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Feb. 18, 2012
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - The 10th-ranked Penn State women's gymnastics team continued its success in 2012 with a 195.950-183.200 victory against Brockport at home in Rec Hall. Freshman Krystal Welsh(Bowie, Md.) was the Ann Carr award winner as the most inspirational Penn State gymnast of the meet.
"All and all it was a pretty good night for us as we got off to a great start on vault," said head coach Jeff Thompson. "The crowd was enthusiastic and it really helped keep our team's energy going all night. Unfortunately, we struggled a little on the uneven bars with some short handstands and a few steps on some dismounts. Balance beam was also uncharacteristically shaky for a top five beam team. I thought we finished the meet off with a strong performance on floor, but it's clear we still need to work on the little things, and more importantly the mental aspect of our sport."
The Nittany Lions opened the meet on fire scoring a 49.225 on vault, just .025 from their season high. All six competitors posted scores of 9.800 or better. Juniors Madison Merriam (Gaithersburg, Md.) and Sharaya Musser (Colorado Springs, Colo.) shared the title with scores of 9.875. Sophomore Lindsay Musgrove (League City, Texas) took third with a career-high 9.850, while Welsh tied her personal best with a 9.825 for fourth. Freshman Lexi Carroll (Olney, Md.) and senior Whitney Bencsko(Pompton Plains, N.J.) shared fifth place after each posted a 9.800.
Penn State moved to the uneven bars in rotation two where the team earned a 48.800 for an overall meet score of 98.025. The Nittany Lions had a strong lead as Brockport was trailing with a 90.075. Bencsko took top honors for Penn State winning the title with a 9.800, while senior Alexandra Stine (Philipsburg, Pa.) earned a season-high 9.775. Sophomore Kassidy Stauder(Palmerton, Pa.) and Merriam tied for third scoring a 9.750 and Musser took fifth with a 9.725.
Rotation three saw Penn State competing on beam where the squad earned a 48.900, while Brockport headed to floor and scored a 47.525. The Nittany Lions claimed the top five spots on beam with Musser leading the way with a 9.900. Senior Daryl Konsevick(Rutherford, N.J.) tied her season high with a 9.875 for second place and Stauder turned in a 9.750 for third. Bencsko claimed fourth with a 9.700 and Welsh was fifth with a 9.675.
The Lions closed out the meet and solidified their victory in the fourth rotation with a 49.025 on floor. Welsh tied her career best with a 9.850 for the first individual event title of her career. Musser finished second with a 9.825 and Merriam claimed third with a 9.800. Konsevick shared fourth place with teammates Carroll, who performed on floor for the first time in her career, and Bencsko as they all scored a 9.775.
Penn State had four all-around competitors in tonight's meet. Musser once again topped the list with a 39.325, while Bencsko earned a 39.075 for second place. Welsh score a 39.025 for the first top three finish of her collegiate career and Merriam posted a 38.625 for fourth.
The Nittany Lions are back in action on Feb. 25 at Big Ten foe Ohio State. The Penn State men's team will join them in Columbus for a double dual with the Buckeyes. Meet action is set for 5 p.m.
The Penn State women's gymnastics team is on Twitter. Follow @PSUGym for the inside scoop. You can also find updates on the Nittany Lion gymnasts at GoPSUsports.com and on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/pennstatewomensgymnastics.