The second Beauty and the Beast event was a spectacle. Maryland's gymnasts and wrestlers walked between two smoke machines and into the spotlight. It was all captured on the Xfinity Center's jumbotron.
Check out highlight's from today's Beauty and the Beast! GymTerps are back home Friday vs #9 Arkansas at 7:30 PM! https://t.co/89WFSpPD99— Maryland Gymnastics (@TerpsGymnastics) February 15, 2016
After throwing tee-shirts into the crowd, the gymnasts and wrestlers split off, with the wrestlers staying on the wrestling mat and the gymnasts heading towards the Maryland flag that adorned the student section.
Maryland wrestling, after losing their Big Ten season finale to Wisconsin just an hour before, took on crosstown foe George Mason. The GymTerps hosted Rutgers.
Maryland wrestling easily defeated the Patriots, but gymnastics fell to the Scarlet Knights.
Here's a quick breakdown of each team's performance and some things we learned from the Beauty and the Beast.
After losing to George Mason by criteria in last year's season opener, Maryland corrected that mistake by pounding the Patriots, 31-9. The Terrapins won eight straight matches, racking up 31 unanswered points. Mark Collabucci and Garrett Wesneski picked up tech-falls while Michael Beck picked up a pin. It was a feel-good win, but it held little meaning. Maryland (5-12, 1-8) is supposed to beat George Mason like this every single year.
Three things that we learned from the Maryland-George Mason dual:
1) Maryland is a better and deeper team than they were last year
In last season's loss, Kerry McCoy sent out backups in the first four matches. This season, Maryland's backups have fared relatively well. We have seen a lot of different wrestlers share time at various weights this season.
2) Geoffrey Alexander is getting healthier
After upsetting No. 7 Ryan Taylor of Wisconsin, I expected Alexander to sit against George Mason. Instead, he came out and won an 11-8 decision. He is getting to the point where he'll be able to train harder as he focuses on his goal of becoming an All-American.
3) 141 pounds is still up in the air
Alfred Bannister got a win against Michigan. Billy Rappo got a win against Wisconsin. After Rappo wrestled in the first dual of the day, Bannister got the start against George Mason. With only one dual meet left and three weeks until Big Tens, head coach Kerry McCoy has a very difficult decision to make.
Maryland 31, George Mason 9: Courtesy of Maryland Athletics
149: Blake Roulo (GMU) DQ over Ryan Diehl (MD), (0-6)
157: Lou Mascola (MD) decision over Greg Flournoy (GMU), 3-1 (3-6)
165: Brendan Burnham (MD) decision over Patrick Davis (GMU), 8-4 (6-6)
174: Josh Snook (MD) decision over Daniel Mika (GMU), 3-1 SV-1 (9-6)
184: Mark Colabucci (MD) technical fall over Austin Harrison (GMU), 17-2 (14-6)
197: Garrett Wesneski (MD) technical fall over Cameron Houston (GMU), 15-0 (19-6)
285: Dawson Peck (MD) decision over Matthew Voss (GMU), 7-5 (SV-1) (22-6)
125: Michael Beck (MD) fall over Bill Prochniewski (GMU), 6:47 (28-6)
133: No. 16 Geoffrey Alexander (MD) decision over Ryan Renkey (GMU), 11-8 (31-6)
141: Tejon Anthony (GMU) decision over Alfred Bannister (MD), 2-1 (31-9)
The GymTerps made a slew of errors and mental mistakes earlier in the week in Ann Arbor. They beat themselves and didn't give themselves a chance to win.
Through the first two rotations, it looked like Maryland was prepared to put those mistakes behind them. However, they fell apart down the stretch and gave the lead--and the win--to the visiting Scarlet Knights.
Rutgers is not a very good team and I think that Maryland normally beats them eight or nine times out of ten. But as they say, "That's why they play the games."
Here are three things that we learned from the Maryland-Rutgers meet:
1) There's still no sign of Agaran
Shynelle Agaran had a concussion earlier in the season. She's one of the most talented gymnasts on the squad and she's only a freshman. If she can come back healthy, this team will benefit in a big way.
2) The beam came back to bite Maryland
The GymTerps have traditionally struggled on the balance beam and it hurt them again on Sunday afternoon. Maryland had a 97.600-97.450 lead after two rotations. After the Terps were done with the beam, they trailed 146.075-145.475.
Kathy Tang had a 9.150, Abbie Epperson had a 9.200 and Megan McClelland had a 9.475.
The Terps had no margin for error and they failed to execute in a pressure situation.
3) Maryland is going to be consistently inconsistent as freshmen grow and mature
Maryland has taken some steps backwards since their season-high of 195.500 against Iowa on January 31st. A score of 194.425 isn't a bad score. It's a decent score. Not a very good score; a decent score. This is a very talented team, but they're young and they're raw. One of the problems that you see with freshmen is that you never know what to expect from week to week with them. That's why we're seeing this kind of inconsistency from the GymTerps.