With the all-around and team titles decided Friday, Saturday's individual competition at the state high school gymnastics meet at Hillcrest High was a time to relax and have fun. It was also a chance to recover from the previous evening's failures.
And that's what Kim Clark did. Brighton's Temple Humpherys, on the other hand, didn't have any miscues Friday. Nor Saturday.Humpherys continued her near-perfection performance that earned her the all-around title and the Bengals a third-place finish. The junior stormed through the individual competitions, placing among the top four in every event.
"I just came in with a positive attitude. I was really excited to do this. I came in to take first. That's what I really wanted," Humpherys said.
Humpherys came close to taking first in every event. She did win the floor competition, edging out Heidi Granere of Hillcrest, 9.70 to 9.625. She was second in the vault and bars events. The Bengal standout did prove she was human, taking a tumble from the beam to finish fourth with a 9.35.
For Clark, the individual contests offered a bright light in an otherwise sub-par state meet. The Hillcrest junior failed to defend her all-around title Friday, placing seventh. But Saturday she was back in top form.
With the scores from both evenings averaged to determine the overall mark, she was behind before it even began. But she hung on.
Clark, landing a handspring-full became the new vault champion with a score of 9.6. She also garnered a seventh- place finish on bars, an event dominated by Hillcrest. Her teammates Dana Benefiel, Granere and Jane Greenwood finished fourth, fifth and sixth.
"Usually floor and beam are my strongest events, but this meet I kind of messed up. I was excited about my vault, all I wanted to do was stick it. I'm glad I could win one," Clark said.
The bars state title went to East High freshman Holly Rausch, who nailed her routine for a 9.70. Averaged with her previous mark of 9.55 she edged out Humphreys for her first state championship. She also gained a third place on floor.
With Humphreys taking a fall off the beam, all Janica Hayes needed to do was perform a safe, solid routine and the beam title would be hers. The Hillcrest sophomore did just that, landing a 9.5 to finish first.
Although she didn't win an individual title, Granere was among the top finishers in several events. A second in the floor and beam, fifth in the bars and eighth in the vault capped her state tournament in which she finished second in the all around. Judge's Natasha Montoya finshed well in her final state meet, claiming a third in both the floor and vault and a sixth on the floor.
For four seniors, this was not the last meet of the season. The top senior all-around competitors - Greenwood of Hillcrest, who finished third; Alta's Christie Hachiya, fifth; Montoya, sixth; and Gaylene Thaxton of Alta, eigthth - were selected to compete next month in the National High School Gymanstics meet in Chicago, Ill.
Last year, Utah finished fifth in the meet that features the top prep gymnasts from across the country.