ST. PAUL -- Nicole Smith's uneven parallel bars routine was mistake free and the result was 18th place at the Class 2A individual state gymnastics meet Saturday.
Smith scored a 9.125 at Roy Wilkins Auditorium.
"That was a good score," said Warriors coach Dave Maras. "The first time she broke 9.0 was at the section meet. She went down and swung her routine as well as she could have. That's about as good as it could be."
Smith used the same routine that helped her advance to the state tournament. She concentrated on the little things like keeping her toes straight during the week.
"I was really happy with my score," said Smith. "I thought it was the best routine so far.
"I was concentrating on taking my time and not rushing things. "When I rush that's when I screw up, fall or have form breaks."
Smith swung bars for the Warriors last year in the 2A state team competition. Last year's experience may have helped the senior, who received a 9.15, 9.4, 9.1 and a 9.0 from the four judges.
"It just helped being more familiar and I wasn't as nervous because I had done it before," said Smith. "But it was a little bit different setting because I was there alone.
"It was a little more nerve-wracking but all the other girls from the other teams were really nice. It was really fun."
Maras said Smith didn't seem too nervous before her routine.
"You prepare all this time for just this short moment," said Maras. "You have to get up and do it and sometimes that 20 seconds can seem like forever.
"She didn't make any mistakes. She was happy with it and we're happy with it. With all the competition in the state on bars to be 18th is saying a lot."
Uneven parallel bars
Individual winner -- Cynthia Hertog, Centennial, 9.850
Top 10 -- 2-Marissa Provo, Lakeville, 9.775, 3-Alexis Russell, Tartan, 9.775, 4-Ashley Phillips, Winona, 9.7, 5-Emily Haire, Coon Rapids, 9.625, 6-Justine James, Bloomington Jefferson, 9.625, 7-Natalie Newtson, Hopkins, 9.625, 8-Bailey Young, Winona, 9.55, 9-Chelsey Evenson, Cambridge-Isanti, 9.425, 10-Abby Christensen, Wayzata, 9.4
Brainerd results -- 18-Nicole Smith, 9.125
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