Gymnastics: Nelson Schlie shine at state
Rosemount freshman Abby Nelson went into her second state meet hoping to finish in the top six in the balance beam and reach the medal stand.
Coming within 25-thousandths of a point of winning an individual state title was just icing on the cake. Nelson moved up from 14th last year to third place Saturday at the University of Minnesota Sports Pavilion with a score of 9.525. Northfield's duo of Bailey DuPay and Christy Anderson tied with scores of 9.55 and DuPay won the tiebreaker to claim the state championship.
"Her goal going in all week was to make the medal stand and she was super excited to make it," Rosemount coach Jason Passeri said. "It was almost a flawless routine -- probably the best she's had."
It had already been a long day by the time Nelson took her turn on the beam. She warmed up just after 4 p.m. and had to sit through every other event before finally competing at around 9.
"She handled it well. She stayed calm and the pressure never got to her," Passeri said. "We put her last all season because when all eyes are on her it doesn't affect her."
The state atmosphere was a little tougher on seventh-grader Josey Schlie, according to Passeri. She had a small mistake in the floor exercise and two falls on the beam en route to a 22nd-place finish in the all-around.
"She was a little upset about the finish, but she's going to have five more chances at it. She was one of only two seventh-graders competing as individuals in Class 2A," Passeri said. "There are thousands of people there and nerves got to her a little bit."
Schlie's best finish was an eighth-place score of 9.55 in the vault. She was 22rd in the uneven bars, 30th in the beam and 14th in the floor exercise.