Nicolet senior Ellen Liang was able to end her career on a high note when she earned sixth on the balance beam in the WIAA Division 1 individual state meet on March 4 in Wisconsin Rapids.
"What an amazing ending to a beautiful four years with Ellen," said coach Chris Dempsey. "A 9.3 for sixth place amongst a world of 9.8s. It is so emotional when you see an athlete that works so hard reach podium status at state."
The beam was one of four events that Liang had qualified in for state.
Her 9.317 beam mark was one of 13 scores over 9.0 in a very deep field as Brookfield freshman Lexi Penny won with a 9.55.
Liang also finished 14th of 25 in the all-around with a 36.083 mark as Kenosha's Sam Weyker won with a 37.967. She was also 13th on vault with a 9.3, and Weyker and FMOW co-op's Abigail Missiaen turned in spectacular 9.8s to share the title and 15th on uneven bars with an 8.567. While competing in the all-around, Liang also turned in a mark of 8.9 in the floor exercise.
Liang had two teammates with her at state as fellow senior Lauryn Wagner was 20th on beam with a non-fall routine of 8.367 and junior Cailin Mahoney was 23rd on the bars with an 8.0.
Those efforts finished a fine season for the Knights, who narrowly missed out on a state team berth in WIAA sectional competition the previous week despite a team mark of over 140.
"This sport is the most challenging but the most rewarding," said Dempsey. "Creating champions in life and in spirit is my goal in life. Having them prove they have it all is a passion."