Gymnastics Bested by Central Michigan, 194.475-193.550
MOUNT PLEASANT, Mich. – The Kent State gymnastics team (2-2, 2-2 MAC) battled tough Saturday afternoon against Mid-American Conference leading Central Michigan, but the Chippewas were steady throughout to edge the Golden Flashes, 194.475-193.550.
"We had a good week of practice on the beam, but we just cannot fall," said head coach Brice Biggin. "We need people step up and do something when we really need it.
"We do have some of our gymnasts doing a great job," continued Biggin. "But when not enough of them are doing a great job at the same time… when the team fails, everyone fails."
Within striking distance and trailing 145.825 to 145.700 heading into the final rotation, the Golden Flashes needed to be strong on the beam. But two falls early in the rotation derailed Kent State's chance for the road win. Sophomore Marie Case (Erie, Pa.) finished the dual with a 9.775 on the beam to win the event.
Through the first two rotations, Kent State matched Central Michigan 48.725 on the vault. Freshman Whitnee Johnson (Columbia, Mo.) was victorious on the vault, leading the field with a 9.850. Teammate and senior Rachel Goldenberg (Doylestown, Pa.) tied for second place with a 9.825.
The Golden Flashes trailed on the bars despite a pair of 9.800 efforts by junior Rachel Guida (Cumberland, R.I.) and senior Erin Rothrock (York, Pa.), which tied for second place. Central Michigan had four of the top six scores on bars to take the lead.
Kent State was unable to gain ground in the third rotation, posting a 48.300 on the floor to Central Michigan's 48.350 on the beam. The Chippewas then rallied with four of the best six scores on the floor exercise to pull away.
The Golden Flashes are back in action Sunday, Feb. 19 when Kent State hosts Northern Illinois at 1 p.m. for the team's annual Flip for the Cure fundraiser for breast cancer.