Iowa State Athletics
RALEIGH, N.C.—The 17th-ranked Iowa State gymnastics team was far from its best Friday night in the Reynolds Coliseum, but the Cyclones did enough to defeat No. 18 North Carolina State and George Washington. Iowa State scored 193.250, while North Carolina State posted 193.175 and George Washington tallied 190.300.
With the two wins, Iowa State improved to 6-1-1/1-1 Big 12 on the season. The Cyclones’ victory over 18th-ranked North Carolina State marked the third time this season Iowa State has downed a team in the Top 25 national rankings.
Iowa State was without vault and bars regular Alex Grant, who missed the competition due to illness.
“Alex’s absence hurt us the most on vault and as a result our depth was too shallow” Iowa State head coach Jay Ronayne said. “Without her, it made vault really difficult.”
The night belonged to Iowa State senior gymnast Jacquelyn Holmes who was returning to her home state at the meet. The Charlotte, N.C., native posted an event-winning 9.800 on bars and delivered a career-best 9.775 on beam.
“With about 15-18 relatives making sure they were here, Jackie really looked solid tonight,” Ronayne said. “I was very proud of her. I specifically scheduled this meet years ago knowing she would be a senior this year, and she did great tonight.”
Iowa State freshman Michelle Shealy won the all-around with a score of 38.875. North Carolina State’s Diahanna Ham won vault (9.725), George Washington’s Leslie Delima was the beam victor (9.900) and the Wolfpack’s Jessica Panza earned the floor title (9.850).
For the first time this season, Iowa State was forced to count a fall on beam. As a result, the Cyclones scored a season-low 48.150 on the apparatus.
“We did not make it easy on the judges tonight,” Ronayne said. “We made them work hard. They used up a lot of ink in their pens. Our vaults still need to sharpen up and that is the only way we can remain competitive. That will be our focus the next few weeks.”