March 8, 2012
The University of Minnesota women's gymnastics team welcomes Iowa State this weekend for the Gophers' final home meet of the season. The Golden Gophers will celebrate the final home competition for three seniors: Lucy Ennis, Amber Hammerschmidt and Briana Jones. The meet begins at 6 p.m. at the Sports Pavilion.
Last Weekend: No. 8 Arkansas
The Gophers put together a solid performance in Fayetteville, Ark. to score a 195.475, but the No. 18-ranked Gophers would be outscored by nationally ranked Arkansas, who posted a 196.325.
In the first rotation, the Maroon and Gold struggled to have a consistent bars set, but showcased a trio of good routines to earn a score of 48.675. Senior Lucy Ennis posted a team-high score of 9.825 while sophomore Dusti Russell and junior Janell Campbell, respectively, scored a 9.800.
The Gophers followed bars with their top vault score of the season, 49.125, which outscored Arkansas' vault set. Freshman Jenny Covers headed the grouping by claiming second place with a career-best score of 9.875. Sophomore Kayla Slechta tallied the next highest score for Minnesota at 9.850, which was good enough to tie for third.
Heading into the third rotation, Minnesota trailed the No. 8-ranked Razorbacks 98.475 to 97.800. Arkansas opened the meet with a 49.100 on vault with Jaime Pisani leading the way with a 9.900. Both Pisani and Mariah Howdeshell came out in the second rotation to score a 9.925 on bars en route to a team score of 49.375.
The Gophers narrowed the Razorbacks lead in the third rotation as they performed on the floor, which is the team's strongest event. Four Minnesota gymnasts scored a 9.800 or better with Campbell getting the team's highest score of 9.875, which tied for second. Freshman Kylie Schermann and junior Shannon Golich were next in line for the Maroon and Gold as each of them scored a 9.825, respectively.
Minnesota struggled on beam in the final rotation as they posted a 48.575, due to a few miscues. A highlight on the apparatus was Golich, who second with a 9.875. The next best scores on beam were a pair of 9.800's, which came from Shermann and senior Amber Hammerschmidt, who scored her career-best.
Performing on the Road
Minnesota's score of 196.250 at the Iowa meet was the team's highest road score since March 12, 2004 when they scored a 197.700 at Arizona State.
Going Against the Best
The Gophers have faced six opponents this season that have been ranked in the Top 15.
Gophers in the Rankings
The Gophers' are ranked 18th for the second week in a row, which is the highest they have been ranked all season. Minnesota is one of six Big Ten teams to be ranked in the Top 25. The Gophers’ are ranked 13th on floor, which is the highest they have been ranked on any event this season.
Junior Shannon Golich is currently tied for 22nd in the nation on the balance beam with a RQS of 9.845. Sophomore Dusti Russell is currently tied for 27th in the nation in the all around with a RQS of 39.100.
Cherwink Set to Return
Sophomore Justine Cherwink is set to compete on bars this weekend for the first time in nearly a year. The Texas native was sidelined in October after tearing her right Achilles. She suffered the same injury last season but on the opposite leg.
Next Weekend: No. 22 Denver/No. 23 Arizona State/Iowa
The Gophers head to Denver, Colo. next weekend for a quadrangular which will include Iowa and Arizona State. The meet begins at 7 p.m. CST.
Follow the Action
All home meets except the Nebraska meet 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 scoring 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.