Scrimmage prepares KSU gymnasts for 2010 season

Nick Walton

Blue team edges gold in annual intrasquad meet

The Kent State gymnastics team congratulates each other during the Blue and Gold Intrasquad meet on Friday at the M.A.C. Center. The Flashes’ season will begin Jan. 16 at Pittsburgh. Hannah Potes | Daily Kent Stater

Credit: DKS Editors

The Kent State gymnastics team started its quest for a third straight Mid-American Conference championship against a familiar opponent: themselves.

In a tightly contested meet, the blue team beat the gold team 117.400-116.800 in the Flashes’ annual Blue and Gold Intrasquad meet Friday in the M.A.C. Center.

“As a coaching staff, we were very pleased with what we saw,” Kent State coach Brice Biggin said. “We realize there’s a lot of work to be done, but when you can go out and hit as many routines as we did this early in the season and have the girls look confident, we realize we’ve got a good starting point to really develop from today.”

The blue team started on vault with a score of 29.450 over the gold team’s score of 29.250. Junior gymnast Christina Lenny had the highest mark on vault with a score of 9.900 for the blue team.

Lenny finished with an all-around score of 39.250 and tied three other gymnasts for first in the floor routine.

“We have to replace some big routines from last year, and floor is such an important event,” Biggin said. “The floor team has got to be a team that can solidify a meet and close the deal if we’re ahead – if we’re a little bit behind, then we need to be a good enough floor team that we can beat someone else from behind.”

After not competing last season because of transferring from Eastern Michigan, junior Danielle Durbin was another gymnast who tied for first on floor with a score of 9.850. Durbin credited her performance to practicing earlier and competing in the M.A.C. Center.

“She’s probably the kid who has improved the most this first semester,” Biggin said. “She has worked very hard over on floor, over on bars and beam too. She came in last year from Eastern (Michigan) and took a year to really start working some skills and developing skills, and we’re seeing that start to pay off for her.”

Even though they were closer in all events, the gold team was only able to score higher than the blue team on beam, with a score of 29.300 to 29.250. Junior Christine Abou-Mitri won the individual beam competition with a score of 9.850.

Senior Lydia Barrett led the blue team on bars with a score of 9.800 as the blue team won the routine 29.150 to 29.050.

The Flashes start their season Jan. 16 at Pittsburgh against the Panthers and West Virginia.

“It’s really easy to slack off after Blue and Gold because you think that’s finished and over with,” Barrett said. “We see this as just a starting point. We want to clean up things from here, focus even harder now and right after Christmas just get into the gym and be ready.”

Contact sports reporter Nick Walton at

[email protected]