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Hawkeyes beat Iowa State

BY ROD ENGBLOM | MARCH 09, 2015 5:00 AM

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The last meet of the year was sweet for the Iowa women’s gymnastics team: It beat rival Iowa State in a close match that ended with a score of 195.775-195.175. 

The victory also was bittersweet for the team; it marked Senior Night and the last regular-season meet and last appearance in Carver-Hawkeye Arena. 

Although emotions were high for the team, head coach Larissa Libby stressed that the season isn’t over. 

“We’re just getting started,” Libby said. “I don’t want them to be thinking that it’s over, and it’s the end.”

The Hawkeyes still have the Big Five meet at Minnesota on March 14 followed by the Big Ten championships at Michigan on March 21.

Even though this wasn’t the last meet for the team, the final meet in Carver brought out some emotions for the team.

“I was hoping to control my emotions a little better, and I almost started crying before my routine,” senior Caitlin Tanzer said. “You just have to stay focused and think every 0.1 of a point counts. You have to forget about your emotions for that moment, and you just have to hit the best routine you have.”  

Tanzer participated in one event, performing first in the floor event and scoring 9.725. 

Even though the meet was especially emotional for the seniors, the team still performed as if it was any other meet. 

“Tonight’s not different; in a sense it is, but we don’t look at it that way,” sophomore Angel Metcalf said. “We look at it as we have one job to do, and we go out there, and we do what we can do, and we control our environment. That’s what we like to do every time.”

Metcalf participated in the all-around, scoring 9.825 in vault, 9.800 in bars, 9.825 on the beam, and 9.875 on the floor. 

But with the Big Ten meet coming up, the team is switching its focus to working hard toward the finals.  

“I feel like we’re starting to make a name for ourselves, especially in the conference,” Tanzer said.

“It would be fun to get out there and show everyone what we’ve been working on. It has been an incredible season, and we’ve been building since the beginning of the season; I expect us to continue to climb.”

The team has earned a reputation this season as being a force to be reckoned with, and it beat the No. 13 team in the country, Minnesota, on Feb. 28. 

But just as during the regular season, the GymHawks are focused on mentally controlling their environment during meets and not worrying about what’s going on around them. 

“When we start focusing on things that are going on around us such as judging and what the other team is falling, we can’t control that,” Libby said. “So we really try to keep them focused on the things that they can control, and that’s their performance.”    

Libby is confident in the Hawkeyes with Big Tens approaching and believes they have yet to have their best performance.    

Although Libby was very clear how the season isn’t over, she still showed some emotion about this year’s graduating class. 

“This class, particularly from their freshman year to now, has been amazing, and we really have ridden this terrible roller coaster of injury, and it’s just not been good,” she said. “So to have it end like this for them, that’s all you can ask for.”


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