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Broomfield's Kailey Licata competes on the uneven bars during the Eagles' win against Niwot on Wedensday.
Broomfield’s Kailey Licata competes on the uneven bars during the Eagles’ win against Niwot on Wedensday.

BROOMFIELD — Healthy is a relative term in gymnastics.

In a sport that takes it toll on its athletes more than any other, there are always knicks, bruises and aches.

The defending Class 5A champs from Broomfield are as close to “healthy” as any team in the state and so the Eagles are brimming with confidence.

“This year has been about patience for us and we have been patient and the exciting part is that this is the healthiest we’ve ever been,” Broomfield coach Erika Taga said. “And we still potentially have another few routines we can put into the lineups.

“And even if this is our final lineup through the end of the year, I think we are in a very good place.”

Broomfield, coming off and impressive show last Saturday at the Cherry Creek Invite where they posted a season-high score of 185.2, backed it up with a 184.2 on Wednesday night at the Paul Derda Rec Center against Niwot on senior night. The visiting Cougars finished with a team score of 163.175.

The mantra for Broomfield gymnastics is all about having fun, and the incredibly loose atmosphere in the gym on senior night produced some laid back performances and some good scores.

“On a night like this, it’s about finding that intensity and not being complacent,” Taga said. “That’s what we talk about a lot, don’t get complacent with our success or our comfort zone. They were a little loose at the beginning of the meet, then they realized this is our home gym, we have a big crowd and we need to lock it up and get focused.”

The performance of the night was Sarah Holbrook’s bars routine. She scored a season-best 9.8 that was the catalyst to an all-around victory score of 37.975. She also won the beam with a score of 9.375 and tied with teammate Kailey Licata on vault with a 9.3.

But the night belonged to the seniors, notably Melanie Stelling. The four-year letter-winner for the Eagles didn’t disappoint on her final night in front of the Eagles faithful, finishing second on bars (9.45) and floor (9.6) and third on the beam (9.275).

“I know that there is a lot of room for improvement in the future,” Stelling said. “We still did really good with a lot of hiccups.”

Even though the confidence is high, Stelling and the Eagles know the past is just that and that the next month will be as big as any other time for the state’s foremost program.

“We know this a whole new year and things have changed,” Stelling said. “We know we have to work as hard as possible to make it happen again.”

Other stellar performances for Broomfield included Kailey Licata, who finished second in the all-around with a score of 37.4. In addition to her victory in the vault, Licata was wonderful on the floor with a score of 9.65.

For Niwot coach Mallorie Lang, who once upon a time donned the Broomfield blue, it was a measuring stick night for her team. Maddie Barkow finished third in the all-around with a score of 34.45 that was highlighted by a third-place finish on the vault (9.15).

“The girls come in and I think they are overwhelmed a little bit when they compete against Broomfield, because they know how good Broomfield is and in their minds, they are not there which is completely understandable,” said Lang, who also got productive nights from Allie Koldeway and Tyne Curran. “But the one thing I continue to stress to them is that we are not trying to beat Broomfield, we are just trying to improve on our all-around score.”

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Broomfield 184.20, Niwot 163.175

At Paul Derda Rec Center

All-around — 1. Sarah Holbrook, Broomfield, 37.975; 2. Kailey Licata, Broomfield, 37.4; 3. Maddie Barkow, Niwot, 34.45.

Vault — T1. Licata, Broomfield, 9.3; T1. Holbrook, Broomfield, 9.3; 3. Barkow, Niwot, 9.15.

Uneven bars — 1. Holbrook, Broomfield, 9.8; 2. Melanie Stelling, Broomfield, 9.45; 3. Licata, 9.15.

Floor — 1. Licata, Broomfield, 9.65; 2. Stelling, 9.6; 3. Holbrook, Broomfield, 9.5.

Beam — 1. Holbrook, Broomfield, 9.375; 2. Licata, 9.3; 3. Stelling, 9.275.