Cougar gymnasts take 3rd in quad meet on the road

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BYU’s women’s gymnastics team put up its highest team score of the season (194.900), but it was not enough to overcome Iowa (195.875) and Texas Woman’s (195.125) as the Cougars took third in a quad meet on Saturday.

BYU’s score was good enough to top Southwest Missouri State, which finished last with a score of 188.925.

In Texas for the first of three away meets, the Cougars performed well, displaying the consistency the women have been capable of all year. Over the last three meets, BYU has done a better job executing routines.

Before the meet, freshman Marguerite Lindstrom said the team worked hard on the little details in practice the past week. This extra effort was apparent on bars.

On bars, the Cougars scored a 49.100, a season high in the event. Five of the six women competing for BYU scored a 9.725 or higher. Leading the way was senior captain Natalie Eyre-Pickard, who scored a 9.875. Right behind her was fellow senior Jennifer Lezeu with a 9.850 and sophomore KayCee Gassaway, who scored a 9.825.

On beam, the only event in which seniors Krysten Koval, Pickard and Lezeu all compete, the team’s highest scorer was once again Pickard, who earned a 9.825. Koval and Lezeu both scored a 9.800.

Floor was BYU’s second best event of the night with a team score of 48.800. Four of the six gymnasts competing for BYU scored a 9.750 or above. Senior Mickell Merrell scored a 9.800, as did Lezeu.

Earlier in the week, Merrell said she thought it would be a tough meet, because the team would compete again on Monday, but said the team was working on “controlling the controllable.” The Cougars experienced big injuries this year, losing sophomore standout Megan Bain early on, but have persevered.

BYU’s seniors were integral in the team’s strong finish and highest overall team score of the season. Pickard and Lezeu both scored a 9.800 or above in all three of their events. Koval scored a 9.725 or above in her three events and Merrell performed well in her events of vault and floor.

Lindstrom said one of the most important things she learned this season from her senior teammates is how exactly college meets work.

“It’s a new experience for me,” Lindstrom said. “It’s been good to see how they [the seniors] take meets and keep their composure.”

BYU competes against Utah State in Logan tonight at 7 p.m and will stay on the road until the team’s last home meet against Southern Utah on March 19.

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