The North Carolina gymnastics team started its 2019 season with a statement victory in the Lindsey Ferris Invitational, sweeping three opponents in the process.
UNC (3-0) finished first with a score of 194.175, followed by George Washington (193.525), Ball State (193.200) and Cornell (190.750). The Tar Heels took home first place in both the vault and floor exercises and had 14 top-10 finishes on the day.
The meet began with the parallel uneven bars, as junior Grace Donaghy led the way with a third-place finish in the event. The junior scored a 9.750 and was followed by sophomore Rylie Dewhurst, who scored 9.725, good for seventh place.
Five Tar Heels finished in the top-10 for balance beam, led by junior Khazia Hislop, who scored 9.750. Hislop was closely followed by Donaghy, junior Alexis Allen, first-year McKenna Appleton and senior Jamie DeCicco, who all finished sixth with a score of 9.700.
UNC dominated the floor exercise and finished with 49.125. Hislop again led the way, as she and Madison Hargrave tied for first with scores of 9.875.
In the last event, North Carolina entered tied with Ball State and left with three overall wins on the day. The Tar Heels finished with a score of 48.350, good for second best among the four teams. Hislop again fared well, finishing first with a score of 9.825.
Who stood out?
Hislop starred on the day, following a sophomore season where she was named second-team All-America. Hislop finished tied for first in the floor exercise, then inhabited the podium alone for her win in the vault category.
Hargrave also finished first in the floor, and fourth in vault to help lead her team to victory.
When was it decided?
Going into the last event, North Carolina and Ball State were tied for the lead. In the last event, UNC finished second and ended up with an overall victory to defeat all three squads. Hislop and Hargrave led the way in the last event to guarantee the outcome.
Why does it matter?
The invitational was the first meet of the season for head coach Derek Galvin’s squad. He could not have asked for a better result, as UNC swept its competition for the win in the first event of 2019.
When do they play next?
UNC next faces Oklahoma and Ball State in Chapel Hill on Saturday. The meet kicks off at 2 p.m. in Carmichael Arena.
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