MUNCIE, Ind. -- Ball State gymnast Tia Kiaku
is headed to the NCAA Regionals. The freshman earned an individual bid to compete in the floor exercise at the April 7 Columbus Regional hosted by Ohio State, as announced Monday.
Additionally, Ball State's Bri Slonim
qualified as an alternate on the vault. She would also compete at the Columbus site.
All regionals will be conducted Saturday, April 7. The Columbus Regional will begin at 6 p.m. at Ohio State's St. John Arena.
Kiaku, from Apex, North Carolina, posted scores of 9.8 or better on the floor in nine of Ball State's 12 meets this season. She recorded a season-best 9.9 on two occasions – Feb. 25 at Northern Illinois and March 10 at Western Michigan. After a third-place finish at the MAC Championships, Kiaku had a regional qualifying score (RQS) of 9.875.
Slonim, a sophomore from Verona, Wisconsin, scored 9.8 or higher on vault in seven of Ball State's final nine meets this season. She managed a career-best score of 9.875 in the Jan. 28 meet against Kent State. Slonim had an RQS of 9.815.
Six teams, four all-around competitors (who are not on a qualifying team) and two individual event specialists per event were named to each of the six regional sites.
The top two teams and the top two all-around competitors (who are not on an advancing team) from each regional will receive an automatic berth to the national championships in St. Louis, Missouri, April 20-21, hosted by the University of Missouri and the St. Louis Sports Commission.
For tickets and information regarding the National Collegiate Women's Gymnastics Championships, log on to the NCAA ticket portal
Columbus Regional (Central) (Ohio State University, host) – April 7 (6 p.m.)
3. Boise St.
4. Ohio St.
6. Kent St.
1. Jovannah East, Bowling Green
2. Lea Mitchell, Michigan St.
3. Emili Dobronics, Eastern Mich.
4. Morgan Spence, Western Mich.
Alt. – Rachael Underwood, Western Mich.
Individual Event Specialists
Vault – Rachael Underwood, Western Mich.
Vault – Lauren DeMeno, Bowling Green
Alt. – Bri Slonim, Ball St.
Uneven Bars – Hailee Westney, Michigan St.
Uneven Bars – Kendall Valentin, Eastern Mich.
Alt. – Lacey Rubin, Eastern Mich.
Balance Beam – Laura Mitchell, Bowling Green
Balance Beam – India McPeak, Bowling Green
Alt. – Kendall Valentin, Eastern Mich.
Floor Exercise – Rachael Underwood, Western Mich.
Floor Exercise – Tia Kiaku, Ball St.
Alt. – Kayla Rose, Bowling Green