Bobcats beat Cougars by 140+ points, go undefeated at home in 2023


Amanda Geraci

Quinnipiac acrobatics and tumbling completes the regular season with a 5-1 record.

Jennifer Moglia, Staff Writer

HAMDEN, Conn. — Quinnipiac acrobatics and tumbling secured a decisive victory over the Caldwell Cougars Friday night, winning 281.820-133.625. With the win, the Bobcats complete the regular season undefeated on home turf.

The 281.820 mark was Quinnipiac’s highest of the season, notching season-best marks in the compulsory, toss, tumble and team events.

Tonight also marked the first time this season that one of Quinnipiac’s opponents did not participate in the team event, hence the large gap between the two teams’ scores. The Cougars officially finished their first season with an acrobatics and tumbling program tonight as well, receiving rousing applause and cheers from the crowd.

The Bobcats’ story this season has been one of respecting the past, seizing the present and looking ahead to the future with confidence. Tonight’s meet was a perfect end to that story.

From the first event, it was obvious that the Bobcats were on another level. They had been performing well throughout the entire season, but this was different.

It may have been easy for them to perform well against a much more inexperienced team, but head coach Mary Ann Powers preaches never playing down to teams.

“They play up, and I love that,” Powers said. “When we went down to Baylor, they didn’t back down, and that was their hardest competition this year … they weren’t afraid of it.”

If it wasn’t obvious that the Bobcats were not playing down to their opponent’s level from watching them on the mat, the scores definitely communicated that message. Their lowest score of the night was a 9.00 and their highest was a 9.90, as opposed to Caldwell’s high of 8.90 and low of 2.00. 

Caldwell’s head coach Jenna Adams couldn’t have been more excited to show her old stomping grounds to her new team. Adams competed for Quinnipiac’s acro team from 2014 to 2018 and was named ECAC Player of the Year and team captain in her senior year.

“This was a really great atmosphere for my kids to be in and experience and to see what years and years of hard work and building a program can look like,” Adams said. “I was really excited to bring them here … I think they learned a lot from watching (Quinnipiac).”

At the end of the meet, the Bobcats’ head coach Mary Ann Powers couldn’t wait to run up to her and embrace her.

“I congratulated her, and I said that I was their good luck charm today,” Adams joked. “(Powers) wants to steal me to bring me to nationals, but they’re going to be just fine.”

 Powers praised Adams for her coaching ability. 

“She’s going places,” Powers said about her former player. “I couldn’t be more proud of her. She has a very, very strong sense of the sport and a keen attention to detail.”

Powers has emphasized throughout the season that acro is one of the few sports where your focus is on your own team’s performance, given that you can’t control what the other team is doing.

“They can’t guard anybody, they can’t defend anybody, they just have to  … get it done,” Powers said. 

The Bobcats have embraced this mindset and have gotten better each meet, whether the scoreboard showed it or not.

“We’re scoring against ourselves right now,” Powers said. “This score today was reflective of what this team needed to do, not what (Caldwell) could do, they’re brand new … (The Bobcats) needed to know that they’re a 281 team, not (a) 265 team, and they are.”

Having this last victory on the schedule isn’t where the battle ends for the Bobcats. They’ll look ahead to the NCATA National Championships, which will take place at West Liberty University from April 27-29.

For graduating players like graduate student base Bella Pierce, this could be the last chance to try to bring some championship gold back to Hamden.

“Going into nationals, it’s a big deal,” Pierce said. “We have to make sure we’re still fighting every time and making every single correction and really working hard.”

Powers shared that the team has been feeling inspired by the men’s hockey team’s NCAA Championship win and that she even sees some of that same amazing brotherhood in her players’ sisterhood.

“Our hockey team … you never see them backing down, I feel like they’re relentless,” Powers said. “The adjectives that team throws around, this team is the same way.”

As of April 12, the Bobcats are ranked at No. 4 in the NCATA’s championship rankings. The 2023 championship bracket will be released this Monday, April 17, with the top eight teams qualifying for the postseason.