISION 2 NOTEBOOK: Two former champions are returning to competition this season. Senior Addie Gallun of Whitefish Bay is a previous champion in three individual events and the all-around. She is a three-time champion in the uneven bars in pursuit of becoming just the second gymnast in State history to win four championships on the uneven bars. Gallun is attempting to win her third all-around title, which has been accomplished by only two other gymnasts. She is also the defending champion in the vault, and finished sixth last season in the floor exercise after winning gold in the event in 2019. Gallun could also contend for the balance beam crown after finishing runner-up the past two seasons. Junior Lorisa Shatrawka of River Valley/Barneveld looks to return to championship form in the balance beam. She qualifies this year after winning the title in record-setting fashion in 2019 and slipping to 18th in the event last year. However, the event should be hotly contested with three of the top six finishers from last year returning for another shot at the title, including Gallun, and her junior teammate from Whitefish Bay, Anneh Britz, who placed third last year and fourth in 2019. Senior Autumn Tiede of River Falls is back after placing sixth in 2020. Tiede will contend with Gallun and a host of other experienced gymnasts for the crown in the floor exercise. She placed third last season in the event and 11th in 2019. Junior Lily Wiegand of Sparta placed fifth in the event last season and fourth in 2019. In addition, the event adds sophomore Cassi Hansen of Nicolet, who moves to Division 2 after finishing fourth in the floor exercise in Division 1 last year. Other top-10 finishers in the floor exercise back this year are Britz, who tied for eighth last year, and junior Savannah Clark of Sparta, who was 10th. The vault also has competitors with quality State experience returning to challenge Gallun. Among them is a trio of Sparta gymnasts, including Wiegand, who was runner-up last season and fourth in 2019; sophomore Ella Hemker, who was fifth; junior Savannah Clark, who was seventh; and Tiede, who fell to ninth last year after a fifth-place finish in 2019. Other top-10 placers from last season returning to the floor exercise include Tiede, who was third last year after placing 11th in 2019; senior Grace O'Neil of Mount Horeb, who was fourth; and senior Kynnedi Malone of Nicolet, who was ninth in Division 1 in 2020. Among those with State experience that will attempt to prevent Gallun from capturing her fourth title on the uneven bars are Shatrawka, who tied for fourth in the event last season and was seventh in 2019; Tiede, who tied for eighth last year after a 12th-place finish in 2019; junior Kate Graham of Whitefish Bay, who was seventh last season; and O’Neil, who placed 10th in 2020. Other than the individuals already identified in the event review, Junior Catie McPherson will compete for the all-around title after winning the title at her sectional along with the floor exercise.
FOLLOW STATE MEET ON SOCIAL MEDIA: Receive updates of the State Gymnastics Tournament on the WIAA State Tournament Twitter account @wiaawistate with the hashtag #wiaagym. Also like us on Facebook and follow us on Instagram at wiaawi.
NEED THE QUALIFIERS?: All participants and rotations of qualifying teams and individuals are available on the WIAA website. Access the gymnastics tournament homepage and select the State Tournament Information section.
NEED RESULTS?: The quickest way to attain results will be to access the Tournament Information section from the gymnastics homepage on the WIAA website.
STATE SOUVENIR PROGRAMS ONLINE: The souvenir programs for the 2021 winter State culminating events are available online and available to download and print at no cost. The State Gymnastics Tournaments program with rosters of qualifying teams, history, records and schedule information can be accessed at: https://www.wiaawi.org/Portals/0/PDF/Publications/Programs/2021gymnastics.pdf.
ORDER STATE TOURNAMENT APPAREL: WIAA licensed apparel is available online for the 2021 State Gymnastics Tournament. To browse and purchase branded merchandise, visit the WIAA Store at: https://wiaastategym21.itemorder.com/sale Online purchases will be shipped after the online store closes on Wednesday, March 3 at 11:59 p.m.