Gymnasts enjoy victory at home

Katie Corbut

Gymnastics teams stays on roll

Barrett and Abou-Mitri shine for the Flashes.

A sign in the stands read: “It may be cold outside, but this team is on Fire.”

But even though the Kent State gymnastics team defeated George Washington 193.950 to 188.600 Friday in the M.A.C. Center, the performance was lukewarm at best.

The Flashes opened the competition strong, sweeping the Colonials in the first two events.

Junior Christina Lenny placed first in the vault with a 9.850, followed by senior Lydia Barrett and freshman Lauren Wozniak who tied for second with a 9.8. Junior Christine Abou-Mitri scored 9.775 to finish third.

The Flashes’ lead increased with a first-place finish by sophomore Erin Rothrock, who scored a 9.925 in the bars competition. Abou-Mitri scored a 9.825 to earn second, followed by freshmen teammates Rachel Guida and Lindsay Runyan, who took third at 9.8.

And then came the beam.

The Flashes recorded two falls on the beam, leaving the Colonials room to capitalize on the opportunity to come back. However, Kent State still managed to escape with an Abou-Mitri tie for first (9.725), and senior Carly Conroy finished third (9.65).

Kent State coach Brice Biggin said he was disappointed in the team’s inability to improve on their beam routines.

“Once again, we didn’t build on beam,” Biggin said. “This will hurt our national ranking. We’ll give up three to five places nationally because of beam.”

On the floor, the Flashes seemed to redeem themselves with a 48.800 event score.

Abou-Mitri won her second event of the night with a 9.850, followed by Lenny (9.825) and Barrett (9.8).

Abou-Mitri won the meet with an all-around score of 39.175 and Lenny placed second (38.425).

Despite the victory, Biggin criticized the team for its “gutless performance,” saying the gymnasts were very weak mentally.

“If we perform like that next week, we’ll get our butts kicked,” Biggin said. “If you’re going to fall, at least be aggressive.”

Biggin said he believes the meet was a result of poor training in the gym this week.

“They didn’t help each other out in practice, they weren’t cheering for each other,” Biggin said. “It came back to show today. You just can’t perform like that.”

Barrett expressed concern for the Flashes as well, adding that they should have done better in front of their home crowd.

“We need to keep doing better at every meet,” she said. “Especially at home, we want to take advantage of the crowd and atmosphere. We have a chance at nationals, but we need to be on our game.”

Contact sports reporter Katie Corbut at [email protected].