Of all eligible gymnastics teams, the top eight in the country go as a full team to the USAG Collegiate National Meet — Cornell, at seventh, went as a team to Bridgeport, Conn., to compete last weekend.
“Potentially people can compete three days in a row,” associate head coach Melanie Hall said. “On the first day, if your team makes team finals, you compete on the second day as a team again. From that first day of competition, if [you individually are] in the top five, you qualify for the individual finals, which was Sunday.”
Of the top eight teams, two groups of four competed at once. Cornell competed against the University of Bridgeport, the University of Illinois at Chicago and Texas Woman’s University. The top two teams from each group moved on to the team finals.
Cornell placed third in their group and thus did not make the team finals. The Red’s 193.400 score beat Texas Woman’s University’s 193.225, but the University of Bridgeport (195.750) and UIC (195.675) were the two to move on to the finals.
However, senior Kaitlin Green and sophomore Izzy Herczeg both qualified for event finals on beam as the top five individual competitors of their group of four teams.
The two Cornellians both picked up All-American titles. Green won the balance beam national title with a 9.900 score and Herczeg placed ninth with 9.775.
“That win for Kaitlin was her second national beam title,” Hall said. “She also won her sophomore year — she won bars and beam [that year]. She qualified for finals her sophomore, junior and senior years.”
“It’s great — it was the best way I could’ve thought about my last meet going and my last routine ever going,” Green said. “It was really exciting.”
Although the team did not make the overall team finals, there was uncharacteristically low scoring during this meet.
“I think everyone was pretty generally happy,” Green said. “We hit about our season average and [to do this] with the low scoring, I think we had a really good meet.”
Although the scoring may have worked against the gymnasts in some aspects, the team was pleased overall with how the meet went.
“It was a fantastic meet and considering all the injuries and all the setbacks we’ve had, it was a great way to end our season,” Hall said.
This was the last meet this season for the women’s gymnastics team and the last Cornell competition in which the seven seniors will ever participate.The younger members of the team will seek to improve further next year even without their graduating teammates.