No. 15 Lions Finish Second in Quad Meet at Kentucky
LEXINGTON, Ky.; January 10, 2014 - A season-best team score on the uneven bars and floor exercise were not enough for the No. 15 Penn State women's gymnastics team to win the Excite Night at the Kentucky Classis on Saturday at Memorial Coliseum. No. 21 Kentucky topped the standings with 195.000, followed by the Nittany Lions with 193.975, West Virginia at 193.700 and Ball State at 190.875.
"We never though that we would have two people fall on balance beam and that is something that is hard to come back from," said head coach Jeff Thompson, "but we came right back on the floor exercise and performed very well. We also opened the meet with a good effort on the uneven bars and closed out night with some good performances on the vault. I think there were a lot of bright spots for us tonight and now we just have to learn from it and continue to get better."
Senior Kassidy Stauder (Palmerton, Pa.) enjoyed a solid night on all four apparatus and finished tied for second in the all-around with a score of 38.925. She led the team and set a new career-high with a career-best 9.800 performance on the uneven bars and also paced the Lions on the balance beam with a mark of 9.725. Her scores of 9.625 on the vault and 9.775 on the floor rounded out her performance.
"Kassidy was outstanding on all four events for us tonight," said Thompson. "She probably had the best vault of her career tonight and she anchored us on the beam with a solid score. She also contributed a career-best on the uneven bars and was very good again on the balance beam. Anytime you nearly score 39 [points] in the all-around, that is a good thing."
Another solid performance in the all-around was turned in by junior Krystal Welsh (Bowie, Md.), who equaled Stauder's score of 38.925 and tied for second. She tied for the team lead with Stauder on the uneven bars (9.800), scored 9.675 on the balance beam and 9.725 on the floor exercise.
Juniors Randi Lau (Honolulu, Hawaii) and Sidney Sanabria-Robles (Caguas, Puerto Rico) both posted scores of 9.825 on the floor exercise to tie for the event title. Lau tied her career-best, which she set at Florida during her freshman season at LSU, while Sanabria-Robles set a new career high on the event.
Lau finished fourth in the all-around with a score of 38.850, giving Penn State three of the top four all-arounders, adding scores of 9.675 on the vault, 9.725 on the uneven bars and 9.625 on the balance beam to her career-best score on the floor exercise.
Sanabria-Robles added a 9.500 mark on the vault, a 9.750 score on the uneven bars and a 9.675 on the balance beam to her floor performance to cap a 38.750 in the all-around to finish sixth.
"When you have four performers scoring well on all four events that is a very good thing," said Thompson. "We have had that in each of our first two meets, now we just need to get a little better on the small details. We'll learn from tonight and look forward to opening up our home schedule next weekend."
The Nittany Lions will take to Rec Hall floor on Saturday, Jan. 18 when they host a quad-meet with Cornell, Southeast Missouri State and UIC. The meet will begin at 4 p.m.
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