Busy weekend in Missouri ahead for Redbirds
ST. CHARLES, Mo. – After a double weekend of fixtures against Northern Illinois a week ago, Illinois State will be challenged again this weekend with a pair of fixtures in St. Charles, Missouri, against stiff competition. The Redbirds will compete in the annual GymQuarters Invitational Friday at Family Arena against Iowa State, Southeast Missouri and Lindenwood. They will then stay until Sunday to compete in a double meet at Lindenwood to wrap up the weekend.
“Our confidence should be high after the past few weekends as we look to continue our improvement in each of the two encounters this weekend,” the ISU head coach said. Bob Conkling noted. “Friday’s game is a quadruple game, and we’ll have to be at our best to come out on top with us competing against three strong teams. Sunday’s game is a duel against Lindenwood, and they’ve been strong so far this season. , so we will have to put in another solid effort to get the win.”
Last weekend, the Redbirds had some strong performances against Northern Illinois State. On Friday, the Redbirds took care of home business and picked up a win over the Huskies. Then on Sunday, the Redbirds went to DeKalb and posted a season-high score of 195.250 in a narrow loss to NIU.
For their efforts against NIU, Angelique Labat and Alana Laster were each honored with weekly awards from the Midwest Independent Conference. Labat was named MIC Gymnast of the Week for the second time in a row and third time this season, and Laster was named MIC Newcomer of the Week while earning Performance of the Week honor for her best jump of 9.925. in career.
Iowa State heads into the competition ranked 37th in the latest Road To Nationals standings. The Cyclones fell to the No. 12 Denver Pioneers by a score of 195.775-196.850 last Sunday to take their record to 1-4 this spring. The Cyclones had their best performance of the season on vault and tied their best performance on balance beam. Eight gymnasts achieved scores of 9.800 or higher to propel the team to their second best overall score of the season.
Lindenwood heads into the encounter one spot ahead of the Redbirds at No. 51 in the Road To Nationals standings. The Lions beat SEMO in a game last Friday in Cape Girardeau with a team score of 195.150. Gayla Griswold took first place overall in the vault for the third competition in a row, with a personal best 9.900.
In the encounter against Lindenwood, the RedHawks won five individual event titles en route to a team score of 194.100 in their home opener at Houck Field House. Lindsay Ockler won the bars, while Anna Kaziska won the beam title. Kaziska also finished first overall on floor with former club teammate Madison Greene. Molly Maxwell took the all around crown with a 38.200 and Lydia Webb was second with a 37.900.
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