TOWSON, Md. – One of five seniors competing in her final home meet, senior Kacy Catanzaro finished first in the all-around competition with a 39.225 score to lead Towson University to a seasonal high 194.80 score and wins over George Washington (192.55), Pennsylvania (191.55) and Yale (189.325) in the Towson Center on Friday night.
The Tigers’ 194.800 was their top score of the season and their highest team score since March 18, 2008 when they posted a 194.850 score at George Washington University.
Catanzaro, who won her fifth all-around title of the season, had a career high 9.875 on floor exercise to finish first. She also won the balance beam competition, matching her career high with a 9.875 score. On vault, she finished eighth with a 9.725 score. Her 9.75 on bars placed her fifth.
The Tigers, who are now 19-5 on the season, broke open a close meet in the final rotation. The Tigers went into the final rotation with a lead of 0.525 points over Penn and a 1.275-point lead over George Washington.
But, the Tigers were outstanding on floor exercise, earning a seasonal high score of 49.225 to win the meet by a comfortable margin.
Senior Alyssa Dittman led off on floor and earned a 9.725 score. Then, senior Kady Sullivan, who had been sidelined all season due to a broken wrist, competed for the first time all season. She responded with a career best 9.825 score. Another senior, Lindsay Poplaski, was third and she earned a career high 9.825 score. After Catanzaro had a career high 9.875, senior Avis Hixon matched her career high with a 9.85 score. Junior Britney Russell closed out the meet for the Tigers with a 9.85 score that equaled her career high.
Although the Tigers excelled on floor to win the meet, Coach Vicki Chliszczyk felt that the Tigers’ performance on balance beam was the decisive factor in the victories.
“For the first time all season, we attacked the balance beam with confidence,” she said. “We weren’t tentative. We just got up there and did our routines. After that, we just put it all out there on floor and we came up with a big score. It was the perfect way for our seniors to close out their careers at home.”
The Tigers’ five seniors finished their careers undefeated in the Towson Center. After winning the meet on Friday night, the Tigers have won their last 31 decisions at home. The Tigers’ last home loss was March 21, 2008.
On beam, the Tigers were led by Catanzaro and Russell, who finished one-two in the meet. While Catanzaro finished first with a career high-matching 9.875 score, Russell took second place with a career high 9.85 score. Freshman Janis Konkle tied for fourth place with a career high 9.725 score.
Freshman Elena Corcoran of George Washington won the vault competition with a 9.825 score. There was a five-way tie for second place as Stephanie Stoicovy and Courtney Willoughby of GW matched the 9.775 scores recorded by Russell and Hixon. Mia Yabut of Yale also tied for second place.
Junior Dana Bonincontri of Pennsylvania took first place on bars (9.875) while sophomore Allison Antenucci of Towson tied for second place with Kirsten Strausbaugh of Penn (9.85).
On beam, Catanzaro won the competition while Russell tied for second place with Monique Blount of George Washington.
On the floor exercise, Catanzaro was part of a three-way tie for first place with a 9.875 score. Junior Nefertiti Roy of GW and Stoicovy were also part of the tie.
Catanzaro took first place in the all-around with a 39.225 score, the second highest score of her career. Strausbaugh was second with a 38.835 score while Tara Feld of Yale finished third. Poplaski finished fourth with a 38.375 all-around score.
After the meet, Catanzaro, Dittman, Hixon, Poplaski and Sullivan were honored in Senior Night ceremonies.
The Tigers close out the regular season on Sunday with a dual meet at George Washington.
COLLEGE GYMNASTICS: 1. Towson 194.800; 2. George Washington 192.550; 3. Pennsylvania 191.550; 4. Yale 189.325.
BARS: 1. Dana Bonincontri (PENN), 9.875; 2. Allison Antenucci (TOW), 9.85; Kirsten Strausbaugh (PENN), 9.80.
FLOOR EXERCISE: 1. Kacy Catanzaro (TOW), 9.875 – career high; Nefertiti Roy (GW), 9.875; Stephanie Stoicovy (GW), 9.875.