Aug. 30, 2012
The University of Minnesota has announced the 2013 women's gymnastics competition schedule. The Golden Gophers will host six regular-season home meets at the Sports Pavilion during the season, inlcuding the annual Always Dreaming Best of Minnesota Meet.
Minnesota continues its tradition of scheduling tough competition, with all but one of the Gophers' Division I opponents in the upcoming season having advanced to a NCAA Regional Championship in 2012. Four of Minnesota's 2012 competitors were among the 12 qualifying teams for last season's NCAA Championship: Arkansas, Florida, Nebraska and Ohio State.
The Big Ten Conference continued to be one of the premier leagues in the nation last season, and boasted six teams that finished the 2012 campaign ranked nationally in the Top 25 and two that qualified for the NCAA Championship. Minnesota will face each of its Big Ten opponents on March 23 at the Big Ten Championships, which will be hosted by Michigan State. The Gophers will also face all seven league opponents in regular-season meets throughout the year.
The Golden Gophers, who finished the 2012 season ranked No. 24 in the nation, will kick off the 2013 campaign at home against Washington on January 12. The Huskies finished the 2012 season tied for 18th in the national poll.
Minnesota's first road meet of the season will be to University Park, Pa. on January 19 for a triangular meet against Penn State and Florida. The Nittany Lions finished last season ranked No. 16 in the nation while the Gators were the NCAA runner-up.
Next, the Golden Gophers will return home to face Iowa State and Michigan on Hall of Fame Weekend. The Wolverines, who finished the 2012 campaign ranked 13th in the nation, narrowly missed qualifying for the NCAA Championships. The Cyclones finished 35th in the final GymInfo poll.
Heading into February, the Golden Gophers travel to East Lansing, Mich. on February 1 to compete against Michigan State. The Spartans finished the 2012 season ranked No. 32.
Minnesota will then return home to host Illinois, who finished tied for 18th in the final poll, on February 9.
On February 16, the Gophers will host the annual Always Dreaming Best of Minnesota Meet. The Always Dreaming Best of Minnesota is a competition featuring all four of the collegiate women's gymnastics teams in the state of Minnesota: Gustavus, Hamline, Winona State and the Gophers. The Best of Minnesota is one of the best-attended competitions each season. The meet is named Always Dreaming in honor of former Minnesota athletics compliance director Frank Kara, and will serve as a fundraising and awareness campaign for cancer research.
The Gophers then head to the Hawkeye State for a double-meet weekend against Iowa and Iowa State. The Maroon & Gold will head to Iowa City, Iowa first for a matchup with the Hawkeyes on February 21. They will then travel to Ames, Iowa to face off against the Cyclones for the second time in 2013.
The Maroon & Gold will remain on the round as they travel to face Florida for a dual meet on March 1.
On March 9, the Gophers will host a quad-meet with Arkansas, Nebraska and Centenary. Both Arkansas and Nebraska qualified for the NCAA Championships and finished in the Top 10.
The Gophers would then cap off the regular season with a dual meet against Ohio State, who finished 10th in the nation and qualified for nationals.
Following the completion of their regular-season schedule, Minnesota would then head to East Lansing, Mich. For the Big Ten Championships on March 23.
If the Golden Gophers finish the regular season among the Top 36 teams in the national rankings, they will advance to an NCAA Regional Championship for the 18th-straight season. The six schools hosting regional championships in 2013 are Alabama, Florida, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Oregon State and West Virginia. The top two teams from each regional will earn a berth in the 2013 NCAA Championship, which will be hosted by UCLA.