EAST LANSING - Michigan State captured individual event titles on vault, bars, beam and floor in tonight's quad meet with No. 19 Arizona, Eastern Michigan and Bowling Green. Due to travel restrictions, BGSU wasn't able to compete at Rutgers and therefore competed in East Lansing. The Spartans scored a 194.350 for a fourth-place finish behind Arizona, Bowling Green and Eastern Michigan who posted 195.450-195.250-195.225 finishes.
The Spartans started on vault where they earned a 48.800 as a team. Senior Alina Cartwright led the way for MSU, tying her career-best 9.950 and placing first. Junior Lisa Burt tallied a 9.800 and tied for sixth place, while freshman Anna Gamelo tied for 15th with a 9.750.
Moving to bars, Burt placed first with a 9.900. Sophomore Mackenzie Smith followed suit, earning a career-high 9.875 and a second-place finish. Cartwright tied for eighth with a 9.800 while sophomore Kira Frederick marked a 9.750, tying for 16th. As a team, the Spartans posted a 49.025 and tied for first alongside Eastern Michigan.
In the third rotation, MSU was led by freshman Hailee Westney who posted a career-best 9.850 and won the event for the first time in her career. Junior Brittany Holmes followed Westney, placing 12th with a 9.725. Beam proved to be the most challenging event for the Spartans, who posted a 47.325.
The team rallied on floor in the final rotation of the day, posting a 49.200 as a team. Sophomore Elena Lagoski scored a 9.900 and won the event for the eighth time this season. On floor, Lagoski is currently tied for seventh in the nation. Burt followed Lagoski, scoring a 9.875 and taking second. Frederick earned a third-place finish with a 9.850, while freshman Anna Gamelo tied for seventh with a 9.800.
Burt competed all-around for the 10th time this season, earning a 38.575 for a fifth-place finish. Coming into tonight's meet, Burt ranked 13th in the nation in all-around competition with five crowns.
Tonight the seniors said goodbye at their final meet in Jenison Fieldhouse. Alina Cartwright, Ashley Noll and Ashley Stevenson were all honored with their families among Spartan fans. This group of seniors has led the way for MSU gymnastics and left a path of work ethic, determination and camaraderie for generations of future Spartans.
"We're really, really proud of these three seniors," said head coach Kathie Klages. "I'm really proud of them. They helped change the culture of this team and really made a huge difference in our program with taking us a step forward."
The Spartans return to action on Saturday, March 14 to face Illinois, Ohio State, Maryland and Nebraska at the B1G Five Meet in Lincoln, Neb. The following weekend, the Spartans will compete in Ann Arbor, Mich. at the Big Ten Championships.
"It's not over yet, we've got a lot of work to do before this season is over," said Klages. "We had three great events tonight. It's just a matter of fixing beam and going out there again and showing them what we're really capable of."