Huskie gymnasts buck Broncos

By Laura Higgins

Momentum and team spirit carried the NIU women’s gymnastics squad to victory this past weekend.

The Huskies posted a 185.85-184.25 dual-meet triumph Saturday over host Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo. And coach Bobbie Cesarek credits much of the victory to a positive, upbeat mentality.

“We’ve had better meets technically, but our attitudes were really good,” Cesarek said. “I really think the team spirit is what carried us to the win this weekend.

“It may not have been as big a margin as we would have preferred, but it’s a win and I’m really pleased with the way everyone supported everyone else. It was great team unity and the spirit was wonderful.”

While the two teams split the individual event blue ribbons, the Huskies outscored the Broncos as a team in three out of four events.

NIU began the meet on the uneven parallel bars and tallied for a 46.80-44.95 team edge. Sandy Escobar paced the Huskies with a 9.50 which was good for first place. Teammate Vicki Thimgan followed in second with 9.4.

The balance beam was the only event Western Michigan outscored the Huskies, posting a 46.80-44.95 edge. Kristen Milanowski led the Bronco sweep of the top three places with a 9.4.

“Bars were a really good start for us,” Cesarek said. “We hit a couple of great routines and that really started the momentum for us.

“And the kids really looked a lot better on the beam this weekend. We had only one person avoid a fall, but even with those falls we were scoring 9.1’s. That’s how good the routines were.”

The Huskies will be home again next Friday where they hope to boost their 9-3 record in a meet against Central Michigan University. The outing is scheduled for 7 p.m at Chick Evans Field House.