Cyclone seniors bid Hilton crowd farewell against Minnesota


Photo:Zhenru Zhang/Iowa State Daily

Jacquelyn Holmes performs on beam during the meet vs. Minnesota on Friday at Hilton Coliseum. Holmes contributed a 9.675 in the event. The Cyclones tied with Minnesota 195.325.

Dylan Montz

As No. 19 Iowa State’s home season ended Friday in a tie against No. 20 Minnesota 195.325-195.325, three ISU seniors performed for the last time in front of the home crowd.

ISU coach Jay Ronayne said the impact left by seniors Alex Grant, Jacquelyn Holmes and Jody McKellar is hard to put into words and they will be missed by the team next year.

“Alex has struggled with injury over her entire career, and this is the best year she has had, so it’s awesome,” Ronayne said. “Jackie has also had injuries through her career, and this is one of her most successful seasons. And Jody is showing us more than she’s ever shown before. So to have our seniors having the best seasons of their careers as well as being team leaders is great. I don’t know what we are going to do without them next year.”

Grant, a native of Toronto, Ontario, ended her home career scoring a 9.775 on the bars. Grant said she has had a terrific time competing at Hilton over her career and being with her team.

“You don’t really get friends like that in a lifetime,” Grant said. “I think we are a really special group, and we are all family, and anything with them is always a good time.”

Holmes, a Charlotte, N.C., native, walked out of Hilton on Friday night, scoring a 9.675 on the balance beam. The thing she said she will the remember most about competing at home is the fans.

“It’s been an experience seeing the fans and having them cheer me on for the past four years, so that is definitely memorable,” Holmes said.

McKellar, hailing from Calgary, Alberta, scored a 9.725 on the vault, a 9.225 while falling on the balance beam and won the uneven bars, scoring a 9.900 in the last home effort of her career. 

“It’s definitely exciting,” McKellar said. “I’m never going to be in this type of atmosphere again with Cyclone support all around me. It hasn’t quite hit me just because our season isn’t ending, probably that last meet is when I will get pretty emotional. I’ll remember this place forever. Hilton Coliseum is actually Hilton Magic.”