Minnesota Returns Home to Face Utah
Minnesota will return to the friendly confines of the Sports Pavilion this weekend, but will face tough competition in No. 3 Utah. The meet is scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. at the Sports Pavilion. Live scoring will be available on www.gophersports.com.
Big Ten Banner Unveiling
The Gophers will celebrate their 2006 Big Ten title by unveiling the championship banner in the Sports Pavilion on Jan. 27 during the competition against Utah. The team and staff were presented with Big Ten Championship rings at the Gopher football game against Michigan on Sept. 30.
The Minnesota gymnastics program is hosting an alumnae reunion, which coincides with the Big Ten Championship banner unveiling on Jan. 27. Former Gopher gymnasts will be on hand to sign autographs along with the current team members after the competition against Utah. A commemmerative poster will be available.
Gophers Ranked No. 28
After being listed at No. 15 in last week’s edition of the GymInfo National Rankings, Minnesota fell out of the top 25 this week, and is currently listed at No. 28. At this point in the season, rankings are based on average score.
Minnesota has eight of the teams listed in the top 25 this week on its 2007 schedule: No. 3 Utah, No. 9 Iowa State, No. 12 Michigan, No. 16 Arizona, No. 17 West Virginia, No. 19 Penn State, No. 21 Michigan State, and No. 23 Ohio State.
National Rankings by Event
Below are the rankings by event for the Gophers, and this week’s opponent, Utah:
Minnesota Utah Vault No. 51 No. 3 Bars No. 33 tie-No. 1 Beam No. 15 No. 7 Floor No. 15 No. 3 Individual Rankings
One Gopher gymnasts is listed in the GymInfo National Rankings this week. Carmelina Carabajal is tied for No. 12 on floor with an average score of 9.862.
Sophomore Carmelina Carabajal continued her success from the first meet of the season when she earned a 9.825 on floor at Penn State to win her second floor title in two meets. In addition to her win on floor, Carabajal came in eighth on bars with a 9.475, was fifth on beam with a 9.675.
Seniors Stepping Up
Seniors Stephanie Funk and Kelly Ganchan each led Minnesota on an event last weekend at Penn State. Funk had Minnesota’s highest bars score, a 9.725 to place fourth. On vault, Kelly Ganchan was the Gophers’ top scorer with a 9.700 to tie for fourth place.
Another New All around Performer
Freshman Alexis Russell made her all around debut at Penn State, earning a 36.950 to place third. Russell competed in three events in the season opener, but was added to the beam line up at PSU, and earned a 9.000.
Carmelina Carabajal and Jamie Bullock both competed in the all around in the season opener, but due to injuries, neither Carabajal nor Bullock were all around competitors at Penn State last weekend.
A Struggle on Vault
Minnesota struggled on vault against Penn State, earning a score of 46.750. Two of the gymnasts who were in the vault line up a week earlier were not able to vault at Penn State, as both Jamie Bullock and Carmelina Carabajal sat out on vault due to injuries. Ashley Mutchler and Kim Womack were inserted into the line up in place of Bullock and Carabajal.
The Gophers’ vault score of 46.750 was the lowest since the 1995 season, when Minnesota scored a 46.675 against Missouri on Feb. 11, 1995.
This Week’s Opponent - Utah
No. 3 Utah is coming off a 196.725-193.850 win over Washington on Jan. 19. The All-America duo of Nicolle Ford and Ashley Postell were key players in Utah’s win. Ford won the all-around with a 39.50, followed by Postell at 39.375. For the second straight week, Utah captured every individual title and the all-around. Ford won the all-around, beam and tied for first on floor, Postell won the bars and tied for first on floor, and Kristina Baskett won vault.
Utah is coached by Greg Marsden, in his 32nd season as the head coach of the Utah program. Megan Marsden is in her 23rd season coaching at Utah, and is the associate head coach. Jeff Graba is in his second season as an assistant coach at Utah.
Minnesota vs. Utah
In the last meeting between the two teams, Utah defeated Minnesota by a 196.650-193.400 margin in the team’s dual meet on Feb. 17, 2006 in Salt Lake City. The last time the two teams met at the Sports Pavilion was on Feb. 5, 2005, when Minnesota lost 194.450 - 195.275.
Minnesota and Utah have met in regular-season action in every season since 1994. The two teams began scheduling meets when Jim and Meg Stephenson moved from Utah to take over the Minnesota program for the 1993 season.
Minnesota has only won one competition against Utah in the series history. Both teams competed at a quad meet at Arizona State on Feb. 18, 2000. Minnesota placed third with a 195.150, while Utah came in fourth with a 194.675.
Last Week: Gophers at Penn State
The No. 15 Golden Gopher women’s gymnastics team lost to No. 18 Penn State by a 191.175-192.900 margin. Carmelina Carabajal took first place on the floor exercise with a mark of 9.825, earning her second floor title in two weeks.
The Gophers were on bars in the first rotation, and compiled a team score of 47.825. Minnesota’s top scorer was senior Stephanie Funk, who finished fourth with a 9.725. Junior Angela Walker was the second-highest finisher for the Gophers, tying for fifth with a mark of 9.625. Penn State’s Katie Perret was the event winner with a 9.875, leading her team to a win on the bars with a team score of 48.275.
Minnesota moved to the vault in the second rotation, and struggled, earning the team’s lowest score of the competition. The Gophers tallied a 46.750, while Penn State had a team score of 48.575. Senior Kelly Ganchan was the top scorer for the Gophers, earning a 9.700 to tie for fourth place. Junior Ashley Muchler was seventh in the event with a 9.600. Rosie Smith was the event winner, earning a 9.800 for the Nittany Lions.
The Gophers earned their highest team score of the night on floor, winning the event 48.625-48.075. Carmelina Carabajal was the event champion with a 9.825. Junior Andy Cornelius was also in the top three, finishing second with a mark of 9.775. Juniors Ashley Stanton and Amanda Miles tied for sixth place on floor with scores of 9.700.
On the beam, Minnesota tied with Penn State with each team earning a 47.975. Ashley Mutchler was the top scorer for the Gophers, earning a 9.750 to mark her best score of the season and tie for second place on beam. Amanda Miles was fourth, earning a 9.700. Stephanie Sullivan was the event winner, scoring a 9.825.
Minnesota had one all around competitor, Alexis Russell. The freshman earned a 36.950 in the first all around performance of her Gopher career.