Gymnastics

CMU takes third in Minnesota, behind Golden Gophers, No. 1 Michigan

On Saturday night, the No. 20 gymnastics competed in its first quad meet of the season against No. 1 Michigan, No. 12 Minnesota and Iowa State in Minneapolis, Minn., at the Sports Pavilion.

The nation’s top-ranked team, Michigan, was upset by No. 12 Minnesota as CMU finished in third with Iowa State behind them.

“Coming into tonight, we knew the judges were looking for great performances from great teams,” said gymnastics head coach Jerry Reighard.

The Chippewas scored a 194.650, improving from their last meet at Ball State.

CMU shined on the floor, with junior Emily Heinz, senior Emily LaFontaine, sophomore Halle Moraw and sophomore Taylor Noonan, who was named team MVP, scoring 9.8s or better.

“We did great on floor,” Reighard said. “That’s when we overtook Iowa State and never looked back.”

Unfortunately, Noonan’s night was overshadowed by the hope of a Chippewas upset that could not be accomplished.

“We were a little shaky on the bars,” Reighard said. “We just kept a little bit on the table.”

CMU missed out on some key points that could not be recovered after the Wolverines and the Golden Gophers completed outstanding routines.

“The key difference was stuck dismounts,” Reighard said. “We can’t afford to lose out on those tenths of a point.”

The Chippewas were particularly good on the vault but just failed to complete the stuck landings that the judges were searching for.

CMU’s weakest event was the beams, after coming off a great performance last week against Ball State.

“It was tough because it was completely out of order for us,” Reighard said. “We started on beam today and were a little wobbly, losing out on half a tenth of a point.”

This was the first of two quad meets for the Chippewas, with their next coming on Saturday at the University of Illinois-Chicago. The meet, dubbed “The Michigan-Illinois Challenge,” will pit CMU and Eastern Michigan against UIC and Illinois State.

“It’s a big difference but a good difference,” Reighard said. “It simulates championships.”

Although this meet is one that is highly anticipated by the team, CMU is forced to travel for the third meet in a row.

“The biggest factor is losing one day of practice,” Reighard said. “We completely lose Friday’s practice to travel.”

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