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Gymnasts Put Fear Into UVM

MIT Finds Troubles On the Beam Again

By Eduardo Ovalle

Saturday, the women’s gymnastics team placed third, just two points behind the University of Vermont, whom the Engineers have never beaten. Yale University took first place ahead of the pack.

Ellefson returns with tsukahara

The meet began with MIT on vault and Vermont on bars. This meet saw the return of junior Sonja Ellefson’s layout tsukahara for a 9.275. Overall, the vaults were as solid as they have been all year as the team posted a 42.225 event total. Meanwhile, UVM swung a 41.55 on bars with somewhat of a depleted line-up. MIT them moved to bars as UVM sat on a bye and Yale started their meet on vault. First year student Carrie Garceau led the bars line-up and hit the best routine of the year so far for an 8.6. Other bar highlights included Karla Maguire’s ’01 solid routine with the new full twisting fly-away dismount for an 8.0, and Amy Shui’s ’02 8.6 that included a fall. Sonja sealed off a 42.15 bar total with a 9.4 routine. Yale meanwhile, was also competing with a shallow line-up on vault and posted a 44.90 event total.

Beam event troubles MIT again

The second half of the meet included MIT’s beam struggles. The team was hoping to have a better team beam day at home, but the only two gymnasts that managed to remain on the apparatus were Lindsey Wolf ’03 (8.1) and junior Liz Ellingson who led the way with a 9.1. The beam team total was a dismal 40.60 and I believe it probably marks the first time ever that MIT has scored higher on bars than on beam. Following, the team posted a well deserved 45.60 total on floor which included a great 9.15 routine from sophomore Cecile LeCocq, a 9.325 from Liz Ellingson and a solid 9.525 from Sonja Ellefson.

Controversy of officials’ scoring

The difference in the scoring, from one week to the next and from a different group of officials, is what makes this subjective sport difficult to understand sometimes. The college gymnastics teams all throughout the nation have complained for many years that scoring is not consistent from one region to the next. In this case, it is grossly inconsistent from just one neighboring state to another. The same Yale team that scored a 190+ at home last week, came to MIT and scored a 183.675. The third team in the meet was the University of Vermont who finished second with 172.525 points. The two point difference between MIT and UVM marks the closest that MIT has ever been to defeating the Catamounts.

For the second meet in a row, it was very solid and even stellar performances on three events, and a subpar effort on beam for the MIT women’s gymnastics team. This team has another shot at getting closer to Vermont when they travel to Vermont in two weeks. It would be quite a feat for an MIT team to defeat a Division I UVM team, but the team must look to their next meet first.