Ronayne, coaches believe Iowa State has potential to top 197 score


Jack MacDonald/Iowa State Daily

A Iowa State gymnast performs on the balance beam during their tri-meet against Southeast Missouri and Centenary. The Cyclones won the meet with a score of 195.775. 

Austin Anderson

Coaches and gymnasts on the Iowa State gymnastics team have consistently said throughout the season they are waiting in anticipation for the Cyclone team that competes in practice to be the team that competes in meets.

Junior Haylee Young said after the meet against Oklahoma earlier this season, “We are up there with the top schools, in the gym, but nobody has gotten to see that because we let our nerves get to us.”

Two days after the Cyclones got their highest score of the season against Oklahoma, they had their best score of the entire season, a 196.125, against Texas Woman’s. In the two meets since their high score, the Cyclones haven’t been able to reach a 196.000

In order to compete for a bid in the national championships, coach Jay Ronayne knows Iowa State is likely going to need to exceed its highest score this season, which led to a meeting between the coaches.

The one question that was asked was, “How good can we be?”

“We’ve been looking at it as objectively as possible,” Ronayne said. “The potential numbers, with the perfect routines, like we’ve had in [practice], we feel we can be a high 196 to a low 197 team. There is still room for growth. If it a perfect meet comes up, it’ll be a 197.”

A 197.000 would give the Cyclones the 12th highest high-score in the country. The top 36 teams make Regionals, where they are placed into six different regions. In those six regions, the two highest scores on that day advance to Nationals.

“Ideally we would like to peek at NCAA Regionals,” Ronayne said. “A lot has to happen before that but we want to keep building for regionals.”

The first step toward building for regionals is this Friday night against Illinois State and Gustavus Adolphus, in the last home meet in Hilton Coliseum this season.

There are only four meets left before the Big 12 championships, NCAA Regionals and potentially NCAA Nationals, so the stretch run of the season has begun for the Cyclones.

Ronayne said the gymnast’s routines will be finalized after Friday night so the routines put on display in front of Hilton for the final time will be the ones the Cyclones will perform throughout the rest of the season.

Normally, the last home meet of the season is a team’s “Senior Night” but Iowa State doesn’t have any seniors on this year’s roster.

Ronayne said the Cyclones still plan to do something to celebrate the last home meet at Hilton, but didn’t go into too much detail.

“Obviously the Senior Night thing will be missing,” Ronayne said. “We’ll still do some silly things to keep with our traditions like try to make someone laugh during a routine. There won’t be a ceremony but we’ll still have some fun with it.”