Source: Lake Geneva Regional News

Demons dominant again, work toward No. 1 rank
Freshman phenom Fitzpatrick sets meet record

January 12, 2012

PADDOCK LAKE — On Saturday at the Westosha Central Falcon Invite, the entire Burlington/Badger/Wilmot gymnastics team sprinted down the vault runway moments after teammate Bailey Fitzpatrick’s vault performance.

They all circled Fitzpatrick and hugged her in jubilation. The freshman phenom had just landed a jump she hadn’t been able to land in practice all week, and the intricate move helped give her a 9.6 and a first-place finish.

“The girls said I did a happy dance after Bailey’s vault,” coach Diane Biedrzycki said.

Saturday’s celebration was just another example of BBW’s season dominance as the squad remained perfect. BBW punished the field of 11 teams, winning with a season-high of 145.625. The Demons have now gone 5-0 in duals and won all three invites.

The scary thing is this team hasn’t even peaked yet.

“It was our best performance of the season,” Biedrzycki said. “But we could even do better. There’s still room to improve.”

Defending Division 1 state champion Franklin, who downed second-place Burlington by less than two points at state last year, took second with a 143.975. BBW is now 3-0 against Franklin in all events this season. Biedrzycki knows Franklin sets the standard in state gymnastics, and she makes sure to keep an eye on her rival.

“(Franklin coach) Katie Moore and I text each other,” Biedrzycki said. “She told me it will be a two-horse race in the state this year.”

BBW freshman Bailey Fitzpatrick is making sure the Demons are the lead horse in that race. She set a meet record Saturday with an all-around score of 37.65 and won the vault (9.6) and beam (9.25). Fitzpatrick also posted a 9.5 on the floor, dazzling the judges with an aerial assault of corkscrews and complex flips.

“I’m learning she is a fierce competitor,” Biedrzycki said of Fitzpatrick. “She was a little off during warm-ups. I was impressed. It was neat to see her put everything together.”

Badger senior Kerry Leonard medaled on the beam in seventh place with an 8.925. Fitzpatrick’s sister Jenna won the bars with a 9.65. Also, Molly Benavides was third in the all-around with a score of 36.125.

Although it was the highest score in the state so far by any team, Biedrzycki said the team suffered a few falls on beam which deducted a point or two. She was happy with the team’s energy and attitude, and she is confident her girls will improve.

“We haven’t peaked yet,” Biedrzycki said. “It’s exciting. We need to improve on our consistency. We had to count two falls on beam. Also, we can improve our form on vaults.”

The Demons will get a week to rest up before returning home Jan. 19 against Waukesha.

Biedrzycki said the team’s next big test with be the Madison Memorial Invite Jan. 28. The meet will include Franklin and Arrowhead.