Gymnastics team takes second at MAC Championship


Sean Reed

Senior Tara Kofmehl competes on floor exercise during Friday’s NIU Tri-Meet in DeKalb. Kofmehl finished the event with a 9.925, tying her career best on floor. (Sean Reed | Northern Star)

By Noah Silver, Sports Reporter

DeKALBThe NIU women’s gymnastics team took second at the MAC Championship on Saturday in Ypsilanti, Michigan.

The Huskies finished with a 196.125 overall score, defeating the University of Western Michigan University (196.075), Ball State University (195.900), Kent State University (195.325), Eastern Michigan University (195.025) and Bowling Green State University (192.550). Central Michigan University took home the title, scoring 196.275.

“We wanted to be in the position with an opportunity to win,” head coach Sam Morrale said. “Could we have done a little better in certain spots? Yes, but that’s the meet. We did pretty much everything we planned on doing, so that was awesome. Super proud of what they did, they fought the whole day, they stayed positive.”

Freshman Isabella Sissi scored the best for the Huskies on vault, placing ninth with a 9.800. Sophomore Brookelyn Sears followed behind here with a 9.775 for 12th place.

NIU did better on the uneven parallel bars as junior Natalie Hamp took second place with a 9.900. Sophomore Alyssa Al-Ashari followed close behind with a 9.875 for third.

Stiff competition on the balance beam ended with Al-Ashari and freshman Ellery Werner tying in sixth place with a 9.850.

Senior Tara Kofmehl dominated on the floor exercise, scoring an outstanding 9.950 to tie for first place. Sissi placed ninth with a 9.850.

“Tara’s finish [on floor] was awesome,” Morreale said. “At that point, we didn’t know where we stood or what we needed. Brookelyn did a good job setting her up and then she goes out and hits probably her best routine of the year, which is just how you want to go out as a senior. It was awesome for her to get the win and then to cap that with being named the Senior Gymnast of the Year.”    

Sears finished the all around with a 39.175 putting her in second place, while senior Morgan Hooper ended in tenth with a 38.375

The Huskies finished the season 10-10 overall and 3-3 in conference play.