Gymnastics places third at West Virginia meet

Morgantown, West Vir.-- The University of New Hampshire (193.925) defeated Cornell University (189.725) and Yale University (191.500) for a third place finish Sunday afternoon at the five team meet hosted by West Virginia University held at the West Virginia Coliseum in front of 778 fans. No.8 University of Florida (197.125) and West Virginia University (195.075) edged the Wildcats. Freshman Amanda Hall (Bremerton, Wash.) and junior Tara Phillips (Spring, Texas) tied for first on vault.

"One of the highlights of this afternoon's meet is we proved we can hang with Florida and West Virginia," said Head Coach Gail Goodspeed. "We know that we are as good as those top teams. We got a little nervous and ahead of ourselves at times this afternoon, however, we will come back and work out the kinks in the gym before EAGLs."

New Hampshire began the meet with a power surge on vault as Hall and Phillips scored personal bests 9.950 to lead the Wildcats.

UNH continued the momentum into the next rotation. On bars, senior assistant captain Jen Dickson (Salisbury, Md.) and senior captain Michelle Harley (Collegeville, Pa.) were the 'Cats top finishers with a 9.825 and 9.80 respectively. Phillips finished just shy of the top ten with a 9.750 for eleventh place.

New Hampshire followed Florida and after two rotations, the Wildcats were less than four tenths of a point behind the Gators, 98.025 to 98.450. However, the momentum of the first two rotations caught up with the Wildcats on beam as they walked away with 47.275 team score. Dickson tied for fifth overall on beam with a 9.800 and was the 'Cats highest scorer.

New Hampshire tried to regroup after the performance on beam, posting a solid 48.625 team score on floor.

"We had too much power. We were taking one or two steps on every landing" said Goodspeed. "We were trying to make up for the falls on beam. "

Junior Brie McNamera (Haymarket, Vir.) had the highest score for UNH on floor with a 9.775 for fourteenth place.

Dickson placed fifth in the all-around with a 39.150.

The Wildcats travel to the University of Rhode Island on March 22nd, for the last meet before returning home to host the EAGL Championships at the Whittemore Center on March 29th.

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