MARQUETTE - There's more to the Marquette senior High School girls gymnastics team than Avery Rochester.
Last week in a Marquette win over Negaunee, Rochester won two events and the all-around title.
Wednesday night against visiting Escanaba, she won the vault (8.1), and placed second in floor exercise (8.25), bars (7.45) and all-around (31.2).
Marquette’s Dinele Stewart competes in the vault against Escanaba at Marquette Senior High School on Wednesday. (Journal photo by Matt Keiser)
But other Redettes - especially Dinele Stewart and Sarah Fosco -also stepped up to help lead MSHS to a 120.75-105.6 victory over the Eskymos.
Stewart captured the beam (8.3) and placed second in bars with Rochester, while Fosco took floor exercise (8.6) to help MSHS second-year coach Kris Lakenen gain her second win of the season. The Redettes were winless in 2011-12.
"We're on a roll now," Lakenen said after her squad posted a qualifying team score for regional competition. "There's still room for improvement, but I know how hard the girls are working.
She added the win was "a great team effort."
"Other girls (besides Rochester) stepped up tonight. We've been stressing team first and it's neat seeing that pay off."
Mikayla Mitchell added three thirds to the MSHS effort.
Stewart, who Lakenen calls "an awesome representative in the gym," said teamwork is "very important."
"We work together to get better," she said, adding she "landed everything" in her win. "We help each other out."
Said Lakanen: "Dinele has such a strong work ethic. She has matured so much."
Escanaba's Erin Mattson took the bars (8.4) and the all-around (32.45), but it wasn't enough.
"She did exceptionally well in all four of her events," said Eskymos head coach Theresa (Berube) Pascoe, who was a gymnast under then-coach Lowell Meier at Northern Michigan University from 1979-83.
"Erin's a junior, so I expect her to stay strong. I was very impressed with her beam routine, though she had one fall. It was also nice seeing her do well on bars."
Pascoe said her team is young with just 14 gymnasts, two of which are exchange students who had never tried the sport before.
"I was very impressed with our team performance for just our second meet of the season," Pascoe said.
The Esky coach added Marquette showed a lot of depth on bars and was skilled in the beam.
"They had some pretty routines," she said. "This will help my girls realize they can attempt some more difficult jumps and leaps on the beam and not be afraid."
Pascoe noted Eskymo Riley Ducette competed on bars with a broken ankle, while teammate Maggie Richards aggravated a knee injury on her dismount off the beam.
"She's a trooper. She did what she could on the bars for us," the coach said of Richards.
Craig Remsburg can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 251.