Gymnastics ends season with fourth-place finish at regionals

The GW gymnastics team finished fourth at the Southeast Regional in Gainseville, Fla., failing to advance to the NCAA National Championships next weekend. The top two finishers, first-place University of Georgia and second-place University of Florida, moved on to NCAAs.

Georgia won the Southeast Regional with a team score of 197.775. Performing in its home gym, Florida’s team managed a score of 196.650, followed by the University of Maryland, which finished in third place with a score of 195.850.

GW finished with a total score of 194.675.

Devin McCalla led GW in the all-around with a 39.100, managing an eighth-place finish. Jessica Mantak finished 10th in the all-around with a score of 38.900. Co-captain Darden Wilee finished her GW career with a 38.825 score in the all-around.

McCalla tied for fourth place in the floor exercise (9.90), tied for 22nd on the vault (9.725) and tied for 17th on the bars (9.750).

Mantak finished tied for 17th on the bars with McCalla (9.750), tied for 18th on the beam (9.750) and tied for 10th on the floor exercise with teammate Rachel Mann (9.825).

Melissa Suter and Kacey Coyne also contributed to GW’s efforts. Suter had a strong day on the uneven bars by setting a personal record of 9.825, which earned her a tie for 10th place. Coyne scored a 9.70 on the vault, which gave her a tie for 25th place.

Heading into the competition, Georgia was heavily favored to win the southeast region. But GW was expected to battle Florida for second place. The two teams met once this season in Gainseville, where Florida defeated GW 196.525-195.00.

Wilee had said GW felt confident in competing this weekend and believed that Florida was nervous about GW.

GW’s fourth place finish ended its impressive season with a record of 22-12, and it also ended the careers of senior co-captains Wilee and Lindsey Ferris. Next season GW coach Margie Foster-Cunningham will likely rely on McCalla and Mantak to lead the way to that elusive NCAA Championship bid.

Before the start of the season, the gymnasts set high goals for themselves and reached many of them, including their fourth consecutive Atlantic 10 Title.

Despite failing to qualify for the NCAA Championships, GW greatly improved from its performance at Regionals last year. GW took sixth at Regionals last year with a total team score of 191.650. Both McCalla and Wilee improved on their all-around scores from last year, which were 38.975 and 38.150, respectively.

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