By Christina Marmet, Caroline Medley and Elizabeth Grimsley
Conference championship Saturday was a whirlwind of nearly 12 hours-straight gymnastics coverage. From program records, first-ever titles, surprising finishes and more, there was so much to digest and watch that we think you deserve a perfect 10 for yourself if you managed to catch it all. But if you’re human and didn’t have time for everything Saturday, we’ve got you covered. Read up on the exciting things you may have missed.
Big 12 Championship
Full Results | OU: 197.850 | DU: 196.475 | WVU: 195.575 | ISU: 195.500
VT: Nichols 10.000 | UB: Wofford, Dowell, Nichols 9.950 | BB: Brown, Capps 9.925 | FX: Jackson 9.950 | AA: Capps 39.625
third, West Virginia outlasted Iowa State but just 0.075, largely because of Zaakira Muhammad’s 9.900 on floor and Kirah Koshinski’s same score on vault. Iowa State also had a couple of top scores for itself with a 9.9 from Haylee Young on vault and a 9.875 from her on floor as well. However, both teams were a bit too 9.7-y to really challenge Denver for second. Just as the Sooners dominated the regular season weekly awards, the gymnasts swept the yearly honors as well with Capps claiming gymnast of the year, Nichols winning newcomer of the year and Jackson earning event specialist of the year. However, Denver snuck into the coach of the year accolades with KJ Kindler and Melissa Kutcher-Rinehart earning co-honors.
Full Results | LSU: 198.075 | UF: 197.825 | Bama: 197.400 | UGA: 196.700 | UK: 196.625 | AU: 196.550 | Miz: 195.825 | Ark: 194.900
VT: Gnat 10.000 | UB: Bailey, Priessman 9.950 | BB: Winson, Gnat, Hyland 9.950 | FX: Baker, McMurtry, Gnat, Kelley 9.950 | AA: McMurtry 39.700
rallied behind her to post a 49.400 and to momentarily place in the second position behind LSU. Kiana Winston was also back in the all-around. Just like Florida, Alabama didn’t have enough stuck landings or as clean routines as it would have liked to grab that SEC crown, but both of these teams are certainly capable of better performances, and coming so close with many little details to still work on is very encouraging. Georgia was making its return to the evening session and actually posted its highest total of the night on balance beam with a 49.275. Oh Georgia, you will never cease to amaze us. The GymDogs were overall solid despite a slow start that really hampered their hopes of coming after the other three teams. They really missed the usually strong performance of Rachel Dickson, who rolled her ankle on floor in the first rotation, which thus forced the coaches to make last minute changes to the lineups on vault (where Beth Roberts filled in for her), and beam (Morgan Reynolds).
In the afternoon session between Kentucky, Missouri, Auburn and Arkansas, scores were a bit more conservative as expected despite strong performances from all four teams. Continuing with its record-breaking season, Kentucky came out on top out these four schools with a 196.625, its highest SEC championship score ever. The Wildcats had a bit of a rough floor rotation with shaky landings and out-of-bounds, but gave one of their strongest beam performances of the season, with Alex Hyland actually winning a share of the beam title. Auburn also had a fantastic afternoon and posted its season-best score of 196.550. It was great to see the Tigers put together such a strong meet and to do so on the road. Missouri started on bars and was forced to deal with a fall from Britney Ward right off the bat, and it unfortunately never really was able to find its momentum afterwards. The Tigers came back strong on the other three events, as did Ward, but an average day wasn’t enough to compete with great days from Auburn and Kentucky. Finally, Arkansas was the only team in the championship forced to count a fall, and it came on beam after Speed and McGlone came off the apparatus. The team had been having a fairly good meet until that point despite putting only five up on floor. The Razorbacks have had a rough season after being hampered by injuries and losing many key players. In the end, this was an exciting meet to watch despite the unsurprising finish among the top four. The end of the year conference awards (i.e. Gymnast of the Year, Freshman of the Year etc…) have not been announced yet, but should be within the next few days.
Full Results Session I - Session II | Utah: 197.925 | OSU: 197.400 | UCLA: 197.100 | UW: 197.100 | Stan: 196.625 | Cal: 196.300 | Ariz: 196.275 | ASU: 195.600
VT: Dessaints, Lewis, Skinner 9.950 | UB: Aufiero 9.950 | BB: Ross 10.000 | FX: Skinner 10.000 | AA: Skinner 39.725
Ross’ 10, and the floor rotation wasn’t as nerve-wracking as we are used to. Senior Angi Cipra brought her 2016 iPhone routine back and got a 9.9, so we are guessing it’s here to stay.
In the first session, we saw Stanford put together a complete meet and score its season best of 196.625 to come out on top. We were in for a rollercoaster of emotions when it was originally announced that Elizabeth Price would be competing in the all-around, but then was pulled from beam and replaced by Kaylee Cole. Sad. California entered the afternoon session as the top seed, but was forced to count a fall on beam. The Bears came back strong on floor and posted their highest floor total of the season, but it wasn’t enough to pass Stanford and to grab the top spot of this session. Arizona tied its season high score and hit 24 for 24 routines. Kennady Schneider was one of the highlights of the session on floor with her Beyonce routine, and freshman Christina Berg tied for first in this session on bars with a 9.875. Last but not least, Arizona State put up another strong performance to close off its remarkable season. The Sun Devils posted a big 49.275 on beam where both Ashley Szafranski and Heather Udowich scored 9.875. While it is sad that we won’t see this team again this season, it has been thrilling to watch them bounce back from disappointing results over the last few years and to come back strong and on the rise. As for awards, Oregon State’s Kaytianna McMillan won Gymnast of the Year, UCLA’s Peng Peng Lee Specialist of the Year and Kyla Ross Freshman of the Year. Coach of the Year was awarded to Washington’s Elise Ray.
Big 10 Championship
Full Results Session I - Session II | UM: 197.300 | Illinois: 196.875 | Iowa: 196.725 | Neb: 196.475 | Ohio State: 195.525 | PSU: 195.200 | MSU: 195.200 | Minn: 195.175 | RU: 194.700 | Maryland: 193.625
VT: McLean 9.975 | UB: Horth 9.925 | BB: Drenth, Leduc, Chiarelli 9.925 | FX: Karas, Deans, Frederick, Lagoski 9.925 | AA: Artz 39.500
to get itself into regionals, started the meet in No. 37 but managed to to enough by just 0.010 to squeak into the next round of postseason competition by the smallest margin. Michigan State also had a great meet by its standards, hitting a 195.200 to tie Penn State, who competed in the second session. Three of MSU's seniors Nicola Deans, Kira Frederick and Elena Lagoski also tied for the floor title, an impressive feat when competing in the earlier session. Rutgers also jumped a spot in the conference standings, passing Maryland, which had a dismal performance that ultimately knocked it out of regionals in an unfortunate last-minute drop from No. 35. The long day of competition wrapped up with the yearly conference awards. Nebraska’s Taylor Houchin won freshman of the year, Artz won gymnast of the year and Iowa’s Larissa Libby was awarded coach of the year.
Full Results | Boise State: 197.050 | USU: 196.100 | SUU: 196.075 | BYU: 194.675
VT: Douglas, Means 9.825 | UB: Mejia 9.950 | BB: Esmerian, Webb, Sanzotti, Means, Remme 9.900 | FX: A. Webb, Blake-Howard, S.Webb, Ward, Jorgensen 9.900 | AA: Remme 39.375
coming out with the silver. USU started on bars, and despite a miss from senior Bailey McIntire, they came up with a solid rotation, counting all scores 9.75 or higher. Beam became the Aggies’ strongest rotation of the night, including a 9.9 from Hayley Sanzotti, and the team escaped without a single fall. Floor scores ran a bit low, dashing any hopes of challenging for the title. But sophomore Madi Ward came through to tie for the floor title at 9.9 and showed everyone why she’s been Floor Specialist of the Week almost every week this season. They finished on vault, their lowest-scoring event of the night, but it was just enough to clinch the runner-up spot. Southern Utah got to compete in Olympic order, but its vault rotation did not score as it would have hoped, had it wanted to challenge Boise State. It bounced back well through, improving on bars to break 49 and hitting all of its beam routines. Coach Scotty Bauman, true to his word, stepped out while Stacie Webb (who scored a 10.0 last week while her coach wasn’t watching) went on beam, and she snagged herself a share of the beam title with a 9.9. The Thunderbirds closed it out on floor, with title-tying 9.9s from Webb, Mady Blake-Howard and Autumn Jorgensen, but due to one little deduction, they came up just shy of USU’s score to land in third place. Finally, the BYU Cougars began their meet pretty strongly, counting all scores 9.75 or higher on both floor and vault, but their lack of 9.9-level scores kept them behind the pack. Both Jessie Westergard and Brittni Hawes fell on bars in the third rotation, forcing BYU to count a fall, which further limited their scoring potential. They finished the meet strong though, with half of their rotation scoring a 9.8, and freshman Shannon Hortman was awarded the MRGC Freshman of the Year. The majority of the conference’s remaining awards went to Boise State, as Remme won Gymnast and Beam Specialist of the Year, Mary Frances Bir won Vault Specialist, Diana Mejia Bars Specialist, and Tina Bird and Neil Resnick won Co-Coaches of the Year. Madi Ward was Utah State’s lone award winner, taking home Floor Specialist of the Year honors.
Full Results | GWU: 196.275 | UNH: 195.075 | N.C. State: 194.875 | UNC: 194.525 | Pitt: 194.100 | Towson: 193.225
VT: Drouin-Allaire 9.900 | UB: Mulligan 9.875 | BB: Lauter, Pflieger, West 9.900 | FX: Phillips 9.900 | AA: Drouin-Allaire 39.400
Towson posted a 193.225 to finish sixth. Morgan Lane from UNC won Gymnast of the Year, while fellow teammate Khazia Hislop grabbed the Freshman of the Year award and Amy Smith the Assistant Coach of the Year honor. Scholar Athlete of the Year is Jillian Winstanley (GWU), Senior Athlete of the Year is UNH’s Meghan Pflieger, and Coach of the Year is GWU’s Margie Foster-Cunningham.
Full Results | EMU: 196.500 | BGSU: 196.400 | CMU: 196.100 | WMU: 196.075 | NIU: 195.725 | KSU: 194.850 | BSU: 194.750
VT: Corbett 9.925 | UB: Conrad, Gervais, Rubin, Stypinski, Peszek, Potts 9.900 | BB: Stypinski 9.950 | FX: Hilliker, Rose 9.950| AA: Stypinski 39.500
Natalie Gervais and Lacey Rubin. In second place was host Bowling Green, whose highlights of the meet also came from their last rotation. Sophomore Kayla Rose exploded with a 9.95 to tie for the floor title, and freshman Jovannah East came up with a 9.925 of her own, helping their team to a 49.3 for the rotation, their highest floor mark of the season. The Falcons’ 196.4 total was also a season high. In third place, Central Michigan started on bars very shakily, costing them the good start that could have propelled them to a better ranking. Despite the early struggles though, the Chippewas bounced back, with a pair of 9.9s, on beam from Caroline Fitzpatrick and floor for Katy Clements, and a 9.95 on floor for Macey Hilliker, earning her a share of the event title. In the end, they earned the bronze with a 196.1. Western Michigan also totaled its second-highest score in program history at 196.075, and it tied its program record on beam at 49.175. Highlights for the Broncos included Anna Corbett’s win on vault with a 9.925 and Jessica Juncaj’s 9.9 on beam. Jessie Peszek also scored a pair of 9.9s on bars and beam, the former of which earned her a share of the event title. These top four teams made history on Saturday, as this is the first year four teams have scored 196+ at the MAC championship, which speaks to the growing talent and effort in the conference. Previously, only two teams at a single championship had accomplished this feat. And the remaining teams’ scores are nothing to sneeze at. Northern Illinois has had a rollercoaster of a season, culminating in an excellent 195.725, their third-highest in history. The Huskies also broke their all-time floor record, notching a 49.350 total for the event. All scores counted were 9.85 or higher, highlighted by Courtney Dowdell’s 9.9. Junior Ashley Potts also scored a 9.9 on bars, earning her a share of the event title and a career high. Junior Katherine Prentice also set a career high in the all around at 39.250. In sixth, Kent State’s mishaps came on vault, where they were forced to count two falls, severely limiting their ability to really contend for the title here. That didn’t stop junior Rachel Stypinski, though, as she won the all around and beam titles and tied for the bars title. Her 39.500 ties KSU’s record for an all around performance at conference championships and ranks sixth in program history overall. Kennedy Plude was the only other Golden Flash to score a 9.9 or higher, scoring a career-best 9.9 on beam and setting up teammate Stypinski for her winning 9.95. Finally, Ball State took seventh, set back by having to count a 9.000 on beam. They also couldn’t crack the 9.9 mark, which put them behind the pack even further. The team’s highlights included 9.85s from Madison Howell and Kayla Becker on bars, as well as a 9.85 from Jordyn Penny on beam. Stypinski took home her second consecutive MAC Gymnast of the Year award, Jamyra Carter of NIU earned Specialist of the Year, Peszek earned Senior Gymnast of the Year and East earned Freshman of the Year. Sam Morreale of NIU took home the program’s first MAC Coach of the Year award, honoring the historic season the Huskies have had.
Full Results | SJSU: 195.925 | UC-D: 195.725 | Sac State: 195.175 | AFA: 194.075 | SPU: 192.775 | UAA: 191.750
VT: Shepard 9.825 | UB: Soliwoda 9.925| BB: Nogaki, Hyderally 9.925 | FX: Brown, Chan 9.875 | AA: Brown 39.375
39.375. Sacramento State earned third place at 195.175, wounded by having to count a 9.325 on beam. The Hornets didn’t come up empty-handed though, as junior Caitlin Soliwoda took home the bars title and tied for fourth-best in school history. She also scored a 9.9 on beam and was the only Hornet to score 9.9 or higher all night. Air Force came up with their second-best score of the season at a 194.075. Limited by minor mishaps on each event, the stumble came when the Falcons were forced to count a fall on beam. Senior Kara Witgen, however, excelled on beam, matching her career-high of 9.875 and reaching the second-highest score in program history. Jamie Lewis and Anna Salamone also scored career highs that night with matching 9.8s on bars. Fifth place went to Seattle Pacific, the only DII team in the conference, totaling a 192.775. Though they counted multiple falls on bars and beam, the night wasn’t a total bust, as it was the team’s second-highest total of the season. In addition, junior Ariana Harger placed third on vault with a 9.775 and fifth in the all around with a season high of 38.975. Alaska, though they placed last, also made history at the meet as freshman Sophia Hyderally tied for the beam title with a score of 9.925. This marked the highest beam score in Seawolf history and the first time an Alaska gymnast had claimed the beam title at a conference championship. She also became just the third Seawolf to notch a score of 9.925 or higher. Alexis Brown of UC Davis won MPSF Gymnast of the Year while her coach John Lavallee took home Coach of the Year honors. Taylor Chan of SJSU won Freshman of the Year, and her coach Shella Martinez earned Assistant Coach of the Year.
Full Results | LU: 194.675 | TWU: 194.000 | Illinois St.: 193.575 | UIC: 192.750 | SEMO: 192.500 | Centenary: 190.350
VT: Brawner 9.900 | UB: Marema 9.875 | BB: Sokolowski 9.850 | FX: Cooke 9.925 | AA: Brawner 39.225
Gabrielle Cooke’s who had the highest score of the entire competition, tallying a 9.925 on floor for a fantastic routine. UIC’s Mikailla Northern also hit 9.900 on the event to come in second.
award, also hit a top mark on floor to share the title. Southern Connecticut notched above a 190 for the seventh time this season. Assistant coach Linda Mullin also won assistant coach of the year and Kathleen Aberger was named scholar-athlete of the year. Valentine won athlete of the year while Comport took home specialist of the year honors. West Chester’s Barbara Cordova won coach of the year while Bridgeport’s Maya Reimers was named rookie of the year.
Full Results | Yale: 194.600 | Cornell: 194.450 | Brown 194.125 | W&M: 193.925 | Temple 193.675 | Penn 192.075
VT: Moore 9.800 | UB: Phillip, Ryan 9.875 | BB: Gironda 9.875 | FX: Morant 9.875 | AA: Dudley 39.100
Some big scores were thrown around at the division I session of ECACs this season! Three teams scored above 194 and another was nearly there. In all, 23 scores of 9.800 or higher were thrown up, including 9.875s from Temple’s Alexa Phillip and Yale’s Megan Ryan on bars, William & Mary’s Briana Gironda on beam and Brown’s Caroline Morant on floor. But as for the team competition, it was all about Yale as the Bulldogs claimed their first-EVER ECAC title with a 194.600—a season high. Bulldog Jade Buford was awarded conference rookie of the year for her stellar season and head coach Barbara Tonry was honored as coach of the year. Brown’s Morant won the well-deserved gymnast of the year award after having quite the 2017 season so far. Cornell’s Lyanda Dudley, who won the all around with a 39.100, also shared the gymnast of the year honor while assistant coach Melanie Dilliplane was named assistant coach of the year. Wrapping up the awards, Daisy Todd of Temple took a share of the rookie of the year award while Cornell’s Kaitlin Green won specialist of the year.
NCGA East Regional
Full Results | Brockport: 191.850 | Ursinus: 189.450 | Springfield 188.450 | Cortland 186.975 | Ithaca 185.525 | RIC: 179.100
VT: Mager 9.850 | UB: McConnell 9.750 | BB: Ruoss 9.700 | FX: Vasile 9.900 | AA: Sklenar 38.575
NCGA West Regional/WIAC Championships
Full Results | UW-W: 191.850 | UW-LC: 189.700 | UW-S: 188.750 | Winona: 186.750 | UW-EC: 186.525 | UW-O: 185.900 | Gustavus: 185.625 | Hamline: 183.775
VT: O’Donnell 9.700 | UB: Ostrovsky 9.725 | BB: Tkaczuk 9.675 | FX: Pickett 9.825 | AA: O’Donnell 38.525
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Days until the 2017 National Championships