Courtesy: Courtesy Photo
Taylor Bolender leads CMU into action against Ball State on Sunday, Jan. 26, at 1 p.m.
Gymnastics Opens MAC Action with Ball State

MOUNT PLEASANT, Mich. – Central Michigan gymnastics opens their Mid-American Conference schedule at home against Ball State on Sunday, Jan. 26, at 1 p.m.

Last year, the Chippewas traveled to BSU for their MAC opener and saw CMU’s 34-meet MAC winning streak snapped against the Cardinals. The final score landed the Chippewas a few tenths behind Ball State, 194.500-194.175.

“I think our team is looking forward to getting into conference action,” CMU head coach Jerry Reighard said. “We know that we made too many mistakes last week and I want to see our this group responds this week. We have not put together four strong events yet this season, so that will be a big focus against Ball State.”

Ball State has competed in three meets this season withtwo home meets (Illinois State and Iowa) and one meet on the road at the Kentucky Classic. The underclassmen create a majority of the Ball State roster this season, welcoming back seven sophomores and bringing in eight freshman. The Cardinals also return six juniors and two seniors, Kristin Vignola and Leah Wilson.

Ball State is competing under first-year head coach Joanna Saleem for the 2014 season. Last year Ball State went 3-3 in the MAC and came in 7th at the MAC Championship competition.

Ball State heads to Northern Illinois for their first MAC team competition of the season on Friday, Jan. 24.

Central Michigan Notes:
• Sunday’s meet is “Flip for a Cure” as CMU gymnastics work to raise money and awareness for cancer research. Fans can donate by buying pink gear before the meet which will include a free ticket. They can also visit a donation site by clicking here. CMU gymnasts and coaches will wear pink gear before and during the meet.

• Last week Central Michigan beat William and Mary as junior Halle Moraw led CMU to a win against the Tribes (193.950-188.700). Moraw finished first on floor exercise with a season best of 9.900 and tied Taylor Noonan and Emily Heinz for a first place finish on beam (9.775). The Chippewas finished the meet on floor with a season best score of 49.125. Moraw dominated the top spot on floor, followed by Preslee Harrald in second and Taylor Bolender in third.

• Junior Halle Moraw was named this week’s Members First Credit Union Scholar-Athlete of the week and the Mid-American Conference Co-Specialist of the Week. This is the second straight week that a CMU gymnast was honored by the MAC, after Emily Heinz was named MAC Gymnast of the Week last week. Moraw’s performance in last weeks meet against William and Mary proved her strength and leadership as a returning gymnast for the Chippewas. This is the second time in Moraw has been named Specialist of the Week.

• Central Michigan gymnastics has started their season strong with three home meet wins. The Chippewas will compete in a series of five home meets in a row before hitting the road to Ypsilanti, Mich., where they will go head to head with Eastern Michigan. Central Michigan will host the Illinois/Michigan Invite on Saturday, Feb. 1.