NEW MILFORD — The best high school girls gymnasts in Connecticut came together Saturday at New Milford High School for the 2020 State Open Championship.
And both the team and individual performances did not disappoint as the four-hour chase for every gold medal and team plaque went down to the wire.
Class L champion Southington added the State Open team crown to its collection Saturday emerging atop a four-school battle. The Blue Knights amassed 136.625 points to edge Woodstock Academy (136.100). St. Joseph (135.325) was third with Stonington (132.175) fourth.
It was the first State Open team title for Southington, which had been Open runnerup in 2015, 2013 and 2010.
“This means a lot to us and our gymnastics history. The plaque will find a prominent spot in our school trophy case,” said Southington coach Cassidy Chamberland. “This title shows we’ve built the program back up to a high level. The girls put in the work. this is a wonderful end result. And it will be our first trip to the New Englands.”
Southington, Woodstock Academy and St. Joseph will all be participating in the 2020 New England Championships next Saturday at 10 a.m. at Fairfield Warde High School.
The top 10 finishers in each Open individual event can compete at the New Englands. But any gymnast from Southington, Woodstock Academy or St. Joseph does not count toward any Top 10. This allows gymnasts below tenth to qualify for the Connecticut contingent until an event group reaches 10 gymnasts.
The first Open team champion was crowned in 2009. Woodstock Academy, although runnerup for the second time in three years, had captured seven of eight team crowns between 2012 and 2019.
“Today wasn’t our best day. Winning the Class S team title last week was our best postseason performance,” said Woodstock Academy coach Kasey Tocchio. “This Open meet being so close (.525 of a point) shows how strong Connecticut girls gymnastics has become.”
There were also individual event honors awarded as the top 40 regular season qualifiers in each event were invited to compete.
Woodstock Academy senior Jenna Davidson was Open champ on floor exercise (9.55) and all-around (36.575). On floor exercise, Pomperaug’s Sara Myrvold (9.20) was runnerup with SCC champion Mia Lawrence of Mercy third.
“It’s a bit of a sad day because I won’t be doing gymnastics in college,” Davidson said. “The good news is I get to have one more meet (New Englands) with all my wonderful teammates. It will be a very tough field. We’ll just do our best.”
St. Joseph senior Schuyler Tomey was Open champ on vault as her yurchenko routine gave her a top score of 9.475. Tomey was also all-around runnerup (36.475, .010 behind Davidson).
“I was so impressed with the level of competition today,” Tomey said. “It’s so much fun knowing our entire team in going to the New Englands.”
FCIAC champion and Ludlowe junior Ava Mancini took the gold medal on beam at 9.15. Erin Dunn of South Windsor (9.125) was runnerup.
On uneven bars, Tolland senior Alexa Granfield was Open champion with a score of 9.375, just ahead of New Milford freshman Hailey Best (9.325) and Davidson (9.225).