SAN JOSE, Calif. – Sophomore Veronica Porte had a career night as the San Jose State University gymnastics team took second place at its home “Pretty In Pink” meet on Friday, February 23. Porte set career-bests on the vault, on the beam and on the floor. Her efforts helped the Spartans to record a team score of 193.050. Taking first place in the meet were the Hornets of Sacramento State with a score of 193.700, and taking third was UC Davis with a score of 191.450.
Porte set a career-best 9.90 on the floor, finishing tied for first place in the event. Her score goes into the Spartan record book as the 12th-best floor score in program history. The reining Western Athletic Conference Gymnast of the Week also posted a career-best on the balance beam with a score of 9.825. This score earned her first place in the event. Her final career-best of the day came on the vault where she recorded a score of 9.775 and took third place.
Also recording career-highs on the day were Alise Blackwell and Gabby Targosz. Blackwell set a personal-best of 9.850 on the floor. This is 0.50 points better than her previous season-best so far this year and 0.25 better than her previous career record set last season at Sacramento State. Targosz posted her career-best on the floor with a score of 9.700.
The Spartans also tied some career and season-bests on the night. Blackwell tied her season-best score of 9.750 on the uneven bars, good for second place in the event. Michelle Minotti also tied a season-best on Friday with a 9.750 on the vault. This earned her fifth place in the event. Freshman Jessica Khoshnood tied a career-best on the night with a 9.725 on the balance beam.
The Spartans began the meet on the vault. They finished with a team score of 48.400, the third-highest vault score of the season. Along with Porte and Minotti’s scores, Tiffany Louie posted a 9.575, Dani Johnson a 9.625, Blackwell a 9.475 and Raylyn Cardeno with a 9.675. From there, the team moved onto the uneven bars. San Jose State recorded a score of 47.575 in the event. Blackwell’s score was the highest for the team. Following behind her were Khoshnood with a 9.650, Liz Major with a 9.625, Jennifer Pizanno with a 9.525, Louie with a 9.025 and Porte with an 8.975 following a fall.
“I thought we did well considering we had some falls,” said head coach Wayne Wright. “I know that whenever we go against Sacramento State especially, and Davis is a strong team as well, you can’t have any mistakes. If either team has any mistakes it’ll open up the door and we kind of had a few mistakes on bars and it opened up the door.”
The team’s third event of the night was the balance beam. The Spartans posted a team score of 48.400 in the event. Porte and Khoshnood had the first and third best scores of the team, respectively. Leah Bigelow had the team’s second-best score, and the third-best score of the event, with a 9.775. Also competing for the Spartans on the beam were Kelli Fournier with a 9.550, Greta Leach with a 9.525 and Minotti with a 9.275 following a fall from the apparatus.
The final event of the night for the Spartans was the floor. Porte and Blackwell had the team’s highest scores in the event, but also doing well were Targosz with a 9.700, Cardeno with a 9.625, Louie with a 9.600 and Khoshnood with a 9.075.
The Spartans will be back in action again on their home mats on Friday, March 2, against Cal State Fullerton. The meet is slated for 7:00 p.m. in the Spartan Gym.