Jan. 27, 2012
Minnesota Meet Notes l Penn State Meet Notes
Live Scoring l Live Video l Live Blog
The University of Minnesota women's gymnastics team plays host to No. 9 Penn State this weekend. The Gophers look to grab their first dual meet win of the season after falling to nationally ranked teams in each of their first three competitions. The meet begins at 6 p.m. in the Sports Pavilion.
Last Time vs. Penn State
Minnesota last met Penn State during the 2011 Big Ten Championships, which was held at the Sports Pavilion in Minneapolis, Minn. The Gophers finished fourth with a 195.325 while the Nittany Lions claimed second with a 196.375.
Last Meet: Illinois
The Golden Gophers posted a 193.000 at home, but they were still edged out by five-time defending Big Ten Conference Champion and No. 11-ranked Michigan, who scored a 193.150.
Minnesota had a strong start to the meet as they scored a 48.850 on vault with only having five gymnasts perform. Sophomore Kayla Slechta was the Gophers' high scorer as she earned a 9.825, which was good enough to tie for third place. Fellow sophomore Dusti Russell (9.700) and freshman Kylie Schermann (9.750) also vaulted well as they each posted a personal best score.
Minnesota tallied a team total of 47.675 on bars in the second rotation. Senior Lucy Ennis made her season debut for the Gophers and pulled out a third place finish with a 9.750. Again, Russell and Schermann notched career best marks with a 9.725 and a 9.375.
The Maroon and Gold moved on to beam with hopes of putting the last event behind them, but the problems continued to follow them as they would score a 47.500 in one of their strongest events. Schermann was the lone Gopher to place in the top three as she finished in a tie for second with a personal best score of 9.750.
With one event remaining, the Gophers didn't want to end the meet on a bad note, so the team rallied together and hit nearly all six events. Slechta would win the event with a 9.850 while senior Briana Jones and Schermann would tie for second with two Michigan gymnasts with a score of 9.800, which was a personal best score for each.
Russell and Schermann would be the lone Gophers to place in all around as Russell scored a 38.750 and Schermann earned a 38.675.
Struggling with the Blue and White
The Gophers have an all-time record of 4-20 against Penn State. Minnesota's last defeat over the Nittany Lions came at the 2006 Big Ten Championships, which the Maroon and Gold won. The last dual meet victory was Jan. 28, 2006 when Minnesota posted a 194.175 to trump Penn State's 193.500.
The trio of Gopher freshmen have had a huge impact on Minnesota's season thus far with at least two contributing a score on each event. Cierra Tomson and Kylie Schermann competed in the all around while Jenny Covers focused on vault and bars.
Minnesota began the season ranked No. 22 in the GymInfo Rankings, but since then, they have dropped out of the rankings to No. 28. This is the first time since March 22, 2010 that the Gophers have not been ranked. In the event rankings, the Gophers are Top 20 in two events as a team: vault (16) and floor (t-14).
Junior Shannon Golich is the lone Gopher gymnast to be ranked in the Top 20 individual. She is currently tied for 11th on beam after scoring a 9.850 in the team's season opener against Ohio State.
Big Ten Leads the March
The Big Ten Conference has six schools ranked in the GymInfo Top 25 rankings, which is matched by both the Southeastern Conference and the Pac-12. Outside of the big three conferences, no other grouping has more than two programs in the Top 25 rankings.
Cherwink Suffers Another Setback
Sophomore Justine Cherwink will miss the first half of the 2012 season, due to a leg injury, which she suffered back in October. The Aledo, Texas native missed much of last season because of a similar leg injury but with the opposite leg. She is currently on schedule and a return this season is highly anticipated.
Starting 2012 on the Right Foot
Minnesota started the 2012 season hot as they earned a 195.075, which is the highest a Gopher squad has scored for a season opener since 2003 (195.525).
- Kayla Slechta Community Night: All community members of Shakopee and friends and family of Kayla
Slechta can receive $4 general admission!
- Club Night: All gym clubs receive a special discount! Ask your club for the coupon.
- Gopher Elite Kid's Club Party: Pregame party in club room. Goldy will be in attendance! And food will
be provided! Are you a Gopher Elite member? Click here to join!
- Park Nicollet Night: Employers from Park Nicollet Clinics can attend event for free.
Next Week: No. 5 Oklahoma/No. 4 Nebraska/Centenary
The Gophers hit the road for a quadrangular meet against Big Ten newcomer No. 4 Nebraska, Centenary and host No. 5 Oklahoma. The competition begins at 7 p.m. in Norman, Okla.
Follow the Action
All home meets can be watched live by signing up for Gopher All-Access. Each web stream will be accompanied with live commentary from former gymnasts Jamie Bullock and Jade Beattie DeSmidt. Live stat updates can also be found on the schedule page at GopherSports.com.
For the latest and most updated information on Minnesota women's gymnastics check out the team on Facebook and Twitter.
Get Score Updates on Your Phone
Fans can get scoring updates from all Golden Gopher athletics through the Twitter account @GopherScores. Just find and follow @GopherScores, then set up your phone or mobile device to receive text updates.