Gymnasts continue to Shatter RecordsBy Catherine Rocchio
The women's gymnastics team finished its last round of dual meets this past weekend, competing at Rhode Island College on Feb. 14, then hosting Brown University and Southern Connecticut State on Sunday afternoon in DuPont Gymnasium. Lisa Arel '92 led the way again, breaking her own MIT record for overall score at the meet against Brown and SCS.
The MIT women defeated the Rhode Island College team with a team total score of 159.25 to RIC's 143.55. Southern Connecticut took the tri-meet title with a score of 174.8 over Brown's 172.0 and MIT's 157.45.
Vaulting was again consistent for the Engineers, with Gretchen Martin '92 and Karen Oda '93 scoring 7.2 and 7.45 for their handspring vaults, while Leabourne and Lyren both executed solid twisting vaults and added scores of 7.9 and 8.45. Arel had her best vault of the season, earning an 8.7 for her handspring full-twist and taking first place on the event.
In floor exercise, freshman Stephanie DeWeese's graceful endeavor scored 6.85 and Martin's first floor exercise of the season included a high-flying back somersault in the first tumbling run and added a consistent 7.35 score. Oda had one of her best routines, adding another back-somersault to the last tumbling run and scoring 7.55 for her efforts. Leabourne performed a half-twisting somersault in her second tumbling run scoring 8.5 while Lyren and Arel topped off the evening with high scores of 9.15 and 9.3 for their dynamic tumbling and dance.
MIT women placed 1-2-3 overall -- Arel won the meet with a score of 35.15, while Lyren took second with 34.70, and Leabourne third at 32.95.
The MIT seniors competed at home for the last time on Sunday against Brown and SCS. The Engineers got off to a slow start on the balance beam, but Leabourne and Lyren each worked through nervousness and received scores of 8.35 and 8.4. Arel excelled once again with an unwavering routine that earned 9.1. She took second place overall in the event.
MIT excelled in the floor exercise. Seniors Sandra Tan and Martin performed for the last time at home, earning 6.85 and 7.0 for beautiful and graceful routines. Oda had her season high score of 7.8 while Leabourne again tumbled strongly for an 8.4. Lyren demonstrated both power and agility, earning a 9.15, while Arel ended the afternoon in style with a 9.4, tying the MIT floor exercise record.
Arel broke the MIT all-around record for the second time this season, totaling 35.65 and placing second overall in the meet. Lyren and Leabourne also had high all-around totals of 34.35 and 33.05.
The MIT team has qualified for the Eastern College Athletic Conference Championships to be held this weekend at Ursinus College in Pennsylvania.