BRIDGEPORT, Conn. – Chelsea Steinberg (Ridgewood, N.J.) secured victories on balance beam and all-around, and Ali Carr (Chelmsford, Mass.) triumphed on uneven parallel bars to carry the UNH gymnastics team to Friday night's 194.375-191.3 win against the University of Bridgeport at the Wheeler Recreation Center.
The Wildcats, who improved to 9-5 on the season, got the meet off to a strong start by totaling 48.675 on bars to sweep the top three places. Carr performed an excellent routine to score a 9.85, followed by a second-place 9.8 from Danielle Reibold (Horsham, Pa.) and a 9.775 from Katie Lawrence (Lyme, Conn.), who took third.
UNH slipped a bit on vault, counting one fall en route to a 48.15. Individually, Steinberg (9.825) finished second and Carr took third (9.8). Bridgeport's Monica Mesalles won the event with a 9.875.
With a commanding lead at the halfway point (96.825-94.15), the 'Cats turned their focus to individual scoring. On floor exercise, Steinberg again led the way with an impressive 9.85, good for third overall behind the Purple Knights' duo of Mesalles (9.9) and Jessie Watts (9.875). Katie Caliendo (Manorville, N.Y.) and Kate McGeever (Saco, Maine) turned in sterling performances to tie Bridgeport's Breanna Collins for fourth place at 9.825. For McGeever, it was a personal best. New Hampshire amassed a 48.875 on floor.
Steinberg collected a balance beam-winning score of 9.875 to power the Wildcats to a 48.675. Lawrence (9.775) finished fourth and Reibold (9.725) placed fifth.
Steinberg's all-around score of 39.3 was a season high.
"I'm happy with the win but disappointed that we are still not performing to the level we are capable of," head coach Gail Goodspeed said. "Chelsea was tremendous, nearly setting a personal best in the all-around, and we were also very pleased with the beam performance of Katie Law and Danie, and Kate McGeever did a great job on floor."
UNH returns to action with a meet at No. 20 Louisiana State University on Friday night, March 4, at 8 p.m. The Wildcats then conclude the home portion of their schedule with a matchup against Brown University and Central Michigan University at Lundholm Gymnasium on Monday, March 7, at 7 p.m. For tickets to that Senior Night meet, call (603) 862-4000, x 5, or visit www.unhwildcats.com.