Whenever a program must replace its all-time leading scorer, others must step up.

That's what the Fairfield Ludlowe High School gymnastics team is forced to do. For the first time since the 2007-08 season, the Falcons will be without Dani Pasquerelli.

Without Pasquerelli, the Falcons still expect to be strong. Ludlowe returns all-state gymnast Perry Kindel and two other all-FCIAC performers, Kate Palmer and Jordan Feeney.

"We're looking strong this year," Ludlowe coach Kim Longobucco said via email. "It will be tough to replace [Pasquerelli], but the returning girls have stepped up."

The Falcons placed third at the FCIAC meet a year ago thanks to Kindel, Palmer and Feeney's performances. Kindel was fourth in the league in all-around-- thanks to fourth-place finishes in beam and floor. Feeney was eighth in floor exercises.

Longobucco also welcomes back Anny Moeder, Cate Seymour and Charlotte Hill. Seniors Genevieve McNamara and Holly Eichrodt "provide experience and leadership for the team," according to Longobucco.

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The Falcons will look to freshman Nicole Huntsman as a key contributor, Longobucco thinks her talent can fill the void Pasquerelli's departure creates.

"She will be a definite all-around competitor and top-candidate in the FCIAC," Longobucco said.

The Falcons' goals are simple.

"We're looking forward to an injury-free, successful season," Longobucco said. "Our team goals are to improve our placements at FCIACs ... and quailify for the Class L meet and perform in the top-four."

ppickens@bcnnew.com; twitter.com/Pat_Pickens