Wylde Chupich of the Burlington/Badger gymnastics team soars high above the balance beam during sectional competition at Mukwonago Feb. 24. Chupich qualified to compete at state as an individual, but the team missed out on a state trip by one-tenth of a point. (photo by Mike Ramczyk)

That’s all that kept gymnastics team from qualifying for state

By Mike Ramczyk

Correspondent

All season long, the Burlington/Badger gymnastics squad has been without two of its top varsity performers, and just recently, the short-handed group hit its groove with a conference championship and its two best scores of the season back-to-back.

But when you don’t have your full squad, every little slip-up is magnified, and even the most talented gymnasts usually need a little wiggle room to achieve their best team scores.

That was the case last Thursday night at a WIAA Division 1 gymnastics sectional at Mukwonago High School.

BBG had to count a few big falls on bars, beam and floor, and Mukwonago/Kettle Moraine counted just a few less as the Indians snuck by the Demons, 137.225 to 137.125, to secure the second state qualifying spot behind sectional champion Franklin/Muskego (147.2).

It was sweet revenge for Mukwonago, which lost to Burlington by a tenth of a point, ironically, two weeks ago at the Nordy Invite in Mukwonago.

Losing in any shape, form or fashion can be a real kick to the gut, but losing by an impossible margin like one-tenth of a point can be unfathomable.

“Sad, mad, frustrated, in disbelief…you name it, we felt it,” BBG head coach Andrea Chart said Tuesday via email. “To lose by a tenth is heart-breaking. To lose by a tenth when we just beat them by a tenth at their invite a few weeks ago almost seems surreal. It felt like something out of a movie and unfortunately we weren’t on the good side of the movie.”

Chart believes the Indians put together a good meet, much like her girls, but they did just a bit more overall.

“We didn’t get to watch a ton of their routines but it seemed they were putting together a pretty good meet,” Chart said. “They had a couple falls I caught and we did as well. With a meet of that magnitude you’re bound to have a lot of weird nerves that lead to some crazy things. We of course want the ‘perfect’ meet but that’s not realistic, so we counted a few big falls on bars, beam, and floor.”

Wylde Chupich led BBG with a fourth place all-around finish, and Addie Welch, Kylie Kramer and Lauren Milligan took eighth, ninth and 10th, respectively.

But Chupich’s 36.25 was far from a season high.

However, it was good enough to qualify for the Individual State Tournament this weekend in Wisconsin Rapids.

Chupich qualified on vault, bars, floor and all-around. She will look to become the first Burlington gymnast to win state since the Big Three of Bailey Fitzpatrick, Jenna Fitzpatrick and Molly Benavides back in the mid-2010s.