BUFFALO GROVE – Clancy Raupp is rounding into form at the most ideal time for Prairie Ridge’s co-op girls gymnastics team.
The Wolves would have won the Buffalo Grove Regional by a wide margin anyway, but they will need Raupp to bolster their lineup in the next two weeks as they chase a third consecutive state championship.
Raupp, a sophomore at Crystal Lake Central, delivered just what Prairie Ridge coach Lee Battaglia was looking for Monday, with four solid events. Raupp won the balance beam and took third in the all-around behind teammates Nikki Baars and Kira Karlblom.
“I did pretty well, considering I’m coming back from an injury,” Raupp said. “This is the first meet I’ve hit all four events. I don’t necessarily feel behind. I tried to keep up my strength while I was recovering. I did a lot of conditioning and stretching and flexibility things.”
Raupp learned she had a stress fracture in her back last summer and missed four months. She returned just before the high school season and Battaglia called her his “ace in the hole” before the season started.
Baars, a senior at Cary-Grove, won vault, uneven bars, floor exercise and the all-around with 37.575 points. Karlblom, a sophomore at Prairie Ridge, took second at 36.875, Raupp was third at 36.775 and Maddy Kim, a sophomore at Prairie Ridge, was fourth at 36.3.
“We’ve had [Raupp] such a short period of time, but I knew that when she got better [healthwise] she was going to be an ace in the hole for us,” Battaglia said. “She’s getting healthy. She’s done her job and she’ll be there next week at sectional. She’ll be big.”
The Wolves scored 148.075 to win the regional and advance to the Fremd Sectional on Feb. 7. All finishers in the top five automatically advance, and others can earn at-large berths.
Battaglia was not that upset that the team missed points with four falls on balance beam. Raupp stayed on and won that event.
“We had a very rough beam, but I’m not worried about it because we’ve gone 5 for 5 and scored 38,” Battaglia said. “It was just an off night for them.”
Baars might have won every event if she had stayed on the beam, but she found a bright spot.
“We did pretty well. There’s always room for improvement, especially on beam,” she said. “I guess this would be the best place to have all those falls. Now we go back to the gym and work hard and improve for next week.”
Prairie Ridge co-op, so.
Raupp, competing in every event for the second meet this season, took third in the all-around at 36.775 and helped the Wolves put up a solid 148.075 team score. Raupp had an offseason injury but is rounding into form at the ideal time for the two-time defending state champs.
5: Prairie Ridge competitors in the top six spots in the vault. Nikki Baars, Kira Karlblom, Raupp and Maddy Kim took the top four spots, while Macey Woodlock was sixth.
AND ANOTHER THING ...
Alyssa Petko has been nagged by a right foot injury, so Prairie Ridge coach Lee Battaglia said she will compete only on balance beam and uneven bars the rest of the way. Woodlock replaced her on vault, and Katie McEnery replaced her in floor exercise.
Buffalo Grove Regional
Team scores: 1. Prairie Ridge co-op 148.075, 2. Barrington 137.475, 3. Buffalo Grove 132.925, 4. Maine West 111.6, 5. Lake Zurich 92.275.
Individual results (top five advance to Fremd Sectional)
Vault: 1. Baars (PR) 9.65, 2. Karlblom (PR) 9.475, 3. Raupp (PR) 9.4, 4 (tie). Kim (PR), Riles (BG) 9.2.
Uneven bars: 1. Baars (PR) 9.7, 2. Kim (PR) 9.475, 3. Karlblom (PR) 9.45, 4. Petko (PR) 9.375, 5. Nilles (Barr) 9.3.
Balance beam: 1. Raupp (PR) 9.15, 2. Kim (PR) 8.95, 3. Diaz (Barr) 8.675, 4. Petko (PR) 8.65, 5. Tenbrusel (Barr) 8.575.
Floor exercise: 1. Baars (PR) 9.675, 2. Karlblom (PR) 9.55, 3. Raupp (PR) 9.15, 4 (tie). RIles (BG), Tenbrusel (Barr) 9.1.
All-Around: 1. Baars (PR) 37.575, 2. Karlblom (PR) 36.875, 3. Raupp (PR) 36.775, 4. Kim (PR) 36.3, 5. Riles (BG) 35.275.