With nostalgia running high on senior day, Christine Nguyen turned in a performance to remember.
In her last performance at Carmichael Arena, the senior swept all four events on her way to recording a score of 39.575, the fourth highest all-around score in North Carolina history.
Nguyen’s historic performance, along with two other personal best all-around performances from teammates Kara Wright and Morgan Evans, led UNC to a dominant 196.225-187.200 victory against Rutgers on Saturday.
But the Tar Heels’ success wasn’t just limited to an individual level. The team recorded its best overall score since April 2004 and improved on its top performance this year by two points.
“This is the best meet we’ve had in several years,” coach Derek Galvin said. “I wanted the seniors to go out and have the best meet they could possibly have in their final home meet, and they did that.”
Even more impressive, North Carolina hit all four events, meaning no falls were recorded in any of the 20 UNC performances in the meet.
The Tar Heels started off strong, jumping out to a commanding four-point lead after the first round of events. The strong showing on the vault, Galvin said, set the tone for the Tar Heels’ success on the next three events.
Though UNC had a large margin for error from the start of the meet, the Tar Heels refused to ease up on the Scarlet Knights and continued to impress the judges.
“If anything, we went harder,” Nguyen said. “We knew we could improve more, and today we just pulled it all together.”
With Rutgers’ worst showing of the year, the Tar Heels received their largest margin of victory this season.
Saturday’s victory came after a great performance at Maryland on Tuesday, one that Galvin said garnered a lot of confidence for the Tar Heels as they enter the postseason.
With two big wins in a row, Galvin said the Tar Heels are peaking at just the right time.
UNC will be competing next in the East Atlantic Gymnastics League Championships on Saturday with the NCAA Regional Championships on the horizon.
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