Gymnastics defeats CMU in emotional match

Sean Blevins Sports Reporter

The Kent State gymnastics team (4-5, 3-3 Mid-American Conference) put on a show at the annual Pink Meet, as they scored a season-high 196.375 to beat Central Michigan University. 

KSU was dealing with the loss of its long-time gymnastics coach and program co-founder, Rudy Bachna, who passed away on Saturday. 

“Today was an emotional day for a lot of us,” coach Brice Biggin said. “For the girls to come out, compete like they did and stay strong as a team was huge for us. This was the best I have seen them compete as a team in a long time.”

Sophomore Rachel DeCavitch won two individual event titles, setting a career-high score of 9.900 on bars and on floor. 

The Flashes posted a season-high as a team on vault with a 49.950. Junior Cami Klein and sophomore Olivia Amodei both had career-high scores of 9.825, which placed them tied for fourth. 

“When you score over a 196, you literally have to have your entire team have a great meet and that’s what happened,” Biggin said. “DeCavitch had a great day. Amodei and Klein did well. Those three were the leaders of the pack today.”

They also had their highest score of the season on bars, with a 49.175. DeCavitch won that event with a 9.900. Junior Madison Iannuzzo had a personal best 9.825. Amodei also posted her best score, a 9.825. 

On beam, KSU had its first 49.000+ score of the season. Freshman Sarah Haxton tied for the individual title with a 9.875. Sophomore Jackie Harker came in third with a 9.850. 

DeCavitch won her second event title on floor with a 9.900. Sophomore Karlie Franz finished in fourth place with a 9.850. 

The Golden Flashes will hit the road to take on Northern Illinois on Saturday, Feb. 27. 

“For them to put on that showing under these circumstances, it just means so much to the program and our alumni,” Biggin said. “I couldn’t be more proud.” 

Sean is a sports reporter. Contact him at [email protected].