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GYMNASTICS: Bemidji breaks school record in win

BEMIDJI -- Bemidji High School eighth grader Tatum Offerdahl took first in three of the four events in Saturday’s gymnastics meet, leading the Lumberjacks to a school-record score of 141.6 and a win over Detroit Lakes at the Gym Bin.

According to BHS head coach Brianna Fleischhacker, the performance was encouraging considering the remaining potential to get better in the coming weeks.

“They did really well, but there’s still stuff we can improve on,” she said. “There were some falls, or there were some goofy mistakes on beam and bars.”

The Lakers, who are the top-ranked team in the state, scored 135.2 team points but didn’t use their full varsity lineup. They’re average score this season is 151.025, according to the Minnesota Girls Gymnastics Coaches Association website.

“They’re actually the top team ranked in the state right now,” said Fleischhacker. “Tonight, they didn’t compete all their varsity. They’re saving some of their girls for sections, but they’re a force to be reckoned with, for sure. It’s fun to compete against them.”

Offerdahl’s score of 9.5 on the bars broke the BHS record, and she also placed first on the vault (9.15) and the floor (9.25) to help her to the top all-around score of 36.175.

Lauren Lundquist followed closely in the all-around, posting a 35.525. She tied Offerdahl’s 9.25 on the floor and took second on the vault (9.05) and beam (8.925).

Mady Schmidt and Leah Lucas took third (9.1) and fourth (8.95), respectively, on the floor, making for a top-four sweep for the Lumberjacks.

“Their floor set was beautiful,” Fleischhacker said. “I haven’t seen a floor set from our Bemidji varsity team like that in a long time.”

Liz Corradi took first on the beam (9) and third on the vault (9.05), to round out top-three finishers.

Following the competition, the Lumberjacks also honored seniors Tara Tesch and Brooke Hildenbrand.

Due to a history of concussions, Tesch is limited to bars, while Hildenbrand competes in the other three events.

“(Tesch has) been a great role model for the girls on the team, and she’s a hard worker, always dedicated, always focused,” Fleischhacker said. “(Hildenbrand) just has great character. Both of our seniors have great character this year. Brooke is always a smiling, laughing, happy-go-lucky kid who just keeps everybody’s spirits up. They’re going to be really missed next year.”

The Jacks final regular season dual is at 6 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 8, at Park Rapids, and the Section 8A meet is Saturday, Feb. 17.

“They did so well, but there’s so far to go yet,” said Fleischhacker. “So I’m just excited to wrap up these next couple weeks and be ready for sections.”