AUSTIN EDITION -- Packers fourth in conference

Kooy turns in top overall performance for Packers

ROCHESTER -- Austin finished fourth in the Big Nine Conference meet in gymnastics on Saturday in Rochester.

Winona won the meet with 146.15 points and Mankato East was the runner-up with 144.6. The Packers, still battling injuries, had a 137.2 score.

"Overall, we had a pretty good day," Austin coach Mark Raymond said. "We didn't have the best day we could have, but the girls did perform well. This will give us some information on what we need to work on for the next couple of days before the sectional meet."

Austin senior Amy Bickler, usually one of the top competitors in the Big Nine, was returning from a back injury. She competed in just two of the four events, and her best finish was 10th in the bars. She also competed on beam.


"We are still healing a couple of injuries and a couple of girls are not 100 percent but overall we are getting healthy," Raymond said.

Bickler was taking part in her first meet since Jan. 5.

"It was good to have her back in the lineup again before the sectional meet," Raymond said.

Senior Suzanne Kooy had her best all-around score (36.05) of the season for the Packers, placing in the top 10 overall. She was seventh on the bars, eighth on the beam and 11th in floor exercise.

"I was happy with her performance on the day," Raymond said, "but it is definitely not all that she has. There are a couple of little things that can be cleaned up to bring her scores up."

Austin eighth-grader Whitney Johnson turned in her best performance of the year on the vault. She was eighth with a personal best of 9.175.

"It is nice to have a good results and still be able to identify a couple tenths that we can get before the sectional," Raymond said.

Raymond and Amy Stites of Mayo were selected co-Big Nine coaches of the year. Bickler and Kooy were both named all-conference for the Packers.


The Packers will be hosting the Section One, Class AA meet on Friday at 5:30 p.m.

Big Nine Gymnastics

Team results

Winona 146.15, Mankato East 144.6, Owatonna 140.475, Austin 137.2, Mankato West 130.975, Faribault 128.325, Rochester John Marshall 126.025, Rochester Century 125.85, Rochester Mayo 113.175.

Individual event winners

Vault -- 1. Amy Knutson (East) 9.575; 2. Liz Landwehr (East) 9.45; 3. Amanda Knutson (East) 9.325; 10. (tie) Whitney Johnson (Austin) 9.175. Bars -- 1. Katie Crouse (Winona) 9.675; 2. Amanda Knutson (East) 9.3; 3. Steph Barber (Owatonna) 9.3; 7. Suzanne Kooy (Austin 9.10; 10. Amy Bickler (Austin) 8.65. Beam -- 1. Lyndsey Boigenzahn (Winona) 9.2; 2. Amy Knutson (East) 9.15; 3. Abbie Denzer-Johnson (Winona) 9.1; 8. Kooy (Austin) 8.90. Floor -- 1. Amanda Knutson (East) 9.7; 2. Crouse (Winona) 9.625; 3. Amy Knutson (East) 9.425; 11. Kooy (Austin) 9.05. All-Around -- 1. Crouse (Winona) 37.55; 2. Amy Knutson (East) 37.375; 3. Amanda Knutson (East) 36.875.

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