WOODLAND, Calif. – Air Force gymnasts Casey Bell, Analise Howard and Anna Salamone were recognized by the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation this afternoon (Jan. 10), as the league announced its first weekly awards of the 2017 season. Bell was named the MPSF Gymnast of the Week, while Howard was selected as Specialist of the Week and Salamone was named the Freshman of the Week.
All three of the Falcons’ award winners captured event titles during Air Force’s season-opening meet.
Bell had a stellar start to the 2017 campaign, registering a career-high 9.825 to win the floor exercise. The junior, who paced the Falcons to a one-two finish on that event in the individual standings, also recorded a fourth-place finish on the vault (9.475) and placed within the top half of the field in her first collegiate appearance on the uneven bars (sixth, 9.350).
After missing last season with an injury, Howard registered a 9.775 to win the uneven bars in her collegiate debut and pace the Falcons to a 1-2-3 sweep of the top spots on that event. The sophomore also finished within the top half of the field on the balance beam, as she took sixth with a score of 9.450.
Salamone, competing in her first collegiate meet, garnered a score of 9.750 to capture the vault title and lead Air Force to a sweep of the top-three places on the podium in that event. In addition to her win, the freshman added a top-five finish on the uneven bars (fifth, 9.475).
The trio, which led Air Force to a 190.875-184.750 over Winona State on Jan. 7, helped the Falcons produce their highest season-opening score since 2013 and their first victory in a season-opener since 2014.