Floor routines a strength for gymnastics team

Temple tied the program’s second-best floor score on Feb. 11.

Freshman all-around Tori Edwards performs her floor exercise routine on Feb. 11 at The Palestra. | ZIQI HUANG / THE TEMPLE NEWS

The Owls have earned their highest scores on the floor at every meet.

They achieved a season-high 49.05 on the floor in their quad meet against Penn, the University of Bridgeport and Ursinus College on Feb. 11 in University City.

The performance tied the second-best floor mark in program history, which was originally set at the Eastern College Athletic Conference Championship in 2011.

The Owls (15-3) followed it up with a 48.925 on the floor at Saturday’s Ken Anderson Invitational at McGonigle Hall. Temple beat West Chester University, Bridgeport and Ursinus.

“The addition, with the freshmen in the lineup this season, definitely changed our scoring potential,” coach Umme Salim-Beasley said. “To have that, really changed the dynamics of what we could potentially score this year.”

Freshman all-arounds Monica Servidio and Madison Rennix each scored 9.8 on Feb. 11. Freshman all-around Tori Edwards, who came to Temple as a walk-on, scored a career-high 9.85 on the floor at that meet.

After she set a new career-high with a 9.875 at the Ken Anderson Invitational on Saturday, Edwards said she still feels she has room for improvement.

“We knew she had the capability in every event,” said assistant coach Michael Rosso, who specializes in coaching the floor exercise. “In the past, she has been able to compete well or put a great meet out at one time. This year, she really has been able to do that. Each and every week, she’s improving her floor.”

Edwards is still working to perfect her routine, particularly focusing on landings.

Sophomore all-around Jaylene Everett has also been one of the Owls’ top floor performers. Everett registered a career-best score of 9.875 on the floor at a quad meet against host University of Pittsburgh, Towson University and North Carolina State University on Feb. 3.

Everett appeared in the floor event in every meet during her freshman season.

“Every single meet, I knew I could count on her to bring in a good score,” Rosso said. “She’s doing the exact same thing this year.”

Rosso called the combination of Edwards and Everett a “one-two punch.” Salim-Beasley agreed.

“Jaylene and Tori are really show stoppers,” Salim-Beasley said. “To have them as the anchors of our lineup really does strengthen the entire floor lineup because they’re capable of scoring high nines and above.”

The season is now more than halfway over, as five meets remain until the ECAC Championships from March 23-25 at The Palestra. The Owls average floor score of 48.829 this season is more than 0.6 points higher than their mark at last year’s ECAC Championships.

“[The floor] has been consistent,” Salim-Beasley said. “We’ve been pleased with that. And even with that consistency, we still know that we have little places where we could improve.”

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