Laurie Kaiser, who won the first all-around award at the Capital Cup Women's gymnastics championships last year, tied for that honor last night with Stacey Kaplan of Rochester, N.Y.
Kaiser, 15, from St. Paul, Minn., and Kaplan, 14, came in with identical scores of 36.75 at the fourth annual championship meet, which drew 300 gymnasts from 43 clubs in 14 states to Montgomery College in Rockville. A number of clubs canceled because of outbreaks of the flu.
In the overall team competition, the Parkettes of Allentown, Pa., finished first in the six-person division with a score of 175.65.The Seagulls of Minnesota won the three-person team competition with 104.70.
Kaiser scored 9.5 on the balance beam, 9.25 on the vault and floor exercises and 8.75 on the uneven bars in sharing the all-around honors despite her failure to finish first in any single category.
Yet her 9.5 on the balance beam was enough to qualify her for individual category final competition, 2:30 p.m. today.
"I did a front flip, two back hand springs into a layout and a double back dismount," she said.
Kaplan, who commutes four hours round trip by bus five times a week to practice at the Niagara Frontier Gym Club in Buffalo, said simply, "I'm very happy."
The first place title was the second in two weeks for the young gymnast. She scored 9.4 on the vault, 9.15 on the balance beam, 8,85 on the uneven bars and 9.35 on the floor exercises.
Although her vault score was the highest of her individual records, her floor exercise score was the first in that category.
"She's determined. She's dedicated. She's just a wonderful kid. You're going to hear more of her," said her coach Peter Sielski of Buffalo. y
Marcia Frederick, 17, of New Haven, Conn., a member of the 1980 U.S. Olympic gymnastics team, entered the meet but dropped out after performing on the uneven bars and the balance beam.
"Flat tire," she said, pointing to her left ankle as she sat on the floor surrounded by youthful autograph seekers.
Shrugging her shoulders, she said, "I don't really know why I came. I just wanted to try it. I hurt my ankle a week ago and I didn't want it to get any worse."
Frederick's score on the uneven bars, although respectable for the Capital meet, was mediocre for her. At one point she seemed to falter, then fell the wrong way from the high bar, causing a deduction from her score.
Winner on the uneven bars was Tina Herman, 16, of Westchester County, N.Y. She posted a 9.5 in an afternoon performance that was detailed and intricate.
"It's the first time I've done that routine in a competitive event," said Herman. "I knew I had done well. It just felt really good."
First on the balance beam was Gina Stallone, 15, of Allentown, Pa., who began with a front somersault, moved quickly into a backhand handspring and followed with a double twist. "I've been doing this for 10 years and I like it a lot. I was really pleased today," said Stallone.
"It's really dramatic the way she does it, that's just terrific," said her coach Donna Strauss.