Gymansts look to refocus

Katie Corbut

Mistakes must be minimized

Last week’s meet against George Washington left much to be desired for Kent State’s gymnastics team. The Flashes counted two falls on beam, which docked one point from the final team score.

The gymnasts expect to regain their focus this Saturday when the team travels to Cedar City, Utah, to compete against the Southern Utah Thunderbirds.

Kent State coach Brice Biggin said a bright spot in last week’s meet against the Colonials was sophomore Erin Rothrock, who scored a nearly perfect 9.925 on bars.

“When we’re talking a score that high, the deductions are so minute,” he said. “One judge had (Rothrock) at a 9.95, so you’re looking at a half-tenth away from perfection.”

Biggin said he feels the gymnasts have been underachieving and with Southern Utah’s scores have climbing recently, the Thunderbirds should be considered a threat.

“They’re a good team,” Biggin said. “They’re scoring in the 195s and are a good, quality opponent. We’re going to have to go out there and do a good job.”

Biggin said team captains senior Lydia Barrett and junior Christine Abou-Mitri held a team meeting concerning last week’s performance.

“We didn’t do the job we’re supposed to do,” Barrett said. “It’s time to refocus. We need to do what we’re here to do, show what kind of gymnastics we can do.”

Barrett will be graduating in May, and the coaching staff will have their hands full replacing her talent and consistency as a team leader.

“You know when she goes out there that she’s going to hit her routine,” Biggin said. “She doesn’t get overworked, she can just go out and hit no matter what.”

Barrett contributes on vault, bars and floor. Both she and Biggin agree that helping the team on the beam would be optimal, however, an injured back will not permit her to do so.

Throughout her collegiate career, Barrett said gymnastics has taught her to keep focused on what it takes to correct her flaws.

“When you’re at your lowest point, you have to figure out how to pick yourself up,” she said.

Contact sports reporter Katie Corbut at [email protected].