Injuries deplete depth, but not Raiders' spirit at state gymnastics



Medford's Kara Hudak transitions from low to high bar during Friday's team competition at the WIAA state gymnastics meet. Photo by Matt Frey/The Star NewsBrooklyn Bilz swings through a giant on the uneven bars during Friday's state competition. Photo by Matt Frey/The Star NewsMegan Wanke earned a personal-best 8.217 on the balance beam during Saturday's individual competition. Photo by Matt Frey/The Star NewsMaddy Wanke started the weekend with a 7.75 in the floor exercise during Friday's team competition. Photo by Matt Frey/The Star NewsBrooklyn Bilz is locked in and focused during her individual bars routine Saturday. This was the start of Bilz's personal-best all-around day, which totaled 34.567 points. Photo by Matt Frey/The Star NewsKara Hudak goes off the spring board and on to the low bar to start her uneven bars routine Friday. Photo by Matt Frey/The Star NewsAfter earning a 7.417 on the balance beam during Saturday's individual state competition, Medford's Maddy Wanke (r.) gets a hug from her sister Megan. Photo by Matt Frey/The Star NewsMedford's Makala Ulrich, Krista Gollhardt, assistant coach Angie Guden, Kara Hudak and head coach Steve Cain cheer on Megan Wanke during her Friday floor routine at the state gymnastics meet. Photo by Matt Frey/The Star News

The injury bug finally reached a point where it was too much for the Medford Raiders to overcome from a team aspect during last weekend’s WIAA Division 2 state gymnastics competition.
But individually, the Raiders had some shining moments and left Wisconsin Rapids with no regrets in what they hope is the first of several state appearances in the next few years.
Down to just three gymnasts per event in Friday’s team competition, the Raiders mathematically weren’t going to keep up with the state’s Division 2 powers and finished 10th out of 10 teams with 93.7667 points. But individually, Brooklyn Bilz set new personal records in the floor exercise and with her all-around total.
In Saturday’s individual competition, Bilz got even better, setting another all-around personal record that just missed the school record. Megan Wanke set a new personal record on the balance beam and senior Maddy Wanke finished with her second-best vault score of the year and a solid beam routine.
For the full story, pick up a copy of this week’s issue of The Star News.

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