Head over heels

Cj Watson and Cj Watson

Despite all the ups and downs of a tough season, the BG gymnastics team has always remained upbeat no matter the circumstance.

“Throughout this season our team has been through a lot,” said freshman Danielle Wishart. “Our main motivation to stay positive was to view it like a challenge.”

The first contest of the year was a tri-meet against Michigan and Iowa, in which the Falcons came up short to start the season at 0-2. The Falcons faced the challenge of regrouping and coming back strong to start the Mid-American Conference schedule.

And did they ever.

The Falcons went on a tear, winning four straight conference meets against Northern Illinois, Western Michigan, Ball State and Eastern Michigan. During that streak, BG also notched a win against Illinois-Chicago.

The Falcons proved that they perform well on the road, winning three of five meets outside of Ohio.

When everything was on the up and up, the team faced their biggest challenge of the year.

During a tri-meet with Western Michigan and Illinois-Chicago, senior Queenita Gamble went down as she ruptured her Achilles tendon. The team tried to regroup after the injury but was unable and finished the meet in third place.

BG went on to drop their next two meets against West Virginia and the MAC regular-season champions, Kent State. The Mountaineers and Golden Flashes dominated both meets and they were never very close from beginning to end.

Despite the losing streak, the Falcons remained near the top of the MAC standings. Going into their final meet, they were tied with Central Michigan for second place just behind Kent State.

During the tough times, the seniors and coaches proved that they were there for the team through thick and thin.

“Both Kerrie [Beach] and [assistant coach Craig Ballard] have not only been great coaches, but they have also been our support system throughout the year,” Wishart said. “Through the adversities, they have always believed in us as individuals and as a team.”

“Our seniors are amazing and know how to be there for someone,” said sophomore Kasey Fillmore. “They have been so strong through everything we have gone through this year which just brings out their leadership. You just know that everyone of their hearts is so into this team.”

Last weekend, the Falcons participated in their final home meet of the regular season against Central Michigan. Although BG had their best performance in five years, they came up short to the Chippewas. The Falcons scored a season-high 194.375 points in the meet, which was more than a point higher than their previous season-high.

Despite the loss, Fillmore said she is confident that the team’s strong performance last weekend will prepare them for the MAC Championships on Saturday at Anderson Arena.

“Having a great meet under our belts the week before MACs just made everyone more excited for next weekend,” Fillmore said. “Now we just can focus on the little things heading into the championships knowing we can do great.”

Although the team has faced much opposition throughout the season, especially near the tail end, the group remains positive and focused on what lies ahead.

“The best part about our team is that we never give up and we keep fighting,” Wishart said.