Now in her third year at Oregon State University, Mel made it to the floor final (her first ever apparatus final at a collegiate nationals) in front of a parochial Georgia crowd. She displayed a stunning routine which you can watch below, scoring a 9.925 for equal 4th place. The amazing thing is, verdict among fans and spectators was that not only was it a great routine, it deserved first place! It's not every day you have an overseas audience clamouring for one of your own. Buuuuuuuut you can't fight the system, and she got a nifty trophy out of it anyway (not to mention the acclaim of the crowd).
"Mel did a fabulous job, I'm really proud of her," head coach Tanya Chaplin said. "She's done a wonderful job for us this season and put in a lot of hard work and it is great to see that pay dividends today."