ATLANTA – After finishing fourth at state last year, Forsyth Central went into this season hoping for a podium finish.
The Lady Bulldogs got what they wanted and more on Friday, putting together a total team effort to finish second behind Buford. Buford, which scored 111.55, claimed its third consecutive state championship as Central finished with a score of 107.825. Lambert finished third with a score of 105.25 and West Forsyth fifth at 104.45.
Central's best event finish came from Mackenzie Miller, who placed fifth in beam with a score of 9.25, while the next best finish in any event was just ninth place. Central head coach Laurie Karickhoff knew her team had a solid meet and wasn't surprised, despite the lack of individual podium finishes, that her team placed so well.
“We're solid, we have tons of depth,” Karickhoff said. “We have four strong gymnasts in every spot, so we don't have two great scores here and there and a bunch of poor ones like some schools have. We are just strong across the board.”
Central got balanced efforts from Lauren Gist and Miller, who finished in the top-10 of all-around, along with Maecie Winter.
Individually, West freshman Sienna Schrieber surprised herself when she took home the gold medal in vault and beam, scoring 9.8 and 9.65, respectively. Arguably the moment of the meet, Schreiber was the last competitor of the night after all other events had been completed when she stuck her landing in front of the attentive crowd, which burst into applause.
“I felt the pressure,” Schreiber said. “I kind of knew everyone was watching, but once I hit the mat and heard the cheering it was awesome. I wasn't expecting this at all. I really was just here to have fun, with it being my first time, but it's motivating to do so well.”
Schrieber finished fourth in the all-around scoring, while South veteran Maddy Sims finished sixth in all-around. Sims scored third on bars (9.35) and third on floor (9.55).
West's Aundria Crittenden finished second behind Schrieber in beam with a 9.45.
Lambert's highest scorers were Madison Lord, who finished 12th in beam, 13th on floor and seventh on bar, while Alaina Steinberg placed 10th in vault.