Courtesy: Robert Barclay/CMU
The Chippewas head to Eastern Michigan and Bowling Green this weekend looking to follow up on last weekend's team score of 196.600.
Gymnastics Hits the Road for the First Time This Season

MOUNT PLEASANT, Mich. – No. 19 Central Michigan gymnastics hits the road this weekend for two roads meets against Eastern Michigan on Friday, Feb. 7, and at Bowling Green on Sunday, Feb. 9.

The meet at EMU is set to begin at 7 p.m. in Bowen Field House while the BGSU meet is set for 2 p.m. in Anderson Arena.

"This weekend will be a tough challenge for our squad and I am looking forward to seeing how we respond," CMU head coach Jerry Reighard said. "I was excited about how well we performanced last weekend because we showed what type of team we can be when we perform up to our potential. Now the important thing is to go 196 or better every week so we show people that we belong among the top 12 nationally."

Last season, CMU defeated the Eagles in Mount Pleasant, 196.000-193.500. Central Michigan also teamed up with Eastern Michigan last week for the Illinois vs. Michigan Invite, beating both Illinois teams in the state vs. state challenge.

Eastern Michigan recorded their highest team score since 2004 at the Illinois vs. Michigan Invite, finishing the meet in second place with a 194.800. Along with the Chippewas, Eastern Michigan recorded season highs on all four events.

The Eagles are 2-5 this season, 0-2 in the MAC, and currently sit in fourth in the MAC and No. 40 nationally.  Eastern Michigan sophomore Khadijah Hudson sits in third place on vault in the MAC with an average of 9.808, right behind CMU’s Brittany Petzold and Kirsten Petzold.

Bowling Green is 3-2 this season and 3-0 in the conference. Junior Jamila Ali ranks third on beam in the MAC, behind CMU’s Taylor Noonan and Halle Moraw. Sophomore Alyssa Nocella is third in the all-around in the conference.

Last season, the Falcons travelled to Mount Pleasant where they were defeated by the Chippewas, 196.025-194.500.

Central Michigan Notes:
• Central Michigan's strong performance at the Illinois vs. Michigan Invite led the team to be ranked No. 19 nationally. CMU won the quad meet against Eastern Michigan, Illinois State and UIC with a season-high score of 196.600. That finish is also the highest team score of the Mid-American Conference this season and CMU’s fourth-best team score in program history. The Chippewas are 7-0 this season.

• Central Michigan senior Brittany Petzold is ranked No. 21 in the nation in the all-around, leading CMU to be ranked as a team on three of the four events. Central Michigan gymnastics holds No. 25 national ranking on bars and No. 16 on beam and floor.

• The Chippewas set season highs on all four events at the Illinois vs. Michigan Invite. CMU finished vault with a team score of 49.050, bars with a 49.175, beam with a 49.050 and floor with a 49.325. As a team, Central Michigan is first in the MAC on three of the four events. Kent State leads CMU on vault by an average of .025.

• CMU not only set season highs on all four events at the Illinois vs. Michigan Invite but also had individual gymnasts finish the meet with career highs. Sophomore Karlee Teet set career highs on vault (9.800) and bars (9.850). Teet tied freshmen Kirstin Stambaugh on vault, placing them both in third place against the Eagles, Flames and Redbirds. Junior Preslee Harrald had an outstanding meet setting career highs on beam (9.825) and floor (9.900). Junior Taylor Noonan had the highest score of the meet on Saturday, finishing first on beam with a 9.925, tying her career high.