The Michigan State Spartans gymnastics program made the difficult decision to end its 2021 season due to COVID-19 health and safety concerns. The program was forced to shut down and quarantine multiple times due to the virus, and has not had adequate time to train for competition.
“It’s an extremely unfortunate situation, but due to the multiple quarantines and shut downs creating missed training time, out of concern for the health and safety of the gymnasts and their ability to safely compete, we decided this was in the best interest of our student-athletes,” MSU Director of Athletics Bill Beekman said in a statement. “I’d like to thank Coach Mike Rowe and his team for all their efforts this season. Our student-athletes have shown relentless resiliency and grit, and I know they’ll be back stronger and better than ever.”
The Michigan State gymnastics team was only able to compete in two tri-meets this season before pausing activities due to positive COVID-19 cases within the program. The Spartans won a Jan. 30 tri-meet against Ohio State and Nebraska with a score of 195.775 at Jenison Field House. Baleigh Garcia won Freshman of the Week honors for her performance in the opener. MSU was then defeated in a tri-meet on Feb. 7 in Columbus against Ohio State and Illinois, finishing third with a score of 194.500. The team has not competed against other programs since then.
“I commend our team that they kept trying to finish the season, but ultimately, this is the right decision, based on the extreme difficulty of having enough training time to safely get ready for competition,” MSU gymnastics head coach Mike Rowe said. “I would like to thank our medical staff, Dr. Sally Nogle and Destiny Teachnor-Hauk, for their never-ending hard work, as well as Bill Beekman and Jennifer Smith for their understanding and support during these difficult times.”