NEW HAVEN, Conn. - After three Bulldogs competed at NCAA Regionals last weekend, the 2018 ECAC Championship team prepares to take on the biggest competition of their season Friday, as they travel to Texas Woman's University to compete at the USA Collegiate National Championships. This will conclude their 2018 season. Competitors include the host school, Air Force, Bridgeport, Brown, Cornell, Lindenwood, Penn and Yale. After breaking over 39 records this season, the team enters this competition with immense confidence, without a doubt in contention for the team title. The meet, which runs from Fri., Apr. 13, through Sun., Apr. 15, will be held at Kitty Magee Arena.
"I am extremely confident that this team will continue its trend of delivering record-breaking performances. I would love for our team to qualify to team finals as well as hit 24 for 24 routines in both competitions," said sophomore Jade Buford.
Air Force gymnastics resulted in a third-place finish at MPSF Championships (194.975). The Purple Knights from Bridgeport won the ECAC-2 Championship for the tenth consecutive time. Brown gymnastics is coming off of a third-place finish with a 194.025 at the ECAC Championships, while Penn placed fourth and Cornell followed with a 193.150. The Yale Bulldogs came out victorious winning their second ECAC title.
The Regional Qualifying Score (RQS) rankings heading into the competition this weekend include:
1. Lindenwood (195.175)
2. TWU (194.730)
3. Yale (194.665)
5. Air Force (194.315)
6. Cornell (193.285)
7. Brown (193.115)
8. Pennsylvania (193.085)
Overall, in the NCAA rankings, Air Force is ranked (57th), Bridgeport (55th), Brown (60th), Cornell (59th), Penn (61st), Lindenwood (43rd), TWU (52nd) and Yale (53rd). Not only has Yale never been ranked this high in the NCAA, Yale's team score at ECAC Championships marks the highest team score in program history, increasing Yale's regional qualifying score to above a 194 for the first time in history.
"As a senior, I am so excited for this last Nationals weekend with YGT. This season has been beyond amazing. I am trying to relish in these next few days and really savor every moment with the team. No matter what happens, I am so proud and lucky to be apart of this historic group of women," said Megan Ryan.
In 2017, the Bulldogs posted a team score of 192.975, resulting in a fourth-place team finish at semi-finals. The Bulldogs were edged out by Seattle Pacific (193.775) and Lindenwold took first-place (195.100). Many Bulldogs made first-team All-American including junior Kiarra Alleyne (Floor), Anella Anderson (Floor), Buford (Floor), sophomore Rebecca Chong (Vault), sophomore Anna Jennings (Vault) and Ryan (Bars).
There are three potential opportunities to compete this weekend. The three days of competition at the USAG Collegiate Nationals will be broken down into two qualifying sessions, team finals (Apr. 14 at 7:00 p.m.) and event finals (Apr. 15 at 1:00 p.m.) – all times Central.
The first team semi-final includes Air Force, Bridgeport, Lindenwood and Penn at 2:00 p.m. The second team semi-final includes Brown, Cornell, TWU and Yale at 7:00 p.m. The top two teams from each qualifying session will advance to Saturday's team finals, while the top five finishers in each event, including ties, from each qualifying session will advance to the event finals on Sunday.
"It was so exciting to make first-team All-American for floor last year, because it allowed me to end an already successful season on a high note. I would love the chance to have the same success this year as well as the chance to make more history with the team," said junior Kiarra Alleyne.
Yale's rotation schedule for the competition will be:
Rotation 1 – Floor
Rotation 2 – Vault
Rotation 3— Bars
Rotation 4 – Beam
Full weekend passes are $30 for adults and $20 for youth (6-17) and seniors (55+), while single-day passes are $15 for adults and $10 for youth and seniors.
Both semi-finals as well as team and individual finals have live stats. Live video can be found here.
LIVE STAT LINKS
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report by Anna Jennings '20, Yale Sports Publicity