Womens gymnastics set for Missouri State

By Matt Hopkinson

The women’s gymnastics team will look to find some stability as it hosts Southeast Missouri State University on Saturday.

The Huskies won their first two meets of the season in comeback fashion, losing their most recent meet after taking a lead in the final rotation. That leads head coach Sam Morreale to believe it’s time for the team to really show what it’s capable of.

“I mean, honestly, we’ve been trying to do that,” Morreale said. “We’ve had enough meets under our belt, whether they were home or away, where we should feel confident and comfortable with what we’re doing. So yes, I feel we’re right there knocking on the door.”

While the success of the team thus far has been a good thing, Morreale still creates new goals for every meet, along with his team’s season goals.

This time around, some of those goals have been met and the bar raised, and some are still being chased, but it’s not the end-all, be-all of performance or success for gymnastics.

Similar to any goal, the key is to set the bar higher, but still make it something reachable.

“We just raised the numbers of what we’re trying to obtain, so [with] our base score, instead of [the] 9.650 we were chasing before, it’s a 9.700 we’re chasing each place for each athlete,” Morreale said. “Sticks, we’re still trying to attain the number we had set from the beginning. We’re getting closer but we’re not quite there yet.”

Morreale also noted that the team has done a better job the last two weeks of improving its start values during routines.

Junior Kim Gotlund also feels that the chemistry has been good for the team, especially with the stepping up of certain gymnasts, like sophomore Amanda Stepp, who played a big part of the Huskies success this year. No matter the gymnast, Gotlund believes that success breed success which then allows the gymnasts to get more comfortable.

“I feel like once the people in front of you are hitting, it’s kind of a chain reaction and everyone just keeps hitting after,” Gotlund said. “It’s good to have them start off on a good note and set the tone for the rest of the meet.”

Gotlund also believes the return to home will serve the team well after coming off their first road meet and loss of the season.

“We have a lot of fun on the road, it’s good team bonding,” Gotlund said. “I think we’re so used to the home atmosphere, so I think it will be good to get back after a loss and get our confidence back up.”