March 17, 2012
The University of Minnesota women’s gymnastics team put together a true team effort Saturday night in Denver, Colo. as they tallied a 196.225 without claiming one individual crown. The Golden Gophers score was enough to trump host No. 17 Denver, No. 25 Arizona State and Iowa for the overall team victory.
As Minnesota entered the final rotation, they were down to Denver by .025, but thanks to a season-best vault set, the Gophers pulled out the narrow victory. The Maroon and Gold had five gymnasts score a 9.825 or over to help clinch the title.
The Gophers started off the quad meet hot by tallying their best bars score of the season. Janell Campbell, Lucy Ennis and Cierra Tomson guided the team on the apparatus with each scoring a 9.850. The impressive mark was enough for the trio to share fourth place.
Shannon Golich led the team in the next rotation, which was beam. Golich garnered second place with a 9.850 while the Amber Hammerschmidt and Dusti Russell posted a 9.800, respectively. All together, the team notched a 48.850, giving them a score of 97.925 at the halfway point. The Gophers score on beam tied with Arizona State for the top team score.
For the third rotation, Minnesota headed to its strongest event in the floor exercise. The Gophers didn’t disappoint as they had five gymnasts score a 9.800 or better. Tomson was the top scorer on the team as she tied for fourth with a 9.825. Campbell, Golich, Kylie Schermann and Kayla Slechta each tallied a 9.800 to help the Gophers post the second-best team score on floor of the night.
Everything came down to the final rotation as Minnesota trailed Denver by .025 at the turn, but the Gophers tallied a season-best score of 49.275 to claim victory. Slechta and Ennis provided the spark as they each earned a 9.875 to tie for second. All in all, five Gopher gymnasts scored a 9.825 or better.
Tomson was the lone all around for Minnesota as she claimed third with a career-high score of 39.250.
The Gophers now turn all their attention to the Big Ten Championships next weekend in Iowa City, Iowa. The conference meet is slated to have two different four-team sessions next Saturday.