Gymnastics team head to the Burnsley Invitational

Isaac Hunt

Iowa State will travel to Hamilton Gymnasium in Denver to face Alaska and No. 15 Denver in the Burnsley Invitational on Saturday at 7 p.m.

Iowa State (1-2, 0-1 Big 12) will take on Alaska (2-2) for the first time in school history but is 8-10 all-time against Denver (1-3).

Iowa State is coming off of a big win against Iowa, but coach Jay Ronayne is hoping his team will not suffer for that victory.  

“If the team thinks that we’re really good because we won and beat Iowa, we will suffer the consequences,” Ronayne said. “If [they] realize we were not as good as we can be against Iowa and we have a lot of improving to do, then there won’t be any hangover. … It’s up to us to realize that we’re really good, but we haven’t really shown it yet.”

Both Ronayne and sophomore Michelle Shealy mentioned working on handstands on bars as their team focusing on the “little things.” If the Cyclones are going to score high this Saturday, they are going to do it through details. 

After counting falls in every meet so far, the team is aiming to cut down mistakes. However, Ronayne said there’s a possibility his team will count a fall again.

“We’re in a sport where we’re chasing perfection,” Ronayne said. “It’s extremely rare to catch it, so there’s always mistakes. We need to minimize the mistakes we’ve been making.”

Ronayne, in his sixth season, mentioned that his team is striving for the scoring range of 196 to help get it to the NCAA Championship in April. Junior co-captain Elizabeth Stranahan said she was confident they can get there Saturday. 

The Cyclones will not have the luxury of being at home, where they have performed their last two meets. The ISU coaches are practicing a little differently for the upcoming meet. 

“Something we do in the gym is try to change up our normal routines a little bit,” Ronayne said. “One reason is [the] rotation is different. We’re going to throw them off balance to prepare them for a different environment.”

This is the first meet of the season that is not a dual for Iowa State. Ronayne and Shealy said the team will have to adjust to the rotation of adding a third team to help them stay focused. 

“One of our weaknesses has been losing focus,” Shealy said. “Staying focused is something we’re all trying to do in the meet. 

Confidence is one thing the ISU gymnastics team has not suffered from this season with several girls saying that has been emphasized in the gym. 

“Wins really help boost our confidence,” Stranahan said. “[Our win against Iowa] can only help.”