Freshman sticking it in competition
Published: Tuesday, January 28, 2014
Updated: Tuesday, January 28, 2014 00:01
Utah State gymnastics is experiencing its best season start since 1999. At 3-1 on the season, the Aggies have wins over in-state rivals Southern Utah and BYU and a perfect 1-0 home record.
The Aggies made many changes and additions to the roster and coaching staff this season, including hiring a new head coach, Nadalie Walsh. But one of the most notable additions four meets in is that of freshman Bailey McIntire.
McIntire has competed as an all-around gymnast for USU in all four meets of the season, placing second in her collegiate debut vs Iowa. McIntire secured first place and achieved a career-high score of 38.800 in the all-around competition in Cedar City during the USU win over SUU. She also placed second in the home meet against BYU and notched a sixth-place finish at the quad-meet at UC Davis.
“I feel like Bailey is just going to continue to be solid and not only is she going to get recognition for herself, but I think she will get recognition for the program. She’s going to bring more people to watch,” Walsh said. “In her floor routine, when she throws out the fish hook and rolls it in, they’re going to hope that she is pointing at them.”
McIntire has performed well in all of her events, but especially in her floor routine.
“When you put Bailey out there on floor, you don’t have a doubt in your bones that she is going to make her routine,” Walsh said.
“I just absolutely love doing my floor routine,” McIntire said, “It’s not really like, ‘Oh, I’m nervous to go do my floor routine,’ it’s just I want to go out there and do what I know how to do. I love interacting with the crowd.”
McIntire was recruited to the USU gymnastics team from Kearney, Mont., where she competed at Edge Gymnastics under Laura Habel and former Aggie assistant coach Janet Anso. Current Aggies Paige Jones and Kristen Meyers also competed at Edge Gymnastics.
Graduating first in her class from Kearny High School gave McIntire options when it came to choosing a college, but when she came to visit USU, she said it was the beautiful campus and family environment with the team that led to her decision to become an Aggie.
“It was really easy to come into this team because they are all super-welcoming and we’re like a big family, and everyone gets excited for each other,” she said. “No matter if you’re doing four events or one event, we’re all just as excited for each other. It’s just a lot of fun to be with them.”
McIntire started her gymnastics career in a “mommy and me” class when she was two years old and has competed ever since. Her parents are very supportive of anything she does in her life.
“They support me in everything I do. Whether it had been a long time ago when I wanted to quit, they would have said, ‘OK, that’s fine,’” McIntire said. “But now that I’m in it a long time, they support me and they’re coming to a lot of meets, and it’s awesome.”
McIntire said her current gymnastics goal is to be able to compete all-around for all four years of her collegiate career.
“I wanted to go somewhere where I could potentially compete all four events, so I knew that it could be a possibility here,” she said.
McIntire said her favorite part of being a gymnast is performing.
“I love performing in front of people. Having an audience just gets me excited and gets me going,” she said.