The University of Minnesota women’s gymnastics team celebrated the 2007 season at the annual awards banquet on Saturday evening. Sophomore Carmelina Carabajal garnered the team’s Most Valuable Performer Award, as well as the Most Improved Award. Junior Amanda Miles was the recipient of the Mariam Award, and Alexis Russell was named the Freshman of the Year.
Carabajal earned Team MVP honors for the first time in her career. An All-Big Ten second team honoree, she tallied the team’s top floor exercise and all around scores of the season, and led the team in average scoring on floor and vault. Carabajal’s event scores counted in the team score 42 of 47 times in the 2007 season. She competed in the all around at eight meets, and was in the line up on bars, beam and floor at all 13 competitions.
The Mariam Award, named for former Gopher gymnast Marian Pourshoushtari, is given annually to the gymnast who does everything possible to be the best gymnast and person she can be. This year’s award recipient is junior Amanda Miles, who served as team captain and set career-best marks on both beam and floor in her junior season. Miles also achieved academically, earning Academic All-Big Ten honors as a psychology major. Miles will serve as team captain again in her senior season next year.
Alexis Russell was named the team’s Freshman of the Year. Russell was an all around competitor at 11 meets in the 2007 season, and earned the team’s second-highest all around score (39.125). She tallied the team’s highest vault score of the year with a 9.900 against Washington.
Twelve Gopher gymnasts earned letter awards: Jade Beattie, Carmelina Carabajal, Andy Cornelius, Stephanie Funk, Kelly Ganchan, Amanda Miles, Ashley Mutchler, Alexis Russell, Rehana Russell, Ashley Stanton, Angela Walker, and Kim Womack.