Gymnastics Shows Improvement Yet Is Edged By Hamline In Home Opener Posted on January 16th, 2015 by

Alex Kopp performs on the bars in Friday night's dual loss to Hamline. Photo courtesy of CJ Siewert - Sport PiX.

St. Peter, Minn. – The Gustavus Adolphus gymnastics team suffered a narrow loss to Hamline University in its home-opener on Friday night at the Sponberg Gymnastics Studio. The Gusties improved nearly two full points from their season-opening performance at the UW-Claire Invitational, recording a 174.550 this evening in their home gym. The Pipers picked up their first victory of the season, winning the dual with a score of 175.475.

“We had a good showing tonight and met the goals we set for ourselves heading into the meet,” said Head Coach Aryn Bell. “We wanted to score a 174.000 and we turned in a 174.550, so that’s encouraging especially this early in our schedule. The team has exceeded expectations, added bigger skills, and cleaned some aspects up from last year. The girls are having fun and are determined to build the program back from the ground up.”

The Gusties posted individual event scores of 44.9000 on the vault, 40.975 on the uneven parallel bars, 43.400 on the balance beam, and 45.275 on the floor. Gustavus’s scores on the bars and beam both topped its marks from the season-opener last week. Hamline recorded a 44.500 on the vault, 44.000 on the bars, 42.750 on the beam, and 44.225 on the floor.

Jaimie Niedermayer performs her floor exercise routine. Photo courtesy of Sport PiX.

Jaimie Niedermayer performs her floor exercise routine. Photo courtesy of Sport PiX.

The Gusties benefited from a pair of event wins coming from Alexandra Kopp (So., Wayzata, Minn.) and Lauren Kershner (So., Marine, Ill.). Kopp won the vault with a score of 9.275, while Kershner won the floor with a 9.325.

“Alex had a productive all-around meet and that’s what we are going to need from her all season long,” Bell said. “She earned us big points with a win on the vault and a pair of second place finishes.”

“Lauren had a great performance on the floor to pick up her first victory,” continued Bell. “Both Lauren and Alex had nice all-around showings and I’m excited to see that continue as we move ahead.”

Kopp scored a 8.900 to take second on the bars, a 9.250 to finish second on the floor, and a 8.650 to come in fourth on the beam. Her four combined results granted her a 36.075 score in the all-around.

Kershner finished fourth on the vault with a 8.950, fifth on the beam with a 8.625, and ninth on the bars with a 7.950 to give her an all-around score of 34.850.

Also reaching the podium for Gustavus was Emily Anderson (Fy., Mendota Heights, Minn.) and Rachel Thiner (Jr., Sioux Falls, S.D.). Anderson scored a 9.050 to place second on the vault, and Thiner registered a 9.050 to finish second on the beam and a 9.175 to take third on the floor.

The bars were won by Sarah Dyer who scored a 9.150, and the beam was won by Courtney Morrison who recorded a 9.150.

“I feel good about where this team is at as we move into the heart January,” Bell said. “We’ve met our goals both times out, but we still have a lot of improvements that need to be made. The atmosphere in the gym was great tonight and I thought the girls fed off that energy. We get such great support at home and hopefully we continue to build off that next week.”

The Gustavus gymnastics team will be back on the mats Friday, Jan. 23 when it hosts UW-Stout in the Sponberg Gymnastics Studio at 6:30 p.m.

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