It’s time more people paid attention to the MAC, and I am going to tell you why.
There are currently four MAC teams sitting in regionals contention, and none of those teams are reigning conference heavyweight Central Michigan. This is especially exciting for Western Michigan because they are the only MAC team to have never qualified a full team.
Both the Broncos and the Eagles have had exceptional starts to their 2021 seasons, and this face off is all but guaranteed to be a close matchup. At the Eagles invitational two weeks ago, Eastern Michigan edged out Western Michigan by just over two tenths of a point; but this has the potential to go either way. The Eagles are strongest on bars and beam, while the Broncos are better on vault and floor. It truly could come down to who has the better day on their weaker events.
Individually, keep an eye on sophomore Payton Murphy for the Broncos; Murphy came very close to beating the reigning all around record (set by alumna Rachael Underwood in 2018) last week. Freshman Sarah Moravansky, who took the all around title last week with a career best 39.175, is another one to watch for the Broncos. For the Eagles, junior Caitlin Satler has been having herself quite a season, setting new career bests on beam (9.925) and floor (9.900). And I would be remiss if I didn’t mention senior Courtney Bezold, who is an absolutely stunning bar-worker.
Worth noting: At the Broncos meet against Kent State on Thursday, the Broncos scored above a 196 for only the fifth time in program history, and recorded a 49-plus on three of four events (last achieved in 2015).
UPDATE: looks like Satler is out today.
Rotation 1: Western Michigan vault, Eastern Michigan bars
Binstock (WMU): FTY, looked a little piked in the air and a hop back. 9.700
Roberts (EMU): Short first HS. Jeager to overshoot. Little shy on her final HS. FTDT dismount, holds the stick with a lean 9.725
Thomas (WMU): FTY, piked down, small hop. 9.700
Crossen (EMU): Bail to HS, short on that HS. Nice Tkatchev. DLO dismount with some leg sep but holds the stick. 9.800
Harrison (WMU): Good amplitude on the FTY, hop back, slight pike down. 9.800
Boris (EMU): Hecht mount to start. Good HS. Blind change piked jaeger, nice. Bail to HS, looked a touch shy. Finishes with a FTDT with a hop back. 9.800
Moravansky (WMU): FTY, looked a little piked – hop back. This camera angle is not ideal. 9.825
Parris (EMU): Piked geinger. Bail to HS was sharp. Finishes with a DLO, lands a little short and takes a step back.
Murphy (WMU): FTY, little piked it looked like, step back. 9.800
Rondeau (EMU): Good first HS. Blind change big jaeger to overshoot. Good final HS. DLO, sticks it. That was nice. 9.875
Ludwig went before Rondeau, so that was weird.
Ludwig (WMU): Yurchenko half, step forward. 9.800
Bezold (EMU):Full to jaeger to overshoot, lovely. Touch shy on the final HS. DLO hop back. 9.850
Exhibition on vault and bars.
AFTER ONE: Eastern Michigan 49.050, Western Michigan 48.925
Solid start for both teams, season high for WMU on vault and just shy of the season high for EMU on bars. Rondeau had an exceptionally lovely routine for the Eagles.
Rotation 2: Western Michigan bars, Eastern Michigan vault
Harden (EMU): … did they not show Harden? They seemed to start with bars. Okay they showed a replay.. front pike with a hop forward. 9.725
Tishkoff (WMU): Maloney with some leg sep. Good HS. Bail to HS, shy on the HS. Finishes with a DLO and a hop forward. 9.650
Kosanovich (EMU): Front pike, good form. Small step forward. 9.750
Petrousek (WMU): Great first HS. Maloney with a little bit of leg separation. Another pretty HS. Bail to HS, body form a little loose. Blind full double pike dismount. 9.750
Parris (EMU): … did they not show Parris either? I am confused.
Murphy (WMU): Blind change to a deltchev, nice. Bail to HS, little shy there. Finishes with a blind change rudi dismount, step forward. 9.700
Okay they did not go in the right order, it looks like. FTY from Parris. 9.700
Crossen (EMU): Again – did we not show Crossen? What is happening here. 9.725
Moravansky (WMU): Blind change to a big straddle jaeger to overshoot, lovely. Good final HS. DLO, almost holds the stick but shuffles at the end. 9.825
Roberts (EMU): FTY, little pikey, hop back. 9.700
Olivier (WMU): Piked geinger, little leg sep. Bail to HS was lovely. Finishes with a blind full double back and a step back. 9.800
Rondeau (EMU): Just a layout, hop back. 9.500
Harrison (WMU): all they showed of Harrison was her dismount, which was a FTDL and a hop forward.
Okay, here is a replay. Blind change straddle jaeger to overshoot, good.
I don’t know what is going on with the order of things here… seems to be a free for all. 9.825 for Harrison.
AFTER TWO: Western Michigan 97.825, Eastern Michigan 97.650
It feels a little bit like a free for all in terms of when athletes are going on each event, but its fine. Bring on the chaos.
Nice bar rotation for the Broncos, just shy of their season high. Little rougher for the Eagles, seemed to have a last minute lineup change at the end too for Rondeau (in place of Borris) so not sure what happened there. Western Michigan pulls ahead at the halfway mark.
Rotation 3: Western Michigan beam, Eastern Michigan floor
Binstock (WMU): Beat jump, shy on her straddle quarter. BHS LOSO, solid. Switch half, nice. Finishes with a RO 1.5 and a hop. 9.775
Why are both teams competing simultaneously? This is needlessly chaotic.
Kosanovich (EMU): Leaps looked good…Double back with a big scoot back. That’s all we got to see. 9.675
Thomas (WMU): BHS LOSO, balance check. Full turn was good. Front aerial, another balance check there. Leap series was a little shy of 180. Finishes with a side aerial full, little hop. 9.800
Boris (EMU): I think we missed the opening of her routine too. Front full front lay, not a lot of height there but good landing. Finishes with a double back, lands chest a little low. 9.850
Seriously is someone in a hurry? I don’t understand why they aren’t waiting for beam to finish before starting on floor.
Moravansky (WMU): BHS LOSO, good. Side aerial, balance check with a lean. switch leap back LOSO, another balance check. (Yep, I can hear Gregory starting on floor). BHS 1.5 dismount, nice. 9.725
Gregory (EMU): 1.5 front lay, right to the corner. Double back and steps out of bounds. 9.725
Tishkoff (WMU): ….
Crossen (EMU): I guess we’re going before WMU even starts on beam now. This is chaotic. Okay, lets see here – Opens with a double pike, big lean back, can’t tell if she’s OOB or not (weird camera angle). Front lay front full, little bouncy on the landing. Finishes with a double back, underrotated and lands in a deep knee bend. 9.700
Ok now we have Tishkoff: Leaps looked a little shy of 180. Beat jump side aerial, big bend at the waist. Side aerial full dismount, small step. 9.775
Rondeau (EMU): Opens with a double back stuck cold, nice. Second combo pass was also nice, good form. Finishes with a 1.5 to split jump, good. Nice routine. 9.875
Murphy (WMU): cutting back to Murphy, front toss. Full turn was good. BHS LOSO, solid. Beat jump ring jump, good leg position. Side aerial to a full, stuck. 9.950 for Murphy! Career best.
Roberts (EMU): Double pike, looked a tiny bit underrotated but sticks the landing. 1.5 front lay, nice. FHS back 1.5 to finish. Nice routine. 9.825
Mamelka (WMU): BHS LOSO, and she’s off. Side aerial to split jump, slow connection there. Gainer tucked full dismount. 9.225
AFTER THREE: Western Michigan 146.850, Eastern Michigan 146.625
I would love to know why we are having two routines happening simultaneously during a dual meet, but that’s fine.
Career best score for Murphy on beam today, and the rest of the line up looked solid as well, minus a fall from Mamelka. Eastern had a great floor rotation, led by Rondeau with her 9.875. The final rotation will definitely make things close; beam is where the Eagles really shine and they have taken the lead back many times on this event in the past.
Rotation 4: Western Michigan floor, Eastern Michigan beam
What order will we actually go in for this final rotation?! No one knows.
Stuckey (EMU): Over rotates her full turn a bit. BHS LOSO beat jump, good. (I can hear floor starting. Super) Standing back LOSO, slight balance check. Side aerial tucked full dismount, small hop. 9.725
Moravansky (WMU): Shy on her split in her leap series. Front lay front full, good. 9.625
Parris (EMU): Switch leap switch side, looked a little shy of 180. BHS LOSO, good. Full turn showed good control. Side aerial, balance check but covers. RO 1.5 dismount, tries to hold the stick but leans forward and has to take a step to salute. 9.850
Petrousek (WMU): FHS front full front lay, not a lot of power I’m impressed she got that around to her feet. Finishes with a big double pike, big step back but holds control of the lunge. 9.675
Price (EMU): cat leap front toss BHS, keeps everything moving through the connections. Illusion turn, love that. Don’t see that too often. Split jump front Gainer 1/1 dismount. 9.825
Harrison (WMU): Big double back to start, nice. Front lay front full, runs out of it a little but but good otherwise. Good straddle positions on her leaps. Finishes with a double pike, too much power and leans way back on the lunge but keeps it in bounds. 9.800
Gregory (EMU): BHS LOSO, good. Pretty tick tock (is that what its called?) BHS 1.5 dismount. 9.875
Binstock (WMU): Beeeautiful opening combo pass. Great positions on her leaps. Finishes with a fantastic double pike, great control. 9.850
Commentator said they are doing “block format” hence the routines happening at the same time.
Crossen (EMU): Front toss beat jump, good. Switch to sheep, would like to see head a little further back on the sheep. Nice gainer full dismount. 9.850
Murphy (WMU): Punch front through to high double back, good. Front 1.5 to straddle, excellent. Pretty switch ring, good height. Finishes with RO double pike, controlled lunge back. Great routine. 9.925 (ties school record set in 2004)
Rondeau (EMU): Cutting back to Rondeau now… RO 1.5 dismount stuck. Based on cheers I’m guessing the rest of her routine was great as well. 9.950 (career best!)
THIS IS CLOSE, WOW. Knew it would be, but still.
Ludwig (WMU): Punch front through to double back, stuck. Shy of 180 on her leaps. Fun choreo here. RO double pike, controlled lunge. 9.925
FINAL: Western Michigan 196.025, Eastern Michigan 195.975
All around: Murphy 39.375 (New school record)
Vault: Moravansky 9.825
Bars: Rondeau 9.875
Beam: Murphy, Rondeau 9.950
Floor: Ludwig, Murphy 9.925
Live blog by Kalley Leer
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