Girls gymnastics: Geneva puts it all together to down St. Charles co-op

By Chris Walker
Daily Herald Correspondent
Updated 12/15/2021 10:31 PM

The Geneva's girls gymnastics team soared to new heights while St. Charles co-op freshman Rachel Nicastro continued to regain her love of the sport during Wednesday's DuKane Conference meet on Senior Night in Geneva.

Geneva was dominant in its final regular home meet of the season, scoring 140.3 points to easily distance itself from St. Charles co-op's 128.4.


"I feel like we finally all came together and what we've been working for this whole preseason and everything showed tonight," Geneva junior Gracie Weems said. "It was super good and exciting to hit 140 for the first time this year."

Weems led the Vikings in the all-around and was followed by freshman Brooke Lussnig's 34.5 and senior Kate Nitschke's 34.35 as the Vikings became the eighth team in the state to surpass a 140 score this season.

"It definitely helps when everyone is in a good mood and cheering each other on," Nitschke said. "It's weird being a senior so that was sad, but this was good. I think we all did the best we could and we've been really improving."

Nitschke pointed toward the Vikings scoring a 35.95 on beam, its highest-scoring event, as a huge highlight of their performance. While Nitchke led the team with a 9.05, she was among a strong bunch with junior Maura Anderson and sophomore Maeve Devlin posting 9s and Weems scoring an 8.9.

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"We've done stuff in practice where we all try to hit together and that's really helped us to get it like we did in this meet," Nitschke said. "I felt like our beam really came together tonight and we try to make our routines and stay on as much as possible."

Devlin and Anderson also contributed scores to the floor exercise team while freshman Emma Wiedenhoeft's 8.95 on vault and 8.1 on bars were also helpful to the team's total and not to be overlooked.

Possibilities are endless for this Geneva group, which also possesses considerable young, talented athletes.

"I'm so excited for them," Geneva coach Kim Hostman said. "I keep telling them they're a 140-plus team and you just got to keep believing in yourselves and doing what you're capable of doing. So it's exciting that it happened sooner than later and we can build on it."

It hasn't taken long for Nicastro to make an impact in high school gymnastics and more importantly she appears to have found her love for competing again.


"I just wanted to find the love of the sport again," she said. "After being on a team for 10 years you lose the passion for it a little bit. I wanted to find the love again."

Earning top scores of 8.6 on bars, 9.2 on beam and 9.2 on floor, Nicastro won the all-around with a 36.25.

"I thought I hit what I usually hit," she said. "I think we all did pretty good. Everyone was upbeat and had fun. Everyone cheered each other on and did their best. It was good for the team."

And especially good for a social kid like Nicastro who will certainly be drawing attention at meets this winter.

"I'm a very social person so I love meeting people at the meets and love this team aspect," she said. "It's a lot more upbeat and you're supporting each other. It's not self-centered, it's for the team."

Emily Johnson had a 31.75 in the all-around for the co-op. Senior Peyton Walsh scored an 8.65 on beam and 8.8 on vault, freshman Izzi Othon added an 8.2 on floor and junior Cadence Chappel earned an 8.15 on floor and 6.8 on bars.

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