Floor Carries Gopher Gymnastics to Victory All six Golden Gophers scored 9.825 or better on the floor as Minnesota defeated North Carolina State.
The University of Minnesota women’s gymnastics team defeated North Carolina State tonight in a close match, 195.475-195.400. Minnesota gymnasts won or tied for first place on every event.
On vault, freshman Kayla Slechta won her eighth vault title of the season, scoring 9.875 to lead the Gophers. Shannon Golich was the second-highest Minnesota scorer, earning a 9.775. Freshman Justine Cherwink vaulted for the first time in her Gopher career, earning a 9.75. As a team, Minnesota tallied a 48.675. NC State earned a 48.75 on bars in the opening rotation, and led by .075 going into the second rotation.
Senior Kristin Furukawa won her fifth bars title this season, tying for first place with a 9.85. Kayla Slechta tied her personal best score on bars, earning a 9.80 to tie teammate Janell Campbell for third place. Justine Cherwink had a 9.75 on bars, her personal best score. Minnesota’s team score on bars was 48.80. The Wolfpack scored 48.90 on vault in the second rotation, bringing the running totals to 97.65-97.475 in favor of NC State.
Dusti Russell won her second balance beam title this season, earning a 9.85. Shannon Golich was second, scoring 9.825. Senior Ana Balboa tied for third place, earning a 9.80. The Gophers compiled a 48.675 as a team, while NC State earned a 49.10 on floor to extend its lead to .60 at 146.75-146.15 heading into the final rotation.
Freshman Dusti Russell won a second event title on floor, earning a personal-best 9.90 to tie for first place. The floor title is Russell’s second this season. Kayla Slechta was also in the top three, earning a 9.875 to place third. Ana Balboa earned her personal-best floor score with a 9.85, a special accomplishment for her on Senior Night. All six of Minnesota’s scores were 9.825 or better, leading Minnesota to a team score of 49.325. Minnesota’s floor score was enough to pull the Gophers ahead in the final standings at 195.475-195.40. NC State scored 48.65 on beam in the last rotation.
Freshman Kayla Slechta was the Gophers’ only all around competitor. She finished in third place with a 38.85.
Minnesota missed senior all around competitor Kendra Elm in tonight’s meet, after she suffered a lower leg muscle strain. The coaches are hopeful she can return to the line up next weekend at the Big Ten Championships.
The Big Ten Championship will begin at 2 p.m. at the Sports Pavilion next Saturday, March 19. Tickets are still available, and range in price from $5-$8. Call 1-800-U-GOPHER or visit gophersports.com to order tickets.