Upon reaching the halfway point in its season, the Cornell women’s gymnastics team continued its winning ways with a victory at the Ithaca College Invitational this weekend. In accumulating 182.85 points, the Cornell gymnasts edged Ithaca (180.925) and Cortland (180.90), while Ursinus, University of Wisconsin-Stout, Brockport, and Wilson rounded out the competition.
Injuries to sophomore Abby Vedder and junior Laura DeForest handicapped the team, and head coach Paul Beckwith was forced to make some last minute changes.
“With Abby hurt we had a lot of people jumping in on events,” Beckwith said. “It was a tough fight, but I was very pleased with the results.”
One of the alterations was placing freshman Stefanie Daehler as the sole Cornell representative in the all-around competition. The surprise was welcomed, however, and she took first place, winning the floor exercise with 9.625 points and leading the team to a 1-2-3 sweep of that event.
Sophomores Shannon Weiman (9.60) and Meredith Long (9.55) took second and third in the event, respectively.
Another freshman, Denise Hurd, won the vault with 9.5 points. Right behind her was sophomore Natasha Elkovitch, taking fourth place in the event with a score of 9.35.
Even though the team was not at full strength, the Big Red nearly set records in both the team vaulting and on the beam.
“It was a lot of fun,” Daehler said. “I know that we’ll do better and better because the freshmen are getting more confident.”
This potent mixture of success and poise should provided a boost heading in the Ivy League championships next weekend. Yale University will host the meet, and with no clear favorite, the tumblers have high hopes.
Archived article by Jon Goldberg