Gymnastics beats rival Western Michigan

All-around sophomore Kylie Fagan performs her routine on the beam during Centrals Royal Rumble and Tumble Friday evening at McGuirk Arena at McGuirk Arena. Central won 194.800 - 194.025. Brooke Mayle/Assistant Photo Editor

Gymnastics tied a season-high 195.875 to beat rival Western Michigan Sunday after a tough loss at Kent State last weekend.

The Broncos came into Sunday's meet after a big victory at Ball State, who upset CMU earlier in the year.

Junior Meaghan McWhorter and senior Emily LaFontaine strengthened the lineup with experience to give some of the extra tenths of points. LaFontaine scored a pair of 9.85s, and McWhorter scored an almost-perfect 9.9 on vault.

“For us, it adds credibility and strength to the lineup," said head coach Jerry Reighard. "I was very impressed.”

The Chippewas came into Sunday's meet after a tough loss at Kent State last week.

Reighard explained the “red zone” as gymnast that break the 9.9 mark in an event. McWhorter joined the likes of teammates freshman Kirsten Petzold, sophomore Taylor Noonan and sophomore Kylie Fagan.

“Practice was very different Monday," Reighard said. "It was not easy they paid the price for the mistakes they made last week."

The team started on bars and made their mark by sticking the dismounts. Fagan and LaFontaine took the top spots to start the meet.

“The stuck dismounts gave us the crucial tenths of points we needed," Reighard said. "We didn’t get that last meet."

The Chippewas started the meet out with a bang and never looked back, finishing every event with two gymnasts in the top three.

“It was a big learning process today for us,” Reighard said. “The pressure got to us a week ago, and today we applied the pressure to the opponent.”

CMU enjoyed a great team performance by scoring an overall average score of 9.76.

“They had a confident approach,” Reighard said. “The entire bar team especially did a great job to score over a 49 on the road.”

The Chippewas made a statement by overcoming a tough loss last week to avoid back-to-back losses and gaining a crucial victory to stay alive for a possible MAC championship.

“We learned a lot from Kent State; we definitely took control here,” Reighard said. “We learned a lot of growth, maturity and composure ,and things just started to flow really well.”

The team will be home for a 2 p.m. competition with MAC opponent Bowling Green this upcoming Saturday.

They are looking to better their MAC record against a Falcons team that struggled early in the year but are coming to Mount Pleasant with a two-meet win streak.


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