The Eastern Michigan Eagles gymnastics team has a packed Mid-American Conference schedule for this weekend as they travel to Kalamazoo Friday night to take on the Broncos of Western Michigan and then return home for a senior day meet against Ball State.
The Eagles are off to a strong 8-1 record and are currently in first in the MAC with a 194.642.
Western Michigan is currently sixth in the MAC with an average score of 193.460 and Ball State is at the bottom of the MAC with an average of 193.117.
On floor, the Eagles will rely heavily on redshirt senior Chantelle Loehner to continue to post strong scores, especially coming off of her personal best score of 9.900 on Feb. 15. They will also look for freshman Rachel Slocum who also posted a personal best score of 9.850.
The Broncos will look for freshman Jessica Juncaj to lead them on the floor again after posting a 9.725 in their last meet on Feb. 13.
For Ball State, they will look for Erin Patchey to give them another 9.875 effort on Sunday. Also look for sister of Eagles junior Kimberly Ebeyer, Sarah, to give the Cardinals a strong showing.
On bars, the Eagles will look for the contiued success of Anna Willette, Catie Conrad and Nikki Paterson who all scored 9.775 on Feb. 15 but will also need their bottom half of their lineup to post stronger scores than they did on Sunday as Sydney McEachern, Lacey Rubin and Carrina Lo Bello all scored under 9.500.
Jessie Peszek of Western Michigan will look to carry the Broncos on the bars again after posting a second straight week of 9.800.
For Ball State, they will look for the current second place standing Jordyn Penny to post another 9.825 score.
On vault, the Eagles will look for seniors Anna Willette and Carrina Lo Bello to continue their strong scores. Lo Bello is coming off a personal best score of 9.800 and Willette had a 9.775. Willette currently sits tied for first in the MAC and Lo Bello comes in at third.
For the Broncos, look for freshman Kelsey Hood looks to bounce back on the vault after posting a 9.700 on Feb. 13 but has a career best of 9.825.
For Ball State, look for Denasiha Christian to bounce back after posting a season best 9.850 earlier this year.
Finally, on beam, the Eagles will look for sophomore Natalie Gervais to keep rolling after posting a career best of 9.850 on Feb. 15. Also look for redshirt freshman Lacey Rubin and freshman Catie Conrad to have strong outings as well. Senior Anna Willette will look to have a bounce back routine after posting an 8.950 on Feb. 15.
Both Ball State and Western Michigan have the second place girls on beam. Cardinal Baylee Bell and Bronco Kayla Weber both are tied with a 9.750 average score.
The Eagles will honor their five seniors (Chantelle Loehner, Anna Willette, Carrina Lo Bello, Polly Miller and Nikki Paterson) on Sunday afternoon and will look to continue their hot start and improve to 10-1 on the season.
Projected lineups for Eastern Michigan:
1. Carrina Lo Bello (last week 9.800)
2. Catie Conrad (last week 9.700)
3. Sydney McEachern (last week 9.750)
4. Polly Miller (last week 9.700)
5. Julia Schwartz (last week 9.750)
6. Anna Willette (last week 9.775)
1. Carrina Lo Bello (last week 9.100)
2. Sydney McEachern (last week 9.400)
3. Nikki Paterson (last week 9.775)
4. Catie Conrad (last week 9.775)
5. Anna Willette (last week 9.775)
6. Kendall Valentin (DNP 9.785 avg)
1. Carrina Lo Bello (last week 9.725)
2. Catie Conrad (last week 9.750)
3. Natalie Gervais (last week 9.850)
4. Kimberly Ebeyer (last week 9.750)
5. Lacey Rubin (last week 9.825)
6. Anna Willette (last week 8.950)
1. Carrina Lo Bello (last week 9.775)
2. Sydney McEachern (last week 9.775)
3. Rachel Slocum (last week 9.850)
4. Anna Willette (last week 9.775)
5. Taylor Young (last week 9.725)
6. Chantelle Loehner (last week 9.900)
Follow Andrew Mascharka on Twitter: @amascharka