DAVIS, Calif. — The Sacramento State gymnastics team saved its best for the final meet of the season, scoring a season high 195.650 to win the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Championship on Saturday night at UC Davis.
Along with the team championship, the Hornets also had four individuals win titles. Kalliah McCartney finished first on vault with a school record tying 9.950. Elideth Guerrero scored a career high 9.900 to finish first on beam and Kailey Hansen won floor with a 9.875. Freshman Jesse Williams was also victorious in the all-around with a career best 39.250.
The total team score was the third highest in school history and provided the team with its fourth MPSF championship in its last five tries.
"We hit the first meet of the year and we hit the last meet of the year," Sacramento State head coach Kim Hughes said. "It shows we've been a little inconsistent. But we train to peak at this championship. I'm proud of the team for pulling it together in the meet that counts and I couldn't be happier."
After a bye in the opening round, the Hornets began their competition on floor with a 48.925. The team had three scores of at least 9.800 beginning with Williams who was third in the lineup. McCartney followed with a 9.850 before Hansen capped the trio. Dallas Smith finished the rotation with a 9.750. Hansen and McCartney finished 1-2 on the event while Williams tied for sixth and Smith tied for 11th.
Sacramento State separated from the field with a school record setting performance on vault. The team totaled 49.150 to break the previous mark of 49.075 which came against Central Michigan, Seattle Pacific and UC Davis on March 10, 2012. McCartney anchored the lineup by tying the Hornet record which was held by Rebecca Seebirt since 1997. The score also set the MPSF Championship record for the event and was the highest on any event since former Hornet Stefanie Aeder scored 9.950 on floor in 2005. Hansen tied for second with a career-high tying 9.875 and Williams tied for fifth with a career best 9.850.
Following a second bye, the Hornets were able to maintain its lead after scoring 48.525 on bars. Brennan Bailes began the lineup with a career high 9.800 and Williams later matched the score to lead the team. The pair were part of a four-way tie for second place.
With UC Davis already done, Sacramento State knew the score it needed on beam to win the team title. The team responded by having all six gymnasts hit en route to a 49.050 which tied the season best and the sixth highest score in Hornet history. Kayla Wonderly and Cassie Benning began with 9.725s before Williams scored 9.800. Guerrero, who had not solidified her spot in the lineup until late in the week, was nearly flawless in her routine to help her win for the first time since her freshman season. McCartney and Hansen secured the win the scores of 9.800 and 9.825, respectively.
"Eli was not hitting this week and she fell the last two meets so she was not a lock until the last minute," Hughes said. "She nailed it and it was a senior moment that she will never forget."
Williams claimed her first all-around title edging San Jose State's Cassandra Harrison by .125 Following the meet, the redshirt freshman was named the MPSF Newcomer of the Year.
1. Sacramento State 195.650
2. UC Davis 194.875
3. San Jose State 194.550
4. Seattle Pacific 194.075
5. Air Force 193.650
6. Alaska Anchorage 192.200
1. Kalliah McCartney, SAC, 9.950; T2. Kailey Hansen 9.875; T5. Jesse Williams 9.850; T8. Katie Osaki 9.800; T22. Tina Necas 9.675; 31. Julia Konner 9.575.
1. Kala DeFrancesco, UCD, 9.825; T2. Brennan Bailes, Jesse Williams 9.800; T10. Paige Bottano 9.725; T22. Ashley Wooff 9.650; 28. Kaila Kilwein 9.550; 34. Kalliah McCartney 9.050.
1. Elideth Guerrero, SAC, 9.900; T2. Kailey Hansen 9.825; T4. Kalliah McCartney, Jesse Williams 9.800; T14. Cassie Benning, Kayla Wonderly 9.725.
1. Kailey Hansen, SAC, 9.875; T2. Kalliah McCartney 9.850; T6. Jesse Wiliams 9.800; T11. Dallas Smith 9.750; T25. Maddie Montoya 9.650; T32. Katie Osaki 9.500.