Illinois headed to Nebraska for an intense Big 10 competition, with both teams looking to move up in the rankings and grab a big score in a conference matchup.
The home Nebraska Cornhuskers started out strong on vault, with a 9.900 from Adnerys De Jesus the high score of a dynamic 49.15 rotation. It was Illinois who was the star of the first event, however, jumping out to a lead with a season-high rotation score of 49.425 on bars. Illinois did not count a score below 9.850, and a 9.925 from Rae Balthazor and a 9.900 from Karen Howell made the score a huge one.
Nebraska moved to bars in the second rotation, scoring a huge 49.375 after a pair of 9.900s from Taylor Houchin and Megan Verceles Carr. Illinois struggled on a few landings on vault, losing their lead and just posting a 48.3, the high score of the event being a 9.775 from Kasey Meeks.
In the third rotation, Nebraska extended its lead with a very consistent beam rotation. A 9.900 from Sienna Crouse led a rotation with the lowest counting score a 9.800, totaling a 49.225. Illinois had a few landing errors on floor but overall had a solid rotation, scoring a 48.75 with a 9.875 from Kylie Noonan the highlight.
Nebraska closed out a very impressive meet at home on the floor exercise, ending with their best rotation of the night and putting up a huge 49.5 rotation score to finish with their best total of the season so far, a 197.25. Sierra Hassel and Crouse both scored 9.925s, and Houchin posted a 9.950 that was the highest score of the competition. Houchin also took home the all-around with an impressive 39.525 total.
Illinois lost the opportunity for a big score on their final event, balance beam. The Illini had to count a fall, scoring a 48.2 on the event and finishing with a 194.675. Despite the low final score, there were some definite highlights for Illinois in the meet, with the bar rotation in particular especially promising. Nebraska will be extremely pleased with this meet and will be expected to jump up the rankings for week five.Tags: Adnerys De Jesus, Illinois, Illinois Illini, Karen Howell, Kasey Meeks, Kylie Noonan, Megan Verceles Carr, NCAA Gymnastics, Nebraska, Nebraska Cornhuskers, Rae Balthazor, Sienna Crouse, Sierra Hassel, Taylor Houchin