Everyone knows that a good matchup between rivals should be close. Someone should have reminded the Aggies. Again.
After handling Seattle Pacific with ease on Feb. 6, the Aggies had no trouble defeating the Falcons once again, posting a season-high score en route to a convincing 192.350-186.975 win at the Pavilion on Friday night.
“Our performance today was very, very good,” said coach John Lavallee. “By far our best so far. When you have a good team performance, everyone has to have a good day. We had everybody on today, and it took everybody.“
Arguably the most impressive performer of the night was junior Kendal McCann. McCann tied for the win on bars with junior Lida Gehlan (9.700) and won the all-around competition – the fourth of her career – with a career-high score of 38.300.
“I definitely did not expect this at the start of this season,” McCann said. “Looking back to freshman year when I competed in only one event, I would have never imagined being a consistent all-arounder in a million years. When John first told me I was [doing all-around], I literally thought he was joking.“
Sophomore Stacey Nicolini also put forth quite the performance, winning the beam and taking second to Tanya Ho (9.750) in the vault. She scored season-high 9.725‘s on both events. These were huge improvements over her previous season-highs of 9.650 (beam) and 9.575 (vault).
“I think what made the difference was being confident and really thinking about my landings,” Nicolini said. “Also, being at home and having the fans‘ support and also the team support. It felt really good to be at home again, having all the parents there and friends.“
As a whole, the Aggies scored over 48 points on three events, the first time they’ve done so all season. The highest score came on floor – always the Aggies‘ final event at home – with a total of 48.425. Senior co-captain Andi Dolinsky took the win with a score of 9.750 and was followed by freshman Erika Van Dyke at 9.725 to tie for second.
The vault saw a total score of 48.300, which tied a season-high for the Aggies. Ho led a five-deep sweep in that event, followed by Nicolini, senior co-captain Adee Schoffman (9.650), sophomore Marcy Miller (9.625) and sophomore Ashley Lachman (9.550).
“We really pulled together as a team and fixed many of our mistakes that we had in previous meets,” Nicolini said. “We were all supporting each other and we had a really good performance.“
This was the first of three consecutive home meets for the Aggies, who will next be hosting a tough quadrangular with Stanford, San Jose State and fellow Mountain Pacific Sports Federation member Alaska-Anchorage on Friday at the Pavilion.
“We are finally stepping it up and going big,” McCann said. “Aggie fans should just know that we really appreciate the support each week, and that they should expect some pretty amazing things from this team from here on out.“
ALEX WOLF-ROOT can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.