SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The Central Michigan gymnastics team won the Sacramento State quadrangular meet on Friday with its best score in an opener since 2004.
The Chippewas tallied a 193.575 to win the meet with Sacramento State earning second (185.875), Alaska Anchorage finished third (185.725) and Wisconsin-LaCrosse took fourth (180.050)
“I thought we competed really well and I think our team enjoyed finally being in a competitive environment,” head coach Jerry Reighard said. “We found out a lot about ourselves and how this team comes together in a meet situation. The best thing about this meet is we got off to a solid start to the season but I can tell that our gymnasts feel they could have been even better tonight and I think that will motivate us the next few weeks.”
Central Michigan dominated the meet, with individuals winning three of the four events along with CMU earning the top three spots in the all-around. The squad’s freshman made a big impact with Alyssa Wilson winning bars (9.800) and Emily Heinz tying for the top spot on beam (9.775). Darrian Tissenbaum won an event for the first time in her CMU career on vault (9.825) while Andrea de la Garza won the all-around (38.725) and tied for first on beam (9.775).
“Our freshmen class really showed what they were capable of tonight,” Reighard said. “How your freshmen perform in the season opener is always a big unknown and I feel this group is well on the way to living up to the high expectation we have for them. I was also really proud of Darrian because she worked hard during the offseason and it was great to see that hard work pay off.”
The Chippewas began the night on beam and posted a solid 48.550 with Heinz and de la Garza winning the event. CMU would end up taking five of the top six places on beam as Kristin Teubner tied for third (9.725).
CMU’s second event was floor and the squad struggled with a 47.925. Three gymnasts, Cheryl Conlin, Brittany Petzold and de la Garza, earned a 9.625 to tie for CMU’s top score.
Central Michigan bounced back on vault with a 48.450 with Tissenbaum’s new career-high leading the team. Brittany Taylor took second (9.750) and Meaghan McWhorter tied for third (9.725) in her first competition at CMU.
The Maroon and Gold wrapped up the meet by earning a 48.650 on bars, its top event score of the night. Chippewas took the top five spots with Wilson earning first, Tissenbaum taking second (9.750) and Teubner and de la Garza tying for third (9.725).
The Chippewas open Mid-American Conference action next Friday, Jan. 14, at Ball State. The meet is set to start at 7 p.m.