COLLEGE PARK, M.d. - The Bulldogs traveled to Maryland Friday to face some tough competition after the Ivy Classic. Yale held their own, placing second among fierce competitors that included the host team, Penn and Temple. The Bulldogs had a fantastic meet, resulting in a score of 192.900.The Terps took first earning a 195.050. Penn followed close behind the Bulldogs receiving a 192.175 team score. As a team, Yale is now ranked 56th nationally; averaging a 193.125 for the season.
The Bulldogs were off to a great start on the floor exercise. All seven gymnasts competing stepped up and gave spectacular performances. Five gymnasts earned a 9.625 or higher. Sophomore Jade Buford was once again at the top of the Bulldogs floor lineup, posting a 9.700. Junior Kiarra Alleyne and first-year Alyssa Firth came away with scores of 9.625 anf 9.700. The score was a career high for Alleyne. Next up, senior Sloane Smith competed for the Bulldogs. Sophomore Emma Firmstone came away with a 9.775. Floor line-up finished off with a season-high score for sophomore Rebecca Chong (9.550). This team proved why they are ranked 60th nationally on this event.
Gymnasts then moved on to vault, where the Bulldogs are ranked 58th nationally. Sophomore Anna Jennings proved how much she could contribute to the apparatus earning a 9.500 with a yurchenko full. Her score is a new season high. Firmstone had yet another strong performance, scoring a 9.500. Buford continued her impressive all-around outing with another huge vault, 9.625. Firth and Baldovino both competed on their second event of the day, scoring 9.625 and 9.600 with their yurchenko fulls. Chong finished the rotation sticking her yurchenko half, posting a 9.800.
Next, Yale had one of their strongest events, the uneven bars. The Bulldogs' most consistent event this season is ranked 57th nationally, where they are averaging a 48.329.They have attained back-to-back season-high individual scores on the event coming into the Maryland meet. Firth started this rotation off with a clean, hit routine earning a 9.400. Buford continued her all-around competition with a 9.825 on the apparatus. This score is a new season- and career- high for this Bulldog. Baldovino continued her presence in the uneven bar lineup with a solid 9.800. Wang came away from the event with the top scores for Yale (9.850). This is Wang's fifth 9.800 or higher of this season. Uneven bars specialist senior Megan Ryan rounded out the rotation for the Bulldogs, scoring a massive 9.725.
Lastly, Yale made their way to the balance beam, where they are ranked 60th nationally. First-year Charlotte Cooperman proved how much she could contribute to the apparatus as a rookie. She led Yale off with a hit set (9.600). Alleyne made her second showing of this competition following close behind Cooperman with a high score of 9.500. Buford also had a great beam routine for the Bulldogs, finishing with a score of 9.500. Firmstone finished up her all-around competition with a 9.700 on this event. Wang was the final Bulldog to compete on the apparatus, hitting her beam set.
At the end of the competition, Yale had three all-around competitors: Baldovino, Buford and Firmstone. Baldovino put together four fantastic routines to finish with a score of 38.400. Buford continued her four-for-four hit routine streak receiving a 38.650, earning a third-place finish. Firmstone finished with a score of 38.350.
Improving almost four points since the first meet of the season, the Bulldogs are getting excited for their next competition next Sunday at New Hampshire, Mar. 11.
report by Anna Jennings '20, Yale Sports Publicity