Michigan State University Student Radio

Impact 89FM | WDBM-FM

Michigan State University Student Radio

Impact 89FM | WDBM-FM

Michigan State University Student Radio

Impact 89FM | WDBM-FM

Perfect score from Nikki Smith leads MSU to victory over Iowa

MSU Head Coach Mike Rowe (striped shirt) celebrates with his team after sophomore Nikki Smith (right of Rowe) scored a perfect 10 on the floor for the Spartans in a victory over Iowa on Sunday, Jan. 28, 2024 at Jenison Field House.

EAST LANSING –  No. 14 Michigan State gymnastics took on No. 20 Iowa in the first home meet of the season. Jenison Field House was packed on Sunday as the team and fans celebrated the Spartans’ Alumni Day as well as the 50th Anniversary of MSU gymnastics. 

MSU entered the meet undefeated in the Big Ten conference, coming off of a big win against Penn State last weekend. The Spartans kept that energy alive against Iowa, winning 197.400 – 195.700 overall. 

“Lineups by no means are solidified, and I think that’s keeping these kids driving to work hard in the gym everyday,” said head coach Mike Rowe. 

The highlight of the day happened on the Spartans’ last event of the meet: the floor. The crowd at Jenison was electric as sophomore Nikki Smith scored a perfect 10 with her performance on the floor. 

Junior Skyla Schulte and senior Delanie Harkness also helped the team on the floor, both earning scores of 9.950. 

“Floor did what they’re supposed to do today, but there is still a lot of work we can do,” Rowe said. 

MSU started off strong on the vault, with junior Gabrielle Stephen earning the highest score of the day on this event with a 9.925. Stephen came in second all-around, with a score of 39.350.

On the bars, Schulte and Harkness had dominant performances for MSU, both scoring a 9.900, the highest bars score of the meet. Schulte continued her strong performance on the beam, once again earning the event’s high score with a 9.900. Schulte ended the meet with the all-around high score of 39.600.

Overall, the Spartans placed first in every event, with scores of 49.375 on vault, 49.300 on bars, 49.100 on beam, and 49.625 on floor.  

“They kept the energy up, they kept the dynamics,” Rowe said about the team’s performance. 

MSU is now 5-3 (2-0 B1G) as they move on to face the Michigan Wolverines for another Big Ten matchup next Sunday, Feb. 4. 

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