COLLEGE PARK, Md. - Strong vault and uneven bar performances to finish the tri-meet off on a high note highlighted the trip to Maryland for the gymnastics team on Sunday. After scoring in the 47-point range on both beam and floor to start the day, the Quakers posted 48-plus scores on the vault and uneven bars to finish it. Overall, Penn finished with a team score of 191.650, finishing third in the meet that featured Maryland (ranked 33rd amongst Division I teams) and Bridgeport (ranked second amongst Division II teams).
Penn scored a 48.1 on the vault, which was the squad's fourth time this season that is has gone over the 48-point threshold. Capping the day off on bars, Penn scored a season-best 48.725. This beat the team's previous high of 48.7 that was set at the Ivy Classic. It also marked the seventh time in the last eight meets that Penn has scored 48 or higher in the uneven bars competition.
Starting the day off on the balance beam, Dana Bonincontri led Penn with a 9.65. This mark was good enough for sixth place overall at the end of the meet. Katie Graham would give Penn two finishers in the top-10, scoring 9.6 in her eighth place finish. Just missing the top-10, Makeda Constable finished third among Penn gymnasts with a score of 9.525.
Amber Woo finished the meet in 12th place overall on beam, scoring 9.425. Kirsten Strausbaugh scored a 9.375, giving Penn its fifth score on the event, and finishing in 13th overall. Penn's sixth score came from Megan Milavec. She rounded out the beam rotation with a 9.05. As a team, Penn scored 47.6 on beam.
Heading over to the floor exercise, it was Strausbaugh that led all Penn gymnasts in the event, scoring 9.8, and finishing in third place overall. This score also marked the third time in her last four floor routines that Strausbaugh has scored at least a 9.8. Just missing the top-10 in this event was Bonincontri. She scored a 9.65 to finish in 11th.
Milavec added a 9.6 for Penn's third score in the event, which placed her 14th overall. Woo scored a 9.1, while Constable scored an even nine to round out Penn's top five scores for the event. Kaitlyn Reszkowski led off the floor team and finished with the team's sixth score in the event.
Competing on vault for the third rotation, the Quakers would put three gymnasts in the top-10 for this event. Leading the way was freshman vault specialist Wynne Levy. She scored a team-best 9.75 to finish in sixth place overall at the meet. Her score also bested her previous season high by a full tenth. Strausbaugh added another 9.7 to the Penn vault with her eighth place finish in the event. This mark was the second best of her season.
Bonincontri finished her vault with a score of 9.625. This mark placed her 10th overall at the end of the meet. Normally a floor specialist, Reszkowski scored a 9.575 in her first collegiate vault. This was good enough for 12th place overall and Penn's fourth score. Finishing right behind her in 13th place was Woo. She finished with a 9.525 on vault. Milavec rounded out the strong vault performance, giving Penn six vault scores of 9.5 or higher. She placed 14th overall.
The Quakers would then close the meet with their best routines of the day on bars. Penn had three finishers in the top-nine of this event, while four of the scores were 9.7 or higher. Leading the way was Bonincontri, who scored a 9.825 to finish as the event runner-up. She has now scored 9.8 or higher in three of her last five meets, just missing the mark in a fourth. Strausbaugh just missed the 9.8 mark and finished with a 9.775, good for seventh at the meet. This was the sixth time this year she has scored at least that high on bars.
Milavec set a career high in her ninth place finish on bars. She scored 9.75, which beat her score from the Ivy Classic by five-hundredths of a point. Competing in just one event on the day, Laura DiPaolo scored a season-high 9.7 to finish her only event in 12th place overall. Woo finished just behind her in 13th, scoring 9.675, which tied her season high that she set two weekends ago at the Ivy Classic. Constable would give Penn six solid scores with a 9.525 to finish the day in 16th place overall.
In the all-around, Bonincontri finished the meet with a combined score of 38.75. This gave her a second runner-up finish on the day. Like the team, Strausbaugh closed the day strong and scored a combined 38.65 in her four events to take third overall in the all-around. On the heels of her career day on bars, Milavec scored 37.9 and finished fourth in the all-around. Woo would also compete in all four events, scoring 37.75, and finishing in fifth place at meet's end.
The Quakers will now have a short week in the gym before they get back into completion this Friday, March 16 when the team travels to Towson. That meet will take place at 7 p.m. Yale and George Washington will also participate in the quad meet. This will serve as the final tune-up before the ECAC Championships inside The Palestra in two weekends from now on Saturday, March 24.
Full Penn Results
1. Maryland - 195.075
2. Bridgeport - 192.950
3. Penn - 191.650
6. Wynne Levy - 9.750 (Season high)
8. Kirsten Strausbaugh - 9.700
10. Dana Bonincontri - 9.625
12. Kaitlyn Reszkowski - 9.575 (First time on vault this season)
13. Amber Woo - 9.525
14. Megan Milavec - 9.500
Uneven Bars (48.725) (Season high, third best score in program history)
2. Dana Bonincontri - 9.825
7. Kirsten Strausbaugh - 9.775
9. Megan Milavec - 9.750 (Career high)
12. Laura DiPaolo - 9.700 (Season high)
13. Amber Woo - 9.675 (Ties season high)
16. Makeda Constable - 9.525