LEXINGTON, Ky. - The University of New Hampshire gymnastics team posted season-highs on vault and floor exercise but fell to the 20th-ranked University of Kentucky Friday night by a 194.775-191.450 margin in front of 1,492 at Memorial Coliseum. The defeat marked UNH's first of the season after opening the season with wins over Rutgers and Rhode Island.
"We did a great job on vault and floor," said head coach Gail Goodspeed. "Bars and beam tonight were certainly below our capabilities. It was good for the kids tonight to see a big-time SEC program up close and see that there's no reason we can't be right there with them."
Junior Jen Dickson (Salisbury, Md.) continues to pace the 'Cats in the all-around competition, placing second with a 38.575. UK's Aronda Primault captured the all-around with a 39.225. Junior Michelle Harley (Collegeville, Pa.) and senior Bethany Wagner (Bound Brook, N.J.) placed third and fourth with scores of 38.450 and 37.525, respectively.
The 'Cats opened up on uneven bars where they posted a 47.250 score. Dickson tied for third with a 9.750, while Harley scored a 9.725. On vault, UNH was led by Harley and Wagner who posted identical 9.725 scores.
New Hampshire continued its strong performance on floor exercise, with all six gymnasts recording a score of at least 9.7 and defeating the host GymKats 48.900-48.000. Wagner matched a career-high with a 9.85, placing her third, while Dickson and senior co-captain Katie Revis (Putnam Valley, N.Y.) each came in with scores of 9.80. The bad news for UNH was that freshman Lindsay Berrios (Long Pond, Pa.) suffered a knee injury on an exhibition routine and is expected to miss the remainder of the 2002 season.
"Losing Lindsay is certainly a big blow for us," said Goodspeed.
Wrapping up on the balance beam, UNH registered a score of 46.925. Revis tied for third in the event with a season-high 9.725.
The Wildcats traveled to Kentucky without associate head coach Ed Datti, whose father passed away this week. "The team did a wonderful job dealing with the adversity of not having Ed around. This is a young team and they did well dealing with a lot of stress tonight," said Goodspeed.
Next weekend the 'Cats host the annual UNH Fox Run Invitational at the Whittemore Center. The meet, which will see the Wildcats take on Cornell and Temple, is scheduled for a 7 p.m. start.