MAC Announces Gymnast and Specialist of the Week

Updated 1/29/2013

Gymnast of the Week
Marie Case, Kent State
Junior, Erie, Pa./Mercyhurst Prep/Lakettes
Marie Case took home three of the five events of the evening for the Golden Flashes in what may have been her best performance of the year during Kent State’s home opener against conference foe Western Michigan and George Washington. Case took the balance beam event with a score of 9.800, topping the other 17 competitors. Case also earned a 9.925 from the judges on the floor exercise, the highest score given to any gymnast during the event. Case had another strong performance on the bars where she posted a 9.850, good for third overall for the event. In her final event of the evening Case received a 9.625 on the vault, finishing 16th. Case was also named the top all-around performer of the tri-meet, when she earned a 39.200 overall for her efforts.

Specialist of the Week 
Rachel Guida, Kent State 
Senior, Cumberland, R.I./Brestyan’s Gymnastics

Rachel Guida broke two personal records during Kent State’s win over conference opponent Western Michigan and George Washington. Guida won the uneven bars event for the Golden Flashes when she posted a 9.900, the second highest score of the evening by any gymnast. Guida also performed on the vault where she tied her previous mark when she was awarded a 9.825. That score was good for third overall for the event, concluding a strong outing by Guida.

Other Nominees: 
Brittney Emmons, Ball State
Senior, Pace, Fla. (Tate) (First City Gymnastics)

Brittney Emmons led Ball State to a victory over Northern Illinois and helped the Cardinals to improve to 2-0 in the Mid-American Conference . . . In the meet vs. NIU, Emmons won the vault with a 9.850 and won the all-around with a 38.700 . . . In addition, Emmons tied for third on the bars with a 9.70 and was fifth on the beam with a 9.625…Her performance on the vault helped the Cardinals to a team vault score of 48.725, which is the ninth highest mark in school history.

Gina Locigno, Bowling Green 
Sophomore, Boca Raton, Fla. (Boca Raton) 

Recorded career highs in three events to help BGSU earn its first win of the season against Eastern Michigan, 194.025-193.900. Locigno posted scores of 9.775 on bars, 9.775 on beam and 9.8 on floor against the Eagles. Making her first appearance on bars this year, Locigno’s routine set the tone early in the lineup, helping the Falcons reach the 49.0 mark for the first time this season. Her solid contributions on each event helped BGSU set season-high scores on bars, beam and floor and earned her top-three overall finishes on beam and floor. The meet marked the first time BGSU has broken 194 since 2010.

Taylor Noonan, Central Michigan
Sophomore, Broomfield, Colo. (Legacy HS)

Going up against competition that included top-ranked Michigan and No. 12 Minnesota, sophomore Taylor Noonan continued her standout season with strong performances in three events. A week after posting a career high 9.925 in the balance beam, Noonan followed it up by tying for second place with a score of 9.850. In the floor exercise, she set a career high, scoring a 9.825 to lead the CMU line-up. In the uneven bars she repeated the feat, establishing a personal best of 9.725. For her efforts, Noonan was named team MVP for the meet.

Brittany Cassar, Eastern Michigan
Senior, Kings Park, N.Y. (Kings Park)

Eastern Michigan senior Brittany Cassar notched a new career-high 9.775 on the uneven parallel bars against Bowling Green, Jan. 26.

Amanda Stepp, Northern Illinois
Sophomore, Lapeer, MI (Lapeer East)(All-American Flames Gymnastix)

Stepp recorded a trio of top five finishes Friday night in NIU’s narrow (.400 point) loss to Ball State in Muncie. Stepp tied for top honors on floor exercise with a season-best 9.775 mark. In the final rotation, she came through under pressure with a 9.700 routine on balance beam that was good for third place. Stepp earned NIU’s second highest score of the meet on vault with a 9.675 to tie for fifth place overall. She has six top five finishes in nine routines on the season.

Caroline O'Brien, Western Michigan
Senior, Loveland, Ohio (Loveland) (Queen City Gymnastics)

Caroline O’Brien competed in three events this week in Western Michigan’s tri-meet with Kent State and George Washington. She turned in a runner-up finish on balance beam with a 9.750 and took third on the uneven bars with a 9.850. On floor, she placed ninth with a 9.750.

Brooklyn Schumacher, Ball State
Sophomore, Norman, Okla. (Norman North) (Bart Conner Gymnastics Academy)

Brooklyn Schumacher helped Ball State to improve to 2-0 in the Mid-American Conference with a win over the Northern Illinois Huskies . . . Schumacher competed in the bars and floor for the Cardinals . . . She tied for first on the bars with a 9.800 . . . She tied for fourth on the floor with a 9.725. 

Lindsay Koch, Bowling Green
Junior, Brunswick, Ohio (Brunswick)

Lindsay Koch, recorded a career-best 9.8 on uneven bars, helping the Falcons to a season-high 49.0 total on the event. Koch’s score smashed her previous personal best of 9.65 and earned her fourth place on the event, as the Falcons got past Eastern Michigan in their first win of the season, 194.025-193.900.

Anna WIllette, Eastern Michigan
Pylesville, Md. (North Harford)

Led the Eagles on the uneven parallel bars and balance beam, Jan. 26, as the Green and White narrowly fell to Bowling Green State University, 194.025-193.900. The sophomore recorded career-high scores of 9.825 in each event, finishing runner-up on the bars while taking first-place honors on the beam.

Megan Melendez, Northern Illinois
Junior, Stafford, VA (North Stafford)

Megan Melendez led the Huskies with a pair of first-place finishes thanks to a pair of 9.800 scores at Ball State. Anchoring the NIU line-up on uneven parallel bars, Melendez tied her career best score with a 9.800 to tie for first place. In the final rotation, Melendez tied her season-best with a 9.800 on balance beam to win the event. Melendez earned two of the five 9.8 or higher scores awarded in the meet. Melendez’ clutch routines helped keep NIU in the meet, as the Huskies dropped a narrow (192.475-192.075) decision to the Cardinal.

Jessi Buis, Western Michigam
Freshman, Holland, Mich. (West Ottawa) (Champion Gymnastics USA)

Freshman Jessi Buis had Western Michigan's only first-place finish in WMU’s tri-meet with Kent State and George Washington this weekend, tying KSU's Chelsea Drooger with a 9.850 on vault. It was Buis' first career title. She also competed on balance beam and placed 10th with a 9.575. Buis’ vault helped WMU post its second highest team vault score in school history with a 48.950