Senior Allison Buckley tied the beam school record with a 9.950 and broke the all-around record with a 39.550.
March 12, 2011
DEKALB, Ill. - Senior Allison Buckley and the No. 16 Illinois women's gymnastics team rewrote the UI record book on Saturday at the State of Illinois Classic, as four different school records were either set or tied. The Illini won the quad meet between the four Division I Illinois schools for the fourth straight-year with a school-record score of 196.975, topping Northern Illinois (194.025), Illinois-Chicago (193.325) and Illinois State (192.650). Buckley eclipsed her own all-around record by winning the title with a 39.550 and tied the top beam mark in program history with a 9.950, helping the Orange and Blue reset the beam record for the second time this season with a 49.375.
"It was a really fun night," interim head coach Kim Landrus said. "We tried to fine tune everything we had been working on and really stuck our landings today. We had a really great start on floor and carried that momentum throughout the rest of the meet. Our beam team was phenomenal today, and Allison had her game face. She performed four very solid routines and had a nearly flawless performance on beam."
The Illini swept all four event titles and the top three spots in the all-around while also posting scores over 49 on every event. Junior Kelsey Joannides matched her career high with a 9.925 to win the vault title while senior Melissa Fernandez and sophomore Alina Weinstein tied for the top spot on bars with a score of 9.875. Buckley, who now owns 62 career event titles, equaled her own school record to win the beam crown with a 9.950 and tied a career best with a 9.925 on floor to earn the victory. Fernandez was the runner-up in the all-around with a 39.300 followed by Weinstein in third with a personal-best total of 39.250.
In the first rotation of the afternoon, Illinois started on floor and recorded a score of 49.200. Buckley's 9.925 led the way followed by Weinstein in second with a career-high tying 9.875. Senior Samantha Perino and freshman Amber See tied for third at 9.825 while Fernandez wrapped up the scoring with a 9.750.
The Orange and Blue the moved to vault where they tallied a season-high 49.175, which tied the third-best mark in school history. Joannides' 9.925 paced the effort while Buckley was the runner-up at 9.875. Fernandez and See tied for fifth after each turned in a 9.825 and sophomore Jaclyn Kantecki rounded out the scoring with a 9.725.
On the uneven bars, the Illini matched the sixth-best mark in UI history with a season-high 49.225. Fernandez and Weinstein were atop the standings with their 9.875s, and a trio of Illini, Kantecki, sophomore Macy Hyatt and freshman Sarah Fiedler, tied for fourth with a score of 9.825.
Illinois closed out the meet by again resetting the school beam record with a 49.375, surpassing the old mark of 49.325 set two weeks ago at Michigan State. Buckley's 9.950 tied her own school-record mark from 2009 and Stacy Redmond's score from 1995. Joannides came in second by tying her career best with a 9.900 while Weinstein notched a personal-best 9.850 and tied Fernandez for third. See chipped in a career-high 9.825 to clinch the record and tie for sixth.
"This meet was really good preparation for the Big Ten Championships," Landrus said. "We are focused on the process and on controlling what we can by doing the best routines every time."
Up Next: Illinois heads to Minneapolis, Minn., for the Big Ten Championships on Saturday, March 19 at 2 p.m. The Big Ten Network will air the meet live from the Sports Pavilion.