March 20, 2010
VALPARAISO EDGES RONCALLI FOR THIRD STRAIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP IN GIRLS GYMNASTICS
Behind one first place finisher and two second placers, top-ranked Valparaiso reeled in its third straight state championship and Roncalli’s Alyssa Servie won the all-around crown during the 38th Annual Gymnastics State Meet at Perry Meridian High School.
In the closest 1-2 finish in the 38-year history of the state meet, Valparaiso (113.300 points) edged second-ranked Roncalli (113.175) by just .125 of a point. The 1995 and 1999 state meets had both been decided by .15. For Roncalli, it was the team's second straight state runner-up finish. Columbus North, which entered tied for second in the state coaches poll with Roncalli, finished third at 111.800. Chesterton ended fourth at 110.125.
Valpo sophomore Haley Whipps took the uneven bars title with a 9.575 and placed second in the vault (9.80) while classmate Steffanie Long took second in the floor exercise with a 9.750. Those performances went a long way toward helping the Vikings capture the school’s eighth overall state title under head coach Lorie Cook.
The Vikings were making their state record 17th appearance as a team and became the first school to win three straight since Connersville completed its three-peat in 1989.
Servie totaled 38.025 all-around points behind a win the balance beam (9.625) and a second in the bars (9.550) to become the first Roncalli student to win the competition. Hagerstown’s Caitlyn Catania finished second in the all-around race with 38.000.
Lawrence Central’s Jessie Leko edged Long for the top spot in the floor. It was the second championship in the floor competition in three seasons for the senior who scored 9.775 to Long’s 9.750.
Columbus North senior Cassie Funcheon, who was named the mental attitude award winner, topped all vault contestants with a 9.80.
38th Annual IHSAA Gymnastics State Finals
March 20, 2010
Perry Meridian High School, Indianapolis
Final Team Scores
||Fort Wayne Bishop Dwenger
||Carroll (Fort Wayne)
Uneven Bars – Haley Whipps, 10, Valparaiso, 9.575.
Balance Beam – Alyssa Servie, 12, Roncalli, 9.625.
Floor Exercise – Jessie Leko, 12, Lawrence Central, 9.775.
Vault – Cassie Funcheon, 12, Columbus North, 9.80.
All-Around – Alyssa Servie, 12, Roncalli, 38.025.
COLUMBUS NORTH'S CASSIE FUNCHEON NAMED MENTAL ATTITUDE AWARD WINNER
Following the event, members of the IHSAA Executive Committee named Cassandra (Cassie) Funcheon as the recipient of the Mildred M. Ball Mental Attitude Award.
The award is presented annually to a senior participant in the state finals who is deemed to have best demonstrated mental attitude, scholarship, leadership and athletic ability in gymnastics.
Funcheon has been a four-year member of the varsity gymnastics team helping the Bull Dogs to four consecutive appearances at the state finals, three conference championships and served as team captain two years.
She is a member of the school’s marching band, track team, Key Club and National Honor Society.
Academically, she maintains a 4.0 GPA taking several AP courses and ranks fourth in her class of 503 students. She intends to student management and finance at Indiana University.
She is the daughter of Jim and Cindy Funcheon of Columbus.
Indiana Farm Bureau Insurance, the corporate partner of all IHSAA state championship events, presented a $1,000 scholarship to Columbus North High School in the name of Funcheon.
The mental attitude award is named in honor of the former IHSAA assistant commissioner who served the Association from 1977 to 1997. During her career, Ball administered the state gymnastics tournament among other sports and also oversaw the licensing and training of all contest officials in the state of Indiana.