UK gymnastics team sends out seniors with a win

Kentucky seniors Katie Carlisle and Cori Rechenmacher are recognized after the final home meet of the season against Ohio State on Friday, March 2, 2018 in Lexington, Ky. Photo by Jordan Prather | Staff

Hayden Hooper

Remembrance was in the air at Memorial Coliseum on Friday night as the No. 9 Kentucky gymnastics team closed the year out in Memorial Coliseum with a boom as the Cats defeated the No. 21 Ohio State Buckeyes 196.850-195.725 on senior night. 

As the Cats got the victory, it was a bittersweet moment for the two seniors, Katie Carlisle and Cori Rechenmacher, as today was their final time competing in Memorial Coliseum. The crowd welcomed them with gracious cheers as they competed on their home floor for the final time. 

“It feels amazing to end on a high note, it feels great to have my team around me,” Carlisle said after the competition. “It’s a bittersweet ending but we still have a lot of gymnastics left to go and we are doing great this year.”

Head coach Tim Garrison spoke about the seniors on his team. 

“They meant a tremendous amount of growth and they helped in regardless whether competing all around or competing into one or two events, they still helped that growth because they helped the other athletes on the team to learn to achieve at a higher level,” he said.

Carlisle competed in the bars event, placing second with a score of 9.875. Rechenmacher competed in the beams and floor events, scoring 9.825 in both, placing fourth in the floor and tied for fifth in the beam. 

The Cats came out with a sense of urgency in both the vault and bars events as Kentucky won with scores of 49.050 and 49.275, respectively. Sophomore Mollie Korth highlighted the striking start by getting top scores in both events with scores of 9.875 and 9.925. 

“It really means a lot, it’s really sad that this is the last time competing in Memorial and this is what they’ve been doing, this is what they’ve known for the past four years but I am excited where life takes them,” Korth said.

After the big start, the momentum kept going for the Cats as they took both the beam and floor events with scores of 49.300 and 49.225. Junior Sidney Dukes won the beam with a 9.925 score and junior Alex Hyland won the floor with a score 9.875.

With the victory, the Cats advance to 5-4 on the with two competitions remaining before the SEC Championships. They will put that record to the test next on March 11 when they travel to face New Hampshire.