DURHAM, N.H. – University of New Hampshire gymnastics head coach Gail Goodspeed announced Monday that former Wildcat co-captain Ali Carr (Chelmsford, Mass.) has been hired as the team's new assistant coach, effective immediately.
Carr, who was a Wildcat senior co-captain and team MVP in 2012, replaces Jess Kelley, who stepped down after two seasons on the staff. After graduating from UNH with a degree in Kinesiology: Sport Studies last year, Carr spent a year coaching at Broderick Gymnastics in Hyde Park, Mass., under the tutelage of 1994 UNH alum Karen (Olsson) Broderick, who helped guide the 'Cats to the 1994 NCAA Championship meet.
"We are thrilled to mentor a UNH gymnastics alum," Goodspeed said. "Ali has the personality, training and energy to be an outstanding collegiate women's gymnastics coach. The transition to our coaching staff should be seamless, as Ali knows the program, the student-athletes and the coaches. Her experience as a club gymnastics coach will enhance her work in both our training and in the recruiting process."
Carr, a four-year member of the UNH gymnastics team, was feted as team MVP following a 2012 season in which she earned a place on the All-East Atlantic Gymnastics League (EAGL) Second Team on vault and balance beam and garnered EAGL All-Tournament Second Team honors on vault and uneven bars. The Chelmsford, Mass., native sported the Wildcats' top vault mark in 11 of 13 meets, highlighted by first-place scores in four straight meets from Jan. 1-Feb. 10. She compiled a 9.830 Regional Qualifying Score (RQS) to rank eighth in the Northeast Region and tie for 10th in EAGL competition. Her previous All-EAGL awards include First Team on bars ('09) and vault ('11) and Second Team on bars ('11). She secured a place on the EAGL All-Tournament Second Team on bars in both '09 and '11.
As a sophomore in 2010, Carr scored a career-high 9.950 on bars in a home victory against Brown (Feb. 12) to equal UNH's all-time high mark on that apparatus with Olsson and Mariana Peña Trestini (Austyn Fobes tied the score in 2011). Carr's other career highs are 9.875 on vault and a 9.900 on beam.
Carr becomes the first UNH alumnae to join the Wildcats' coaching staff since Jana (Reardon) Mowers (1998-99).
The UNH gymnastics team finished the 2013 season ranked 41st nationally with a 194.810 RQS, an overall record of 17-7 and a season-high mark of 195.650 scored in a tri-meet victory over Temple and Brown at Lundholm Gymnasium on Jan. 26. For more information on the UNH gymnastics program, visit www.unhwildcats.com or follow @UNHWildcats on Twitter.