Warhawks write name in the record books

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Column by Kali Schmieding

Feb. 17, 2016

The UW-Whitewater gymnastics team continued its strong start this season with a win over rival UW-Oshkosh in a WIAC dual meet on Saturday, bringing the team to 3-0 in the conference.

The ’Hawks total score was 190.600, the sixth-highest score in program history. Oshkosh had a total score of 187.200. The team was led with strong scores of 47.950 on the vault and 47.700 on the balance beam.

“The meet this past Saturday really seemed like a great turning point for our team,” junior Katie Fiorilli said. “Not just performance-wise, but togetherness as teammates. This meet really gave us the confidence we needed to move forward and keep growing as a team.”

Freshman Lisa O’Donnell competed in the all-around for the first time in her career. She posted an incredible score of 38.550, the best score of the meet and the No. 2 score in program history.

“Lisa did great,” Fiorilli said. “Her performance on each event really helped towards our team score. I think she is a great asset to this team and I am excited to see her continue to grow.”

Junior Courtney Pickett also placed third in the all-around with a stunning score of 37.750.

On the uneven parallel bars, junior Mackenzie Smith led the ’Hawks with a score of 9.700. That was Smith’s third-straight mark of at least 9.7, tied for 14th in program history.

O’Donnell took second with a mark of 9.600. Fiorilli placed third, 9.450 points. Pickett took fourth with a score of 9.425. With a score of 8.725, senior Megan Love placed ninth.

On the vault, Fiorilli led the team with a mark of 9.275, tied for 12th in program history. Sophomore Lewa Evans took second with a score of 9.675, 25th in school history.  Freshman Destiny Patrick followed with a mark of 9.600. O’Donnell placed fifth with a mark of 9.525. Senior Hannah Lee took eighth with a total of 9.425.

The ’Hawks dominated the floor exercise clamming the top three spots. O’Donnell scored 9.750, tying the ninth-best score in   program history. Pickett scored a 9.725, which was a tie for 14th place in program history. Freshman Franchesca Hutton had a mark of 9.575. Lee and Fiorilli tied for sixth in the event with a score of 9.500.

“I feel as though I made some great improvements on my own routines,” Fiorilli said. “I was able to focus on areas where I have been previously struggling on. This meet was great practice for the upcoming bigger competitions.”

On the balance beam, Pickett and O’Donnell placed first and second. Pickett had a score of 9.700, tied for 14th in program history. O’Donnell had a score of 9.675, tied for 24th in program history.

Sophomore Kate Mierow competed on the balance beam for the first time this season. Mierow scored a 9.600 to tie for fourth place. Lee took eight place with a score of 9.500. Hutton had a mark of 9.225, good for 10th place.

The ’Hawks will try to continue their win streak at 7 p.m. on Friday at home against Division-I Centenary (Louisiana).

“So far this season has been going pretty well,” Fiorilli said. “Like I said before, I think this past meet in Oshkosh was a great turning point for our team. We have caught a glimpse of everyone’s greatness thus far in the season, but now we are putting it all together as a team. We are just on the brink of our greatness.”

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