State of Illinois Falls in Inaugural Illinois/Michigan Meet
Samantha King placed first on the balance beam with a 9.875.

Samantha King placed first on the balance beam with a 9.875.

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Feb. 2, 2013

CHICAGO, Ill. - The Illinois State gymnastics team took second at the inaugural Illinois vs. Michigan meet Saturday night inside the Physical Education Building at Illinois-Chicago. The state of Michigan posted a victory over the state of Illinois, 388.725-386.900.

Central Michigan led the meet with a 195.875, followed by Illinois State with a score of 194.100. Eastern Michigan and UIC earned third and fourth place respectively, with scores of 192.850-192.800.

Head coach Bob Conkling is excited about the team's progress and high scores.

"I'm really happy with how the team performed tonight," Conkling said. "There were a lot of personal bests. Sami King hit a new career-high all-around score and Elise Gray had a beautiful vault, posting a career-high too."

Junior Elise Gray scored a career-high 9.925 on the vault placing first. Kim Genereux took second place on the uneven bars with a 9.825. Sami King scored a 9.875 on the balance beam, placing second. King also finished the meet with a new career-high all-around score of 39.225.

The Illinois State gymnastics team was strong on the vault, with all five scores being above a 9.700. The Redbirds also broke a team record, scoring a team score of 49.15 on the vault.

Balance beam was an event that the gymnasts were working hard to improve for this meet. Last meet the Redbirds scored a team score of 47.425 on the beam and this meet they scored a team score of 48.075, improving more than half of a point.

"The gymnasts also improved tremendously on the balance beam," Conkling said. "We still counted a fall, but did so much better."

The Redbirds will travel to Chicago, Ill. next weekend as well to compete at the Navy Pier Chicago Style gymnastics meet starting at 7:30 p.m. It is the largest women's gymnastics competition in the world.

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