Cyclone gymnastics back at Hilton against Lindenwood

Iowa State junior Maddie Diab performs during the floor exercise in the Cyclones’ gymnastics meet against the University of Nebraska on Jan. 7.

Hailey Dohnal

After winning both competitions Friday and Sunday with lots of traveling in between, Cyclone gymnastics is back at home Friday night against Lindenwood.

Although a two-competition weekend was physically and mentally challenging, Iowa State head coach Jay Ronayne said his team stayed focused and that the team had a lot of fun — which he says is always the goal. 

The team is coming off multiple career highs and season highs from both individual gymnasts and the team as a whole.

In addition, the team saw multiple high-scoring routines.

One of those highs being a season-high uneven bars score. After losing multiple tenths on their bars dismounts at previous meets, the Cyclones stuck many more this time around, which earned them those tenths back.

“It’s so much more fun when you stick a bunch of dismounts,” Ronayne said.

A ton of confidence is in the air as the Cyclones have not had a home meet since Jan. 28 and could not be more excited to get back into Hilton Coliseum. 

Junior Maddie Diab will be one to watch on the floor exercise Friday night. Over the weekend, Diab scored a 9.95 and is capable of scoring a 10.0, a perfect score.

Ronayne said that a handful of his gymnasts are also capable of scoring a 10.0 and that it may happen Friday.

Redshirt senior Arianna Orrego will be one to watch on the uneven bars. Orrego scored a 9.925 on the event and said that one of her biggest motivators is doing it for her team.

It’s important to note, however, that scores typically fluctuate from competition to competition, and 10s are very difficult to achieve.

“Whatever the score is, it turns out to be what it is,” Ronayne said.

Nonetheless, Cyclone gymnastics will be a fun team to watch not only Friday night but throughout the rest of the season.

And, if you’re looking for an incentive to attend, if a gymnast scores a 10.0, everyone in the building gets free donuts. 

From their last home meet until now, the team has had tremendous improvement.

As competition season continues, each meet will continue to be practice for the next one. 

“We’re knocking on the door of some records and we’re chasing them,” Ronayne said. 

One of the biggest motivators for the team is the positive energy that their home crowd brings, and it is something they feed off of.

“I just want people to show up at Hilton,” Ronayne said. 

Friday could not come fast enough for Ronayne and his team. “We can’t wait to get back in there and get a little taste of that Hilton magic.”

The Cyclones will compete at 6:30 p.m. Friday at Hilton Coliseum against Lindenwood.