Aubrey Akers | Sun Staff Photographer

Despite coming up short in the ECACs, the team will send two gymnasts to NCAA Regionals.

March 20, 2017

Gymnastics Finishes 2nd in ECAC Championships After Individual, Team Record-Breaking Performances

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On Saturday, the Cornell gymnastics team travelled to Providence to compete for the ECAC Championship. Despite posting the second highest score in team history, the Red was narrowly edged out by Yale and finished second in the field.

The team’s final score of 194.450 was just .050 points off the school record set earlier this season, and was just shy of Yale’s 194.600. Sophomores Lyanda Dudley and Kaitlin Green each posted 9.850s on the beam, and both Dudley and senior Elana Molotsky posted 9.800s on bars.

Dudley’s all-around score of 39.100 was good for first place, and it was the third time this season she has matched or surpassed her own previous record. It marked the sixth time that Cornell  hit 39.000 or better in the all-around, with Dudley doing it on five occasions.

“The team’s performance this weekend was exceptional,” said assistant coach Melanie Dilliplane. “This meet was a cap to a phenomenal season — the team morale reflects that and the stats reflect that as well.”

Additionally, Cornell won five individual ECAC awards this season — Dilliplane with Assistant Coach of the Year, Dudley Gymnast of the Year, Green Specialist of the Year, and sophomore Kelsy Kurfirst and senior Alexandria Bourgeois split Scholar-Athlete of the Year.

“We are certainly proud of those who won awards,” Dilliplane said. “It shows that this team has real depth — we have gymnasts who excel at both academics and athletics and that makes our whole team a success. It is a reflection on this entire program and one that we take very seriously.”

The season is not over, however. Dudley and Green both qualified for the NCAA Regional Qualifiers in Morgantown, W. Va. — Dudley as an all-around competitor and Green on the beam. This marks the first time that the Red have had multiple gymnasts qualify for the meet. Spots in this meet are given to the top 36 teams in the country, regardless of division.

While Dudley and Green will be competing for Regionals on April 1, the rest of the team is preparing for USA Gymnastics Collegiate Nationals in Seattle on April 7.

“This team has the potential to score a 195 so while we were close to the record this weekend, we know that we definitely have the potential to surpass that score,” Dilliplane said. “[However], there is still room for improvement — all of those little [mistakes] can add up.”