February 3, 2008

Bulldogs Drop First Dual Meet

Feb. 3, 2008

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NEW HAVEN, Conn. - Yale dropped a close meet this afternoon to the University of Alaska Anchorage, 189.6 to 189.25. Still, the Bulldogs posted their highest team score yet this season and came away with individual titles on beam, floor, and the all-around.

The Bulldogs opened up with a nice set of vaults, with Katherine Yao making her debut in the line-up. Alina Liao stuck her vault, placing third with a 9.6. Allison Mak added a 9.575 for fifth place, and Lauren Tatsuno scored a 9.475. This was Yale's highest team score on vault since early March 2007.

Although bars is generally considered Yale's weakest event, there were no signs of struggle this afternoon. The Bulldogs had no falls, and earned another team high score this season. Cynthia Leung started out with a beautifully connected routine, scoring a 9.175, followed by Kristen Campbell, who caught her high bar release move and stuck her landing, earning a 9.4. Laura Lombardi also caught her difficult release, flying high above the bar and thrilling the audience, placing fourth with a 9.525. Brigitte Kivisto, who only competed bars today, added a 9.425 for sixth place. There was a point in Sherry Yang's routine where it appeared as if she would be forced to stop, but she managed to muster her strength and continue, sticking her landing for a 9.275. Liao closed with a 9.675 for second place.

Beam was another debut for Yao, who scored a 9.1, tying with Liao. Tatsuno and Campbell were solid, scoring a 9.6 and 9.4 respectively. Mak was flawless, wowing the judges and earning a 9.725, which propelled her to first place. Tatsuno placed second.

Going into the last rotation, Yale was behind by almost two points, but floor was another friendly event for the Bulldogs. Mak scored a 9.525 and sixth place. Campbell added a 9.675 for fourth, and Tatsuno's routine earned a 9.725 and second. Liao stuck all three of her tumbling passes, landing her in first place with a 9.8. While Yale wasn't able to snag the win, floor pulled them to within FOUR tenths of UAA.

Liao won the all-around with a 38.175, and Campbell had her best meet of the year thus far, placing second with a 37.8.

Next weekend, the Bulldogs will leave John J. Lee Amphitheater for the first time in almost a month, traveling to New Hampshire for the Fox Run Invitational. Competition starts at 7pm.

Report filed by Cathy Jan '09, Yale Sports Publicity