Feb. 1, 2013
EAST LANSING, Mich. - Michigan State gymnastics led after the first rotation, but could not hold on and had to post a loss to No. 10 Minnesota, 194.325 to 192.625 on Friday at Jenison Field House.
"I think we made some real improvements in the fact that we came in on vault and fell on the first run and then came back on the next five," said head coach Kathie Klages. "I think we made an improvement on bars, even though we had a fall. We had a definite increase in our confidence-level and bringing what we've doing in practice to the competition. I thought the first half of the meet was pretty good and then on beam, we just fell apart and that's unacceptable."
MSU celebrated the seventh-annual Jan Howard Memorial Breast Cancer Meet against Minnesota. The meet is in honor of Jan Howard, the mother of former Spartan gymnast Angela Howard Montie, and is a tradition that started in 2007.
"It's a great honor to have the meet named after her," said Angela Montie, daughter of Jan Howard. "But I think the bigger honor and what she would appreciate is that it is used to try and educate people about early detection and breast cancer awareness and that when detected early, it has the highest survival rate. So if this meet and telling her story can help any one else, then that is really the true honor."
Michigan State took the lead after the first rotation, posting a team score of 48.600 on the vault. Senior captain Taira Neal was first in the event with a 9.850. Freshman Nicola Deans tied her career-best score of 9.775 to finish fourth. Alina Cartwright and Dani Levy both earned a score of 9.775. Minnesota recorded a team score of 48.725 on the vault, with their highest score coming from Kayla Slechta with a score of 9.825.
On uneven bars, the Spartans posted a team score of 48.025, led by Cartwright with a career-high score of 9.825 to place second. Freshman Lisa Burt and Neal recorded a score of 9.800, tying for third. Burt also tied her career best. The Gophers earned a team score of 48.375 on the event, led by Janell Campbell with a 9.850.
MSU struggled on the balance beam, having to count two falls before recording a team score of 47.725. Cartwright, Brittany Holmes and Ashley Noll all posted a 9.725 to lead MSU and tie for fifth. On the beam, Minnesota posted a team score of 48.825. The top score for the Gophers was a 9.850 from Shannon Golich.
The Spartans wrapped up competition with a 48.275 team score on the floor exercise. Burt posted the highest score for the Spartans with a 9.775, finishing fourth overall. Alex Pace and Holmes both earned scores of 9.750, which tied for fifth. The Gophers recorded a team score of 48.400 led by Kylie Schermann with a score of 9.875.
In the all-around competition, Minnesota's Lindsay Mable took the win with a score of 38.850. Cartwright finished second with a score of 38.575.
Next up, the Spartans will travel to take on Iowa on Friday, Feb. 8 at 8 p.m.