Haylee Young and Meaghan Sievers shine at first home meet back in Iowa


Emily Blobaum/Iowa State Daily

Freshman Meaghan Sievers sticks her dismount after her balance beam routine during the meet against West Virginia on Feb. 5. Sievers scored a 9.75, contributing to the Cyclones’ narrow 195.3-195.2 victory over the Mountaineers.  

Rachel Given

The sparkly pink leotards weren’t the only things shining throughout the night at Hilton Coliseum on Friday. ISU gymnastics’ freshman Meaghan Sievers and sophomore Haylee Young were the team’s stars of the night.

Sievers has been a standout since her first meet as a Cyclone, and often anchors every event. Young has also had a successful freshman season. 

Iowa State started on the vault for the first event.

“It’s really great starting on vault mainly because over the past few years we have struggled on that event, but we’re getting better, so we feel a little more confident to be starting on it,” Ronayne said.

Sievers had a high vault, right down the middle of the runway, with a small bounce in her landing, and earned a 9.800, taking second place, just behind Young.

Young had a rough start to her uneven bars routine, beginning with a fall. But that didn’t stop her from finishing out her routine after a quick word from head coach Jay Ronayne.

“I just let go a little early,” Young said. “I felt it when I let go, you know, it happens sometimes in gymnastics. It’s just you have to know what you feel when you make a mistake and fix it next time.”

Sievers had a tough routine on the uneven bars, but proved the vigorous moves were no feat to her. Sievers stuck her landing and tied with sophomore Hilary Green for the highest score of the evening for the team with a 9.825.

The Cyclones exploded from the sidelines after Sievers landed and met her down the mats for high-fives and hugs.

The beam was easily the best event of the night for the Cyclones, with the entire team earning at least a 9.625 or higher. Sievers and Young earned second and third place for the team, respectively.

“We switched her series to something she used to do a long time ago, she hurt her ankle when she started doing it in practice, so we took it out, but we just put it back in,” Ronayne said. “I’m really proud of the way she was able to make that transition and make it look easy.”

Sievers reached a season-high on the event with a score of 9.775.

“Beam is critical, if you are not right now, you’re gonna lose tenths all over the place. We did a great job on beam,” Ronayne said.

The Cyclones’ favorite event, the floor, was where the team shined the brightest.

Sievers had a shaky first pass in her sassy floor routine, but quickly cleaned up and ended the final two passes without error. Young finished the floor event, with a spunky, high-energy routine.

All three passes were met without error as the entire team exploded from the sidelines. Her almost-perfect routine earned a 9.900, matching her career-high. Her routine also earned first place in the entire competition.

“The talent that we have,” Ronayne said. “They trust their tumbling passes so much that they go out and attack and perform.”

The team meets back at Hilton Coliseum on Sunday at 2 p.m. to take on Nebraska, UW-La Crosse and North Carolina State.

“I feel good, we gave it our all and we had a couple mistakes, but we can that to fuel our fire for Sunday,” Young said.