Winning now is the No. 1 tenet of high school sports.
But potential is also important, especially in girls gymnastics.
A program positioning itself for future success on the state level, don’t sleep on Oxford.
The Wolverines have two building blocks in freshman Anna Gramlich and sophomore Nicole Bobbie.
“Both Anna and Nicole have excelled with their elite gymnastics club team as well,” said Oxford’s fifth-year coach Chelsie Eckman. “Consistency going forward is the key. We’re hoping both girls can qualify for the State Open.”
Gramlich could possibly qualify for the Open in all four individual events (the top 40 in the state qualify) as well as the all-around (top 20 in the state qualify).
Bobbie’s best event is vaulting.
Gramlich entered this past Friday night’s meet against Wilton and Darien ranked No. 16 on vault (8.1875 point average), No. 13 on bars (7.35), No. 5 on beam (8.50), No. 11 on floor exercise (8.1750) and No. 8 in all-around (32.35).
Bobbie is No. 8 on vaulting (8.3875) and No. 39 on bars. Oxford senior Taren Diaz is ranked No. 10 on bars (7.6875).
Oxford’s roster of nine had dwindled to five Friday due to injuries. The Wolverines beat Hand by one point, while falling to Newtown by three points last Wednesday.
A KEY MEET OF THE WEEK
In one of the best meets of the week, Mercy defeated Hand, 131.4-128.2 last Thursday. Valley Regional (121.5) and Haddam-Killingworth (66.6) also participated in the meet.
For Mercy — led by Mia Lawrence— it was its fifth team score of 130 or more points in six meets.
It was yet another close defeat for Hand, which scored 127.4 points last Wednesday but lost to Newtown (131.8) and Oxford (128.5).
THE UNBEATEN LIFE
Thanks to last Wednesday’s 132.85-128.65 home triumph over Trumbull, the Fairfield Ludlowe is sailing along with an 8-0 record.
Woodstock Academy team remains 5-0 but will be coming out of a 12-day break when the Centaurs host Stonington on Monday. Woodstock Academy defeated Stonington, 135.85-128.95 on Jan. 3.
Woodstock Academy is gearing up to chase its 10th straight Eastern Connecticut Conference girls gymnastics crown. It is also looking for its ninth consecutive state championship.
Gymnasts need to have at least five scores in an event to produce an average. The top 40 gymnasts plus ties across the state qualify in the four individual events. The top 20 plus ties will qualify for the all-around.
Here are the current top five in each event:
VAULT: 1, Ava Mancini (Ludlowe) (7 scores), 9.10 point average; 2, Tess Vincent (Warde) (5 scores), 8.9; 3, Mia Lawrence (Mercy) (5 scores), 8.8875; 4, Caroline Garrett (Warde) (5 scores), 8.65; 5, Britney Detuzzi (Old Lyme) (5 scores), 8.450.
BARS: 1, Mia Lawrence (Mercy) (5 scores), 9.00 average; 2, Ava Mancini (Ludlowe) (7 scores), 8.65; 3, Britney Detuzzi (Old Lyme) (5 scores), 8.20; 4, Evelyn Hogarth (Ludlowe) (5 scores), 8.0375; 5, Grace Rogers (D. Hand) (6 scores), 8.00.
BEAM: 1, Tess Vincent (Warde) (5 scores), 9.0250 average; 2, Ava Mancini (Ludlowe) (7 scores), 8.9125; 3, Caroline Garrett (Warde) (5 scores), 8.80; 4, Claire DeMaso (Ludlowe) (7 scores), 8.60; 5, Anna Gramlich (Oxford) (5 scores), 8.50.
FLOOR EXERCISE: 1, Mia Lawrence (Mercy) (5 scores) 8.95 average; 2, Britney Detuzzi (Old Lyme) (5 scores), 8.8250; 3, Ava Mancini (Ludlowe) (7 scores), 8.6750; 4, Grace Rogers (D. Hand) (5 scores), 8.6250; 5, Tess Vincent (Warde) (5 scores), 8.6250.
ALL-AROUND: 1, Ava Mancini (Ludlowe) (7 scores), 35.20; 2, Mia Lawrence (Mercy) (5 scores), 35.05; 3, Tess Vincent (Warde) (5 scores), 34.2750; 4, Caroline Garrett (Warde) (5 scores), 33.9750; 5, Britney Detuzzi (Old Lyme) (5 scores), 33.7125.
MEETS TO WATCH
Saturday, Jan. 26: Greenwich at Trumbull, 6:30 p.m. (at Next Dimension Gymnastics): Trumbull probably tired of being the hunter in this gymnastics relationship.
Tuesday, Jan. 29: Southington at Glastonbury, 7 p.m. (at Gymnastics Express Too): Upstate rivals can send a message before the postseason.
Tuesday, Feb. 5: Ludlowe, Warde at Wilton, 5 p.m.: Showcase for unbeaten Ludlowe (8-0) meeting always tough Wilton High.
Thursday, Feb. 7: SWC Championship at New Milford HS, 5 p.m.: Newtown High looks for an SWC crown after runnerup finishes the past two years. Host New Milford vying for third SWC title in four years.
Saturday, Feb. 9: FCIAC Championship at Westhill HS, 10 a.m.: Will be a dandy battle as challenger attempt to dethrone two-time defending FCIAC champ Greenwich.