Champaign, Ill. - The Michigan State gymnastics team finished fourth at the Big Five Meet in Champaign, Ill. on Saturday afternoon. The Spartans finished with a score of 194.650, while Nebraska won the meet with a score of 196.650.
“At this point, we know what we are capable of and tonight wasn’t it,” said interim head coach Mike Rowe. “So, going into next weekend in the early session, it’s a clean-slate for us. Let’s do what we can do and see where we land. Anybody can win and place on the podium from either session. It’s a clean slate for everybody.”
MSU finished third on the floor exercise with a season-high score of 49.150, led by seniors Kira Frederick and Elena Lagoski, who each earned a 9.875 to place tied for seventh. Lindsey Lemke finished 14th with a 9.825 and Molly Hoerner-O’Malley scored a career-high 9.775.
“We started out decent on vault and we showed some consistency there,” said Rowe. “We came back stronger than ever on floors after a few earlier falls, and we knew we could do that. Molly stepped up on floor with an amazing performance for a career high.”
Lemke continued to shine on bars this season where she led MSU with a 9.825 to finish tied for sixth. The Spartans earned a team score of 48.425 on the bars and Lagoski finished tied for 14th with a 9.775.
Hailee Westney was the top Spartan finisher on the balance beam, as she tied for fourth with a routine that earned her a 9.850. Victoria Huehn and Kira Frederick scored 9.775 to finish tied for 12th, followed by Alexandra Hoyer, who placed 16th with a 9.725.
“Doing the math and counting our two falls, one on bars and one on beam, would have put us right where we needed to be and give us a score to get in the night session at the Big Ten Championship. Things happen, so we just need to come back in the gym on Monday and regroup and give it our best next weekend.”
Senior Nicola Deans finished tenth in the vault with a 9.800 and the Spartans finished with a team score of 48.675 on the apparatus.
Up next, MSU will head to Piscataway, N.J. for the Big Ten Championships on March 18 on the campus of Rutgers and will compete in the noon session of the meet.