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(Tribune photo by Rand Middleton) The top three in the Section 6A vault competition Saturday at Willmar salute the crowd after receiving their medals, first-place Haley Mottinger, center, of Willmar; runner-up Cassie Johnson, left, of Willmar, and Jailyn Brinkman, third-place, of Melrose.

Gymnastics: Willmar's Mottinger, Johnson vault to state tournament


WILLMAR — Cardinals freshman Hailey Mottinger and senior Cassandra Johnson placed 1-2 in the vault event to gain the Class A State Gymnastics meet.

Johnson also qualified with a third-place finish in floor exercise during the Section 6A meet on Saturday at Kennedy Elementary School.

Willmar sophomore Stephanie Thompson just missed after reaching state last year (beam); she finished in the top eight in three events and sixth in all-around.

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Rand Middleton

Covers Willmar and area high schools and Ridgewater College, plus amateur baseball, stock car racing and fitness events in summer. Writes weekly column since 1980. Began working in radio and at weekly newspaper in Munising, Michigan, in 1972. Started parttime at West Central Daily Tribune Sept. 1974. Fulltime beginning Feb. 1979. Married to Tribune news clerk Donna (Miller) Middleton, formerly of Kerkhoven. 2 grown children. 

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