NORMAL, Ill. — Texas Woman’s University assistant gymnastics coaches Kristen Harold and Stephen Hood were honored by the Midwest Independent Conference as its assistant Coaches of the Year, the league announced recently.
“This is an incredible, well-deserved honor for Stephen and Kristen, and for our program,” coach Lisa Bowerman said. “These individuals truly dedicate themselves fully every day to our student-athletes and to ensuring their growth and success in all areas of life. Stephen and Kristen are two amazing individuals and I am thankful every day that they have chosen to be Pioneers.”
Hood has primary responsibility for the vault while sharing responsibilities of coaching the uneven bars. The vault was one of TWU’s strongest events this season as the Pioneers averaged 48.585 through 10 meets, ranking 50th nationally and second in the MIC in the event, with a season-best 48.850 in TWU’s meet against Air Force.
Hood’s vault unit posted a season-best 48.800 in the dual against Oklahoma, with both Daisy Woodring (9.850) and Beth Lazarus (9.800) clearing the 9.800 threshold. In addition to his coaching responsibilities on both vault and bars, Hood serves as the team’s recruiting coordinator, as well as the team’s academic coordinator, conducting weekly academic meetings with the team’s freshmen, which contributed to a team and program record GPA in the fall of 3.867.
Harold’s coaching responsibilities include overseeing the uneven bars with Hood, as well having primary responsibility for TWU’s floor exercises, an event in which the Pioneers averaged 48.670 per event with a national ranking of 46th and first in the MIC.
Bria Northrop (9.835) and Isabel Goyco (9.825) are TWU’s leaders in the event, with Goyco hitting a 9.900 on the floor twice this season, and leading the MIC in Individual standings. Northrop has also hit a 9.9 two times this season on the Floor. The Pioneers’ strongest floor performance of the season came in a dual against Oklahoma (49.150), where Goyco’s 9.900 was good for second in the event, while Northrop hit a 9.875 to tie for third.
Both Mackenzie Kunzman (9.850) and Domi Bonzagni posted scores of 9.800 or higher in the event. TWU has twice scored 49.000 or higher on the floor. In addition to her day-to-day coaching responsibilities, Harold creates the floor music and choreography for each team member. Harold also oversees all of the team’s in-gym conditioning and swim workouts.