Gymnastics bests Seattle Pacific but gets nudged out by Central Michigan in tri-meet


After being ranked 24th in the nation Jan. 12, Eastern Michigan University's gymnastics team scored 194.575 in the tri-meet with Central Michigan University and Seattle Pacific University on Saturday. The Eagles were able to beat SPU who scored 187.250, but fell to their MAC rival, who scored 195.875.

“I'm really pleased with how the group handled themselves on the road tonight,” said head coach Jay Santos. “We faced a tough MAC opponent in a high energy environment tonight, and the girls really responded well on the road, hitting 24 for 24 routines. We improved on three out of four events from last week so I'm pretty excited to see that growth from our first meet.”

Senior Anna Willette competed in all four events and was named the all-around champion with a score of 39.0 — a new career-high. She is the 11th Eagle in EMU gymnastics history to reach that score. She tied for first on vault with a 9.8. She received a 9.75 on the beam. On both the floor and uneven bars, she scored 9.725.

The Eagles had a team score of 48.675 on the bars. Freshman Kendall Valentin’s personal best of 9.825 lead EMU and landed her third place in the event. Catie Conrad grabbed seventh place with 9.75. Ninth place went to Anna Willette who scored a 9.725. Carrina Lo Bello and Sydney McEachern tied for 13th with 9.675.

Lacey Rubin and Willette tied to lead the Eagles on the beam. They placed sixth with 9.75 points. Valentin had another career high on the beam. She scored a 9.725 and finished eighth. Lo Bello followed Valentin in ninth place with a 9.7. With a 9.65 Kimberly Ebeyer took 11th and Conrad scored a 9.6 and finished 13th.

The team’s highest event score of the night —48.85 —came when the Eagles went to the floor. Chantelle Loehner had the highest Eagle individual score of the night and personal best when she earned a 9.875. She tied for second. Paulina Miller and Rachel Slocum both scored 9.775 and tied for fourth. Willette took seventh with a score of 9.725. Lo Bello followed behind in eighth place with 9.7, and McEachern took 13th with a 9.6.

On the vault Willette earned a 9.8 and tied for first with three Chippewas. Miller and Valentin scored 9.7 and tied for fifth. Freshman Julia Schwartz debuted with a 9.65 on the vault and landed in ninth. Conrad finished in 10th with a 9.625, McEachern finished in 13th with 9.575.

Coach Santos was happy with how the team performed and a few Eagles stood out to him.

“We had several strong individual performances tonight,” Santos said. “It was great to see Anna put up four strong events, tying for first on vault and winning the all-around. Kendall hit a fantastic bar routine to tie for third, and Chantelle had a career high on floor with a 9.875 that finished a strong floor rotation.”

The Eagles return to the Convocation Center Saturday for the team’s next meet. In the first home MAC match-up of the season, the ladies will take on Bowling Green University. The meet against the nationally ranked number 14 Falcons will start at 4 p.m.

EMU Results (* = personal-best score)

1. Willette, Anna 9.800
5. Miller, Paulina 9.700
5. Valentin, Kendall 9.700
9. Schwartz, Julia 9.650*
10. Conrad, Catie 9.625
13. McEachern, Sydney 9.575


3. Valentin, Kendall 9.825*
7. Conrad, Catie 9.750*
9. Willette, Anna 9.725
11. Paterson, Nikki 9.700
13. Lo Bello, Carrina 9.675
13. McEachern, Sydney 9.675*

6. Rubin, Lacey 9.750*
6. Willette, Anna 9.750
8. Valentin, Kendall 9.725*
9. Lo Bello, Carrina 9.700
11. Ebeyer, Kimberly 9.650
13. Conrad, Catie 9.600

2. Loehner, Chantelle 9.875*
4. Miller, Paulina 9.775
4. Slocum, Rachel 9.775*
7. Willette, Anna 9.725*
8. Lo Bello, Carrina 9.700
13. McEachern, Sydney 9.600
1. Willette, Anna 39.000

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