Warde gymnasts win league, Johnson repeats in all-around

FAIRFIELD — Warde’s Emma Johnson earned the all-around title for the second consecutive season at the FCIAC gymnastics championships. The biggest difference for Johnson, now a junior, was that she was able to rise as one with teammates to claim the league crown in competition held at the Gymnastics and Cheerleading Academy of CT.

Warde scored a 142.80 to win its third title (2003-04). St. Joseph was second with 139.15 and defending champion Ludlowe third at 137. Warde placed second in 2021.

“We all wanted to be at our best for this meet,” said Johnson, whose all-around score of 37.75 was a personal record. “We were second (to Ludlowe) last year. We’ve had a lot of girls miss time with injuries and COVID. Today we just came together. It is a wonderful feeling to win the title. What one girl does carries over to the next.”

Johnson stood alone against a field filled with superior performances. First on balance beam with a 9.65, uneven bars with a 9.6 and floor exercise with 9.25, she took second in vault at 9.25. As a sophomore, Johnson brought home gold in balance beam and floor exercise and silver on bars to earn the all-around title with a score of 36.9.

“Emma was outstanding,” Warde coach Darcy Appleby said. “All of the girls needed to trust their training and be confident. We started to improve the last few weeks and are hitting our peak. The girls set their sights on this.”

St. Joseph’s one-two punch of Lindsay Capobiano and Julianna Rizzitelli were among the stars that shined on the league’s largest stage. Capobiano was second with a 36.45 in the all-around and Rizzitelli third with 36.35.

Staples’ Mia Guster was FCIAC champ on vault at 9.3. Stamford’s Lauren Heller was second on uneven bars with 9.5. Warde’s Caroline Garrett was fourth all-around. Ludlowe’s Emma Senatore was sixth all-around with 34.45.

There were multiple ties for placement on the podium. Appleby believes the league meet brings out the best in all participants.

“This is by far my favorite meet of the year,” she said. “The kids get wrapped up together and have fun. They have practiced with each other, they’ve known and competed with each other. You see one team cheering on girls from another. This meet is joyful.”

FCIAC gymnastics championships

Team results: 1. Warde, 142.80; 2. St. Joseph 139.15; 3. Ludlowe, 137.10; 4. Staples, 134.15; 5. Trumbull, 134.10

Vault: 1. Mia Guster (Staples), 9.3; 2 tie. Emma Johnson (Warde) 9.25 Ciara Dawson (Warde), 9.25; 3 Julia Gove (Ludlowe), 9.2; 4. tie. Caroline Garrett (Warde), 9.15 Emma Senatore (Ludlowe), 9.15; 5. Julianna Rizzitelli (St. Joseph), 9.05; 6. Lindsay Capobianco (St. Joseph), 9.0

Uneven bars: 1. Emma Johnson (Warde), 9.6; 2. Lauren Heller (Stamford), 9.5; 3. Lindsay Capobianco (St. Joseph), 9.2; 4 tie. Talia Lalli (Trumbull) 9.15 Julianna Rizitelli (St. Joseph) 9.15; 5 tie. Victoria Fidalgo (Staples 9.05 Abigail Cerny (Ludlowe) 9.05; 6 tie. Caroline Garrett (Warde), 9.0 Jane Luczaj (Ludlowe) 9.0

Balance beam: 1. Emma Johnson (Warde), 9.65; 2. Julianna Rizzitelli (St. Joseph), 9.15; 3. Lindsay Capobianco (St. Joseph), 9.1; 4. Ava Golding (Ludlowe), 9.05; 5. Mia Guster (Staples), 8.85; 6. Kaia Vadas (Warde), 8.8

Floor exercise: 1. Emma Johnson (Warde), 9.25; 2. Mia Guster (Staples), 9.2; 3. Lindsay Capobianco (St. Joseph), 9.15; 4. Caroline Garrett (Warde), 9.1; 5. Julianna Rizzitelli (St. Joseph), 9.0; 6. Bailey Klein (Warde), 8.95.

All-around: 1. Emma C. Johnson (Warde), 37.75; 2. Lindsay Capobianco (St. Joseph), 36.45; 3. Julianna Rizzitelli (St. Joseph), 36.35; 4. Caroline Garrett (Warde), 35.50; 5. Lauren Heller (Stamford), 34.80; 6. Emma Senatore (Ludlowe), 34.45