Raleigh, N.C. - The Bowling Green State University gymnastics team totaled a 193.300 across four events at the Sweetheart Invitational to finish sixth. After a rough start on beam, the Falcons rolled to a season-best 49.125 on floor, led by Megan Harrington and Gina Locigno, who each posted 9.875. Bowling Green finished with solid, but not spectacular rotations on vault and uneven bars.
Host N.C. State came away with the win, scoring 195.675 to narrowly defeat North Carolina (195.550). Pittsburgh (194.750), George Washington (193.950), William & Mary (193.650) and Bowling Green rounded out the field.
The Falcons began on beam, where the team ran into trouble early with three gymnasts coming off the equipment. Harrington and Jamilah Ali steadied the ship late in the lineup, scoring 9.7 each. Counting two falls, Bowling Green started the meet with a dismal 47.425.
After a bye, the Falcons came roaring back on floor exercise. Every gymnast hit, with season highs coming for Harrington (9.875), Locigno (9.875), Nocella (9.85) and Valentini (9.775). The total of 49.125 was the highest BGSU has scored on any event this season.
The Falcons were steady on vault, despite competing only five gymnasts. Harrington, Sunny Marchand and Nocella led the way, scoring 9.725 for an overall score of 48.400.
On the final event, the Falcons rebounded with six steady routines on the uneven bars. Caroline Ellingboe hit for a 9.775, followed by Harrington (9.7), Nocella (9.675), Ali (9.625) and Koch (9.575). The team scored 48.350 on the final event to close out the meet - a step toward the Mid-American Conference Championships in late March.
The Falcons return home for their next meet, a tri-meet featuring MAC opponents Ball State and Eastern Michigan. The meet will take place Saturday, Feb. 23 at 4 p.m. in Anderson Arena.