Janesville69.3°

Craig’s Ennocenti puts all her effort into vaulting back to the top at state

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JOHN N. BARRY
January 20, 2011
— How do you top winning a state title?

For Sara Ennocenti, the answer is easy.


Impress the judges by making an already dynamic vault even more spectacular.


Ennocenti, a Janesville Craig High School senior, won the WIAA Division 1 state gymnastics title last year on vault.


In gymnastics, unlike the majority of other sports, it’s not all about how an athlete performs. Judging is a critical component.


“Getting back to state and getting a chance to win another state title means a lot to me,” Ennocenti said. “I want to make sure every practice is a good one, where I’m working hard and concentrating on getting better. I don’t want to have any wasted time at practice.


“No one is harder on myself than I am. And I think that’s why I’ve worked so hard, so that I can give myself a chance to go to state again this year.”


Ennocenti’s state-winning vault a year ago earned her a score of 9.483. The vault was called a Tsukahara in a pike position, meaning Ennocenti did a one-quarter turn entry round-off onto the horse. This year, she is hoping to turn the vault up a notch in both difficulty and appearance by adding a layout position to the landing instead of the pike position.


“I think, more than anything, it comes down to not holding back anything,” Ennocenti said. “You can’t be afraid to make the vault.”


Ennocenti also knows that judging can be the key above all else. She felt after last year’s state meet that her vault—although a solid effort—was not quite good enough to win state.


Lindsey Maier of Kenosha, the last competitor of the state meet on vault, stuck her landing. Ennocenti figured Maier’s vault and perfect landing would be worthy of first place. It wasn’t, as Maier finished with a score of 9.433.


Tonight, Ennocenti and her Cougar teammates host Janesville Parker in a battle for Big Eight supremacy. Both teams are 4-0 in conference dual meets and ranked in the top five in the state for Division 1.


Parker also will host the Big Eight Conference meet, while Craig is scheduled to host the WIAA sectional. The top two teams at the sectional meet qualify for state competition.


“I’m really pumped about Thursday night,” Ennocenti said of facing the Vikings, a number of whom she competes with for the CSA club team. “We’ve talked as a team about being consistent and how important it is to beat them.


“And if we don’t win, hopefully, it will be a wake-up call. We will know what we have to work on.”


Ennocenti will be competing tonight in the all-around. The vault is her specialty, but she hopes to improve enough in the other three events (balance beam, uneven bars and floor exercise) to qualify for state in more than one event.


All Ennocenti really wants, though, is another chance to leave a lasting impression. No matter what the judges might say.


THE ENNOCENTI FILE
Person I admire most: My dad (James).
Pregame routine: Can’t eat anything before or during a meet.
Best sports memory: Winning state on vault.
TV show I never miss: "Make It Or Break It."
Favorite food: Noodles.
Favorite movie: "Stick It," or "The Blind Side."
In 10 years, I’ll be: Coaching gymnastics.
Best invention in the last 100 years: Cell phone.
An unusual thing the average person wouldn’t know about me: I broke my arm my sophomore year doing a routine on the uneven bars.
Dream job: Olympic gymnast.
If I could have one super power, it would be: Invisible.
My favorite saying: "Champions are made when no one is watching."
CD currently getting the most play: Ke$ha or Taylor Swift.

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