Despite having fewer than 48 hours of rest before Sunday’s George Washington Quad Meet, Maryland gymnastics sophomore Kirsten Peterman posted two career highs in the team’s second-place finish in Washington, D.C.
Two days earlier, the Terps beat Penn and Yale at Xfinity Center. The two-meet weekend was by far the quickest turnaround of Maryland’s season to this point, and though the Terps said they felt the effects of the compressed schedule, Peterman and many of her teammates scored significantly higher Sunday than Friday.
“It’s an unbelievable feeling. It’s not anything that I was expecting going in,” Peterman said. “I was just going in with the intent to do the best job I can, to focus all of the little details. To come out with a career high is just icing on the cake.”
Freshman Audrey Barber said the team was tired, but the Terps changed their mindset during warmups.
“It’s tough, both physically and mentally,” coach Brett Nelligan said. “The meets are obviously physically demanding, and it costs them something as well.”
Still, the team’s mentality seemed to work for Peterman. On bars, she posted the first 9.9 of her career on any event, en route to a personal-best 39.175 all-around mark.
Over her last seven meets, Peterman hasn’t scored lower than 9.825 on bars.
“It’s always about what I can do for the team,” Peterman said. “You can’t control what the judges score. You can only control what you do in that event.”
As Peterman has improved her bars production, her all-around score has increased as well. After falling short of 39 in each the team’s first three meets, the sophomore has surpassed that threshold in six of its last seven.
Peterman continued to encourage her teammates to perform the best, no matter the circumstances, so their hard work won’t go to waste.
“We are going out there with the intent to do our best every single time,” Peterman said. “Regardless of how we’re feeling.”
Nelligan said he was proud of Peterman’s consistent performance, which served as a catalyst for the team to bounce back from disappointing scores in the previous two meets. The Terps’ score of 195.825 on Sunday was tied for their second-highest of the season.
“Each person on the team is a leader and we expect them to act like leaders,” Nelligan said. “This meet was a good example of that because it was a full team effort.”