Starting off on the right foot

Josh Narotsky and Josh Narotsky

The women’s gymnastics team participated in their second meet outside of the friendly confines of the Eppler Complex on Sunday, defeating Northern Illinois 190.2-188.225.

“We performed very well considering it was a road meet. It was good for all the young team members to get some experience in a different team’s gym,” commented junior Jacque Bernhardt.

One of the standout performers for the Falcons was Junior Jholeen Ponce. She finished first on both vault and beam, with scores of 9.825 and 9.675 respectively. Her vault score set a new career high, exceeding the score of 9.750 which was set just last week.

Another star performer was Freshman Megan Chronister, who ranked second among the Falcons on the beam with a score of 9.575, and third on the bars, with a score of 9.400. Chronister said the success in the meet didn’t surprise her, as she felt she had a solid week of practice under her belt.

“I didn’t start to practice really well until later in the week, but once I started getting into a solid rhythm during practice, I knew I would do well in the meet.” Chronister said.

She also added that although she did well in Sunday’s meet, there is still room for improvement. “I’m still trying to clean up my routine and work out all the little problems.”

Freshman Morgan Balzer, who has burst onto the scene with top 3 finishes in both floor and vault already this season, continued to perform at a high level on Sunday. Balzer recorded the highest floor score on the team at 9.700.

“I’ve been really pleased with all my early success,” said Balzer. “It’s taken some time for me to adjust, but this meet I felt for the first time that I wasn’t nervous and that I knew my routine well.”

She also added a score of 9.550 on the bars, good for second best on the team.

With the victory the Falcons improve to 2-1 in the MAC and 3-1 overall.

The Falcons return home next week to take on Ball State at 7 p.m. in Eppler Complex.

NOTES: Chronister and Ponce were awarded the Mid-American Conference Gymnast of the Week and Specialist of the Week honors respectively. Both recognitions came after the Falcons downed Northern Illinois 190.200-188.225 on Sunday.