Gymnastics sends three to regionals

Even though the Kent State gymnastics team didn’t qualify for NCAA Central Regionals, some of its top gymnasts did.

Junior tri-captains Kristin Peters and Jill Kowalski and sophomore Laci Hendress qualified for regionals, to be held April 14 in Tuscaloosa, Ala.

The top six teams from each region qualify; the Flashes finished seventh. This marks the second year in a row the team missed the regionals.

The three gymnasts who qualified were consistent performers in the team’s 11-4 (5-1 MAC) season.

Kowalski had the highest all-around average in the MAC this season, winning the event in seven meets. She also won the MAC Gymnast of the Week award twice. She will compete in the all-around at regionals.

Peters will compete on bars and beam at regionals. She was first in the MAC in those events this season and won titles in both at the MAC Gymnastics Championship Saturday. She was also recently named MAC Specialist of the Year and All-MAC First Team, as well as Specialist of the Week earlier this season.

Hendress will compete in the floor exercise at regionals. She was tops in the MAC on floor this year, winning the event in six meets and tying for second at the MAC Championships.

This is the second consecutive year that Peters and Kowalski have qualified for regionals. Peters tied for 20th competing on the bars at last year’s regionals, and Kowalski finished in 18th place on the all-around.

– Doug Gulasy