By Taylor Massey, QBSN Staff Writer
In its final home meet of the season, the Acrobatics and Tumbling team narrowly lost to Azusa Pacific by a mere .142 points. After taking the lead in the second to last event, the Bobcats were unable to surpass the Azusa Pacific Cougars in the team routine.
The Bobcats were looking for their first win of the season, and they almost had it. Although the Cougars held the lead for the first four events, Quinnipiac stayed within a few points waiting for its chance at a comeback.
It was clear early on that the Bobcats’ strength would come from their pyramid formations. In the pyramid heat of the compulsory event, they were given their first perfect score of the day. They lost some ground in the acro event but put the pressure back on once the pyramid event rolled around. The Bobcats topped the Cougars in each of the three pyramid heats. They scored a perfect 10 out of 10 in the first heat, a 9.9 in the second and a 9.65 in the third.
At the halftime break, Quinnipiac still trailed 96.59 to 97.53. It kept the momentum going in the second half of the meet. During the toss event, they closed the gap by once again winning the three heats. Sophomore Victoria Cribbs (Albany, N.Y.) finished strong in the third heat sticking a 9.7 out of a possible 9.8. With motivation building, the crowd roared for the Bobcats, cheering them to a lead.
They finally made it happen in the tumbling event when they scored higher than the Cougars in four out of the six heats. Danielle Burns (Budd Lake, N.J.) and Erin Trotman (Bristol, Conn.) dominated the duo heat earning a 9.8 of 9.9. Trotman outdid herself, nailing the open heat with a flawless performance. Going into the final team routine event, the Bobcats led 182.515 – 182.455.
Both teams put on tremendous routines with minimal mistakes to finish the meet. Anticipation spread through TD Bank as the judges took their time with the scoring. When the scores were announced the look of disappointment was instantaneous on the faces of the Bobcats. Azusa Pacific collected a 104.92 over Quinnipiac’s 104.72 to bring the final score to 287.375 – 287.215.
The Bobcats honored graduate student Trotman and senior Danielle Pilloise (Southington, Conn.) who competed in their last home meet of their Quinnipiac career.
Quinnipiac falls to 0-10 for the season and Azusa Pacific moves up to 3-3. Next up, the Bobcats travel to Baylor University for the NCATA National Championships. The championships span from Thursday, April 26 to Saturday, April 28.
By Angelique Fiske, QBSN Web-Editor
Lender Court at the TD Bank Sports Center, typically the home of the Quinnipiac men’s and women’s basketball teams, transformed into a world of acrobatics Saturday afternoon as the acrobats and tumbling team opened up its season against the Maryland University Terrapins. The Terps took the contest by a score of 284.540-274.855, sweeping all but one of the day’s events.
The Bobcats and Terps competed in five events – compulsories, acrobatics, pyramids, tosses, tumbling, and the team event. Maryland swept the first half events, taking the compulsory round 38.60-38.50, the acro round 27.59-24.40 and the pyramid round by a fractional margin of 28.00-27.90. Maryland also went on to take two events in the second half, the tumbling event by a score of 57.45-56.33 and the team routine, 105.050-98.830. The tossing event proved to show the best of the Bobcats as they won 27.90-27.85.
In spite of the loss, the Bobcats had shining moments, including an almost perfect score of 9.95-out-of-10 in the pyramid heat of the compulsory round. Flyers junior Christina Lasto (Oxford, Conn.), freshman Taylor Roberts (Kinnelon, N.J.), and sophomore Trisha Pierce (Middleown, Pa.) sealed the deal on the formation. Lasto, according to head coach Mary Ann Powers, worked tremendously to get such results.
“Christina, as a freshman, had that deer-in-the-headlights look all the time and she’s turned that around,” Powers said of Lasto’s performance. “She just fights for everything she has. She’s aggressive, fearless and wants more and more and more, and not just in a single round like tumbling. She wants to own all of them.”
The open heat of the toss event also brought the Bobcats to near perfection. Sophomore flyer Victoria Cribbs (Albany, N.Y.) managed to score 9.45-out-of-9.55.
In addition to the success of the flyers, graduate backspot Erin Trotman (Bristol, Conn.) scored 9.8-out-of-10 in the open tumbling heat. Previous to this year, Trotman had not mastered more intense tumbling moves due to an injury sustained before coming to Quinnipiac, according to Powers. However, that changed this season.
“She said to us this year ‘what scores a 10? I want my start value to be a 10.’ She’s been working at this since September,” Powers said. “She’s an amazing young woman.”
Maryland, the runner-up in last year’s National Collegiate Acrobatics and Tumbling Association National Championship and handed Quinnipiac the loss that booted it from the tournament, proved to be just as much of a threat this season. Terp flyers Brooke Grohol and Lauren Shannon both recorded outstanding days, including 9.2-out-of-9.7 in the synchronized toss heat.
While Powers acknowledge emotions may have been an issue, there was no question of Maryland’s talent.
“A lot of cases of nerves I think with some of our freshmen, but I think Maryland was just the better team,” Powers said.
As the team moves forward, Powers noted that “settling down” will be key.
“They can hit their team routine when it’s all of their acro or all of their pyramids and basket tosses, but when you add the tumbling into it, we start to have trouble,” Powers said.
The Bobcats next travel to Azusa Pacific in Azusa, Calif. on Friday, Feb. 17 at 7 p.m.