By David F. Pendrys
BRIDGEPORT, CT – The Bridgeport Purple Knights and Southern Connecticut State University Owls opened their season on UB’s campus as the two familiar opponents begun their season in Connecticut, which is a rare occurrence. Each team was adjusting to the departure of key seniors, though Bridgeport graduated a massive senior class the year before in comparison to Southern. Thus each lineup featured veterans and newcomers.
On Vault, UB’s Nina Whittaker took first with a 9.75 as her teammate Kelsey Campbell and Brieanna Zine as well as SCSU’s Alexandra Lesperance each had 9.675s. Maya Reimers had a 9.6 for UB, Alexandra Avendano had a 9.575 for SCSU, and Maritza Futch of UB and Melena Ristenbatt of Southern put up 9.525s.
On the Bars, Campbell outpaced the entire field with her 9.85, second was teammate Thomara Powell-Brown’s 9.775 and third was Kelly Aycock’s 9.7. Futch and Kelli Tereshko each had 9.675 to round out the counted scores for the Purple Knights. Gracie Hundley of SCSU was first among owls with her 9.575.
On Beam, which gave both teams some problems, Reimers took first with her 9.7, as first year teammate Lauren Ramirez scored a 9.675 from the anchor spot. Campbell put up a 9.575. Michaela Gilbert led Southern with her 9.425.
On Floor, Alexandra Avendano unveiled a new floor routine with new music and flipped to a 9.75 first place finish. UB’s Whittaker had a 9.725, and Reimers had a 9.7. Campbell and Aycock each had 9.675s, and teammate Gabrielle Kistner scored a 9.625. Keylea Brothers and Lesperance each had 9.575 for Southern.
Campbell was the lone All Arounder and scored a 38.775 in total.
Southern would end the day with a 186.150 but with several of their stalwarts scoring below average there is a lot of room to grow. UB tallied a 192.650 in a transitional year.
Routine videos from the meet can be found here:
Just Bridgeport routines are here:
Just Southern Connecticut routines are here:
Bridgeport Head Coach Byron Knox spoke after the meet about the team’s composition and what he will be doing to build them up towards USAG Collegiate Championships at the end of the year. (Apologies for the audio quality.)
Campbell, Reimers, and Ramirez all spoke afterwards about their experiences at UB and how the meet went. (Apologies for the audio quality.)
Southern heads down to Rutgers for a quad meet next weekend. Bridgeport heads up to New Hampshire to take on the Wildcats.