Gymnastics end season at NCAA Regionals

Gymnastics end season at NCAA Regionals

By Scott A. Nicol

DeKALB — The gymnastics team ended its historic season Saturday at the NCAA Regionals in Fayetville, Arkansas with junior Ashley Potts coming .025 total points short of making it to NCAA Nationals.

“Ashley had a great meet [Saturday],” said Head Coach Sam Morreale. “She missed qualifying for Nationals by .025 so she was right there in the hunt.”

Potts, who had a combined score of 39.150, said being that close to Nationals and not making it hurts right now but will fuel the fire for her heading into next season.

“Right now I’m a little annoyed by [not making Nationals],” Potts said. “But it will make me work harder next year to not have that happen again and actually make it [to Nationals].”

Four members of the gymnastics team competed in regionals, including Potts, junior Katherine Prentice, seniors Jamyra Carter and Courtney Dowdell with junior Andie Van Voorhis traveling as an alternate.

Carter and Potts both recorded a 9.875 on the parallel bars to tie for ninth place.

Carter tied the 20-year parallel bars record March 11 against Central Michigan University with a score of 9.950.

Morreale said Carter was ranked second in the region on parallel bars heading into Regionals, and her consistency all season showed the strides she made as a competitior.

Potts said the experience will help the team moving into next season, and will help her confidence as she knows she is able to compete with the best gymnasts in the region.

“I didn’t really expect much coming into [Regionals],” Potts said. “I wasn’t really sure where I stand, but it was cool being able to stand up there and compete with everyone from bigger schools.”

Morreale said for Potts and Prentice, the experience of getting to Regionals and knowing they can compete with the top talent level is something they will bring back to the team for next season.

“It was by far our best season in a long time,” Morreale said. “We achieved a lot of our goals and broke a lot of records. The hope is, the two juniors coming back from [Regional’s] with what they experienced can help propel us as a group and a team next year.”