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    Third Time's A Charm For Women's Gymnastics At Midwest Independent Championships
     

     
    Alyson Cacciatore won the Midwest Independent Conference All-Around title on Saturday with a 39.300.
     
    Alyson Cacciatore won the Midwest Independent Conference All-Around title on Saturday with a 39.300.
     
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    March 20, 2004

    Normal, Ill.- The University of Illinois at Chicago women's gymnastics team gave UIC gymnastics a one-two sweep of conference championships this season, successfully defending their Midwest Independent Conference Championship with a 194.200 team tally to win the 2004 team title on Saturday at Redbird Arena.

    Saturday's conference championship win was the third in a row for the Flames (11-13, 7-0 Midwest Independent), who completed an undefeated conference season and now await the results of Illinois' Big Ten Championship meet to learn their NCAA postseason fate.

    The Flames were led by Alyson Cacciatore, who won the Midwest Independent all-around crown with a 39.300.

    Following UIC was Southeast Missouri State with a 193.750, while Centenary took third with a 193.600. Illinois State finished fourth with a 192.825 in front of their home crowd, while Texas Women's University capped off the field with a fifth-place score of 190.125.

    Cacciatore was at her best on Saturday, leading the Flames in three of four events to win the vault and uneven bars titles while placing third on balance beam. The junior won vault with a 9.825 while putting up a season-high 9.925 on uneven bars.

    Cacciatore tied Southeast Missouri State's Katie Bloom and Ashley Godwin for third place on beam, with all three posting a 9.800.

    Jennifer O'Neil was sharp as well, tying for second on floor exercise with a career-high 9.875. Veronique Meunier and Jackie Jaworowicz followed O'Neil in the event with a 9.825 and a 9.800, respectively.

    O'Neil's uneven bars score of 9.875 marked a 2004 best.

    The Flames turned in a season-high team score on bars, an event that gave UIC trouble early in the season, with a 49.200.

    UIC hopes to make their fifth NCAA South Central Regional appearance in the last six years.