Gymnasts Fall Short On Senior Night

By Jeff Rapp, February 25th, 2017

The No. 20 Ohio State women’s gymnastics team fell to No. 10 Denver, 196.900-195.225, on Senior Night Friday at St. John Arena. Friday marked the final meet in St. John Arena for seniors Michelle Burns, Tenille Funches, Erin Malone and Jaine VanPutten.

“We struggled a little bit on beam today but we’ll learn from it,” Carey Fagan, Ohio State head coach, said. “It was the first time we had to count a fall this year but I was happy to see the way we responded on floor exercise. We wanted to finish strong and I was happy we were able to do that to close it out with a good performance for our seniors.”

Ohio State opened the meet posting its third-best team score on vault of the season, earning a 49.100, to tie the Pioneers on the event. Stefanie Merkle tallied her best mark of the season on vault, tying her career-best 9.850 to place second, while VanPutten and Alexis Mattern each tacked on a 9.825 to tie for third.

The Buckeyes moved to uneven bars in the second rotation, tallying a 49.150 for their second-best score of the season on the event. Kaitlyn Hofland paced Ohio State with a 9.875 to tie for second.

Halfway through the meet, the Buckeyes trailed the Pioneers, 98.375-98.250.

In the third rotation, Ohio State picked up a 47.850 on balance beam. Taylor Harrison led the Buckeyes with a 9.850 while Jamie Stone notched a 9.800.

The Buckeyes concluded the meet with a 49.125 on floor exercise. Mattern tied for the event title with a 9.900.

Mattern placed third in the all-around with a 38.125.

The Buckeyes next travel to Denver on March 4.

NOTES

– Merkle set season high and tied career-high 9.850 on vault

– Funches picked up a season-high 9.850 on uneven bars

– The tie for the floor exercise title marked the fourth time this season Mattern either won or tied for the title on the event