EMU gymnasts named to All-MAC teams

The Mid-American Conference announced the women’s gymnastics All-MAC first and second teams Wednesday afternoon.

Among the winners were Eastern Michigan sophomores Kendall Valentin and Rachel Slocum on the first team and Catie Conrad on the second team. The teams were decided by regional qualifying scores on each event, along with all-around scores.

"Being first team All-MAC is such an honor,” Slocum said. “Catie, Kendall and I are very close so to accept these honors beside my best friends makes it even more special. Although the individual recognition is nice it means nothing compared to how successful we have been as a team. I am excited to compete this weekend at MAC’s and show what we've been preparing to do this whole season!"

Slocum has recorded a career-high on the vault this year and tied her career-high on the floor exercise. She is currently ranked first in the MAC on the vault.

Valentin scored a career-high 9.925 on the uneven bars at a meet against Michigan on Feb. 8 and is currently ranked first in the MAC on the bars. She has competed all season on beam and vault as well. Valentin also competed on floor for the majority of the season despite offseason foot surgery.

“Being recognized for first team All-MAC is something I'm really proud of because it shows all of the hard work and dedication I've put into gymnastics,” Valentin said. “I never really focus on these awards as my ultimate goal, I just think about going into every meet and consistently executing my routines so I can help my team be successful. It's pretty awesome improving from second team honors last year to first team this year, because it really shows me that there's always room for improvement and plenty of opportunities to reach our goals.”

Conrad competed a majority of the season on all events. She finished the season scoring a career-high on all-around with a 39.350 against Central Michigan. Conrad notched career-highs on every event this season which included a 9.85 on vault, a 9.9 on bars, 9.875 on beam and 9.85 on floor.

“It has been a rewarding experience being a part of a team that is rewriting the record books. Our team is breaking boundaries and setting new expectations,” Conrad said. “We love this sport so we are going after every chance we can to succeed! I couldn't imagine gymnastics without my teammates, coaches and family by my side every step of the way constantly motivating me.”

The Eagles are set to compete at the 2016 MAC Championships tomorrow afternoon in Muncie, Ind. The meet is scheduled to start at 2 p.m.

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