Team co-captain Megan Donehue does a release on the uneven bars Friday night. (Photo by Jaren Wilkey/BYU Photo)
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PROVO -- The BYU women’s gymnastics team made its home debut on Friday night in the Smith Fieldhouse, falling to No. 9 Oregon State, 194.550-188.975. Junior Kaylee Gallup posted the high Cougar score on the night with a 9.775 on the floor exercise while junior Danielle Goldman became the first BYU all-arounder of the season, tallying a total score of 36.900.
“This is an awfully young team so we expect to make mistakes,” said BYU head coach Brad Cattermole. “We’re hitting our sets very well in practice but not hitting as well in meets. We’re a lot better team than we’re showing. In time, we’ll improve.”
The Cougars began the night on vault and posted a team score of 47.875, their highest of the night. Four freshmen competed on the apparatus led by Krysten Koval with a 6.675 mark. Two other gymnasts scored in the 9.6 range as junior Danielle Goldman tallied a 9.625 and junior co-captain Megan Donehue recorded a 9.600. However, a 9.850 from Jen Kesler on the uneven bars quickly had the Beavers on top, 48.875 to 47.875.
Two falls on the uneven bars made for a tough outing for the Cougars as they notched a score of 46.575. Junior Melissa Hough paced BYU with a 9.625 followed by junior co-captain McKell Poulson-Merkley at 9.500. Koval once again did the freshmen proud with a 9.400. Meanwhile, Oregon State did not count a score lower than 9.675 on the vault to post a team score of 48.700 and establish a 3.125-point lead through two rotations.
Balance beam once again proved to be a strength for the Cougars as the topped the 47 mark with a 47.475. Gallup came within .025 of tying her career high, posting a 9.775. Canadian National Team member Jennifer Lezeu strutted her stuff on the beam to lead three freshmen Cougars with a score of 9.700, a career best. Two scores of 9.800 led the Beavers on the floor exercise to help them tally a team score of 48.350.
The final rotation for the Cougars came on the floor exercise with a score of 47.050. Goldman led the team with a score of 9.575 while Whitney Olsen posted a 9.475 in place of the injured freshman Holland Davis. But it was not enough to catch the Beavers who tallied a 48.625 team score on the balance beam to seal the meet.
BYU will continue its 2009 campaign next Friday at San Jose State.