The Lyons Township High School girls gymnastics team earned a 142.65-129.40 win over visiting Oak Park and River Forest in its conference finale on Jan. 31. LTHS seniors Kelsy Kurfirst finished first (37.85) and Kelly Ryser placed second (38.05) in the all-around scoring to pace the Lions.
Kurfirst took first in all four categories, scoring 9.0 in the vault, 9.4 in the uneven parallel bars, 9.3 in balance beam, and 9.55 in the floor routine.
“I just wanted to go out there and have fun and enjoy my routines,” Kurfirst said. “I wanted to enjoy one of the last competitions I’ll ever have in this gym.”
“I really love competing with these girls. I’m glad everyone hit their routines. We’ve been through so much since the beginning of the season. The girls have all learned how to become amazing competitors. I’m really excited that we’ve been able to progress this much.”
Ryser placed second in the bars (9.15), beam (9.0) and floor (9.0).
Freshman Julia Cozzi placed third in vault, bars and beam, with scores of 8.9, 8.6 and 8.9, respectively, to post an all-around score of 34.45 and third place.
“Tonight was definitely a huge confidence-booster,” Kurfirst said. “I threw out some skills that I wasn’t expecting to throw. I made them which I was really happy about.
“It gives me the confidence going into the bigger meets that are coming up. I think the same goes for my teammates. We’re all ready and excited to take on the postseason.”
Alyona Jochaniewicz was the Huskies’ top performer with a 33.96 in the all-around. Junior Riley Patnode (33.1) and sophomore Natalie Weeks (31.7) earned sixth and seventh, respectively, in the individual standings for OPRF, which finished 2-3 in West Suburban Conference Silver Division duals.
“I just wanted to stay focused, especially on beam,” Jochaniewicz said. “I’m just really proud of the way our team cheers each other on and stick together.”
Jochaniewicz took third place in floor with an 8.5, and took fourth in the beam (8.0 and bars (8.35). Weeks placed fifth in the bars (8.3) and sixth in the vault (8.4). Patnode’s 8.5 score earned her fifth place in the beam.
“I just wanted to keep my focus and stay clean,” Patnode said. “I was just trying to stick everything and get a good score for our team. We did really well on the floor overall, we were really energized and ready to go.”
The Lions and Huskies turn their attention to the conference meet, which will be held on Jan. 31 (11 a.m.) at York High School. Regionals begin on Feb. 2-3.