Even with an individual state meet appearance under her belt, Anna Tzagournis of the Upper Arlington High School gymnastics team acknowledges that the Golden Bears don't have a so-called star on their roster.

Even with an individual state meet appearance under her belt, Anna Tzagournis of the Upper Arlington High School gymnastics team acknowledges that the Golden Bears don't have a so-called star on their roster.

That wasn't necessarily the case the past few years, as UA had a four-time individual state qualifier in 2015 graduate Mary Kate Keethler as well as a three-time qualifier in 2015 graduate Emily Jones, who did not complete last season with the team.

But Tzagournis and second-year coach Jennifer Lippold agree that a more consistent level of talent across the board could lend an interesting team dynamic to the Bears, who have advanced to the state team meet each of the past two seasons.

"We had a mock meet on (Dec. 6) to see who will compete this week," said Tzagournis, one of two seniors on the team, along with Alyssa Cooper. "It was a fun competition. There is definitely competition, which is good because we are all really strong. If someone isn't there for a meet, hopefully we won't lose a lot."

UA began its season Dec. 12 with a fourth-place finish (127.35 points) in the 14-team Hilliard Invitational at Hilliard Bradley, behind champion Dublin Coffman (137.775).

In last year's state team meet, the Bears finished 11th (131.725) of 12 teams as Brecksville-Broadview Heights (148.7) won its 12th consecutive state championship and 17th overall.

While Keethler was UA's only loss to graduation, her younger sister, Ava Keethler, is skipping her sophomore season to concentrate on lacrosse, according to Lippold.

"We might not be as strong as we were last year, but I feel like we'll have more consistency, level-wise (and) skill-wise," Lippold said. "Last year, we maybe had a few really good girls, and some kind of mediocre. This year is more even.

"I think that helps motivate them a little more, especially if they are even-keeled and then they see someone who is (at) their skill level trying something that is a little harder. It's an attitude like, 'If they're doing it, maybe I can do it, too.' "

Rounding out the roster are junior Lindsey Spangler, sophomores Megan Crouse, Rachael Feinberg, Abby Gray, Julia Hayes, Erin Karap and Zoe Rigsby and freshmen Morgan Griffith and Caroline Pirwitz.

Cooper, Gray, Rigsby and Tzagournis all competed in the state team meet last season.

UA began OCC-Ohio Division competition Dec. 16 in a quad meet at Marysville that included league-foe Hilliard Darby in addition to Bradley, Hilliard Davidson and the host Monarchs.

Last season, the Bears went 3-2 in league duals and placed second (136.625) in the league meet behind champion Coffman (144.4). They totaled 18 points in the overall league standings to tie Olentangy (4-1) for second behind the champion Shamrocks (24, 5-0).

Tzagournis placed fifth in the all-around (33.85) in the Hilliard Invitational. She placed fourth on floor exercise (9.1), sixth on vault (8.5) and ninth on uneven bars (7.9) and was the only Bear to finish in the top 10 in any event.

UA fell short of outdoing its performance in last year's Hilliard Invitational, when it finished second with a 131.7.

"Our goal (was) to make our first meet better than any meet we had last year," Cooper said. "Our technique is definitely better, and our skills have gotten a lot cleaner. We are starting routines off better."