Women's Gymnastics Upends No. 19 Illinois, 196.3-195.775
March 2, 2013
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - The No. 22 Penn State women's gymnastics team knocked off the 19th-ranked Illinois Fighting Illini on Saturday evening by a count of 196.300-195.775. The 196.3 team score is the third-straight meet where Penn State has posted a 196.3 or higher.
"We basically had a few team goals going into this meet," said head coach Jeff Thompson. "First off, we wanted to have a strong performance on bars. Second, we did not want to count a fall. Our third goal was to equal our high score of 196.7. Even though we didn't reach that, we are still pleased with a 196.3 in a tough road environment."
"Our fourth goal was to close the meet with a strong beam performance," Thompson continued. "We hit 24 for 24 routines. We nailed the door shut on beam with six beautiful routines. Most importantly, we get to drop our 194.125 score from earlier in the season that counts towards our RQS rankings, which should propel us up quite a bit."
Senior Sharaya Musser (Colorado Springs, Colo.) earned the all-around title with a final score of 39.5. Joining Musser in all-around action for the second-straight meet was junior Kassidy Stauder (Palmerton, Pa.). The junior finished with an all-around mark of 39 flat. Penn State posted marks over 49 on three of four events.
The Nittany Lions put up a mark of 49.125 on the vault, with three scores of 9.875. Sophomore Lexi Carroll (Olney, Md.) matched her season and career- high with a 9.875 on the vault. Also joining Carroll in the 9.875 department was Musser and senior Madison Merriam (Gaithersburg, Md.). Juniors Lindsay Musgrove (League City, Texas) and Sidney Sanabria-Robles (Caguas, Puerto Rico) each tallied scores of 9.750 to round out the top five for Penn State on the vault.
Over on the uneven bars, Penn State finished with a score of 48.975, tying for its fifth highest mark of the 2013 season. Musser led the way for the blue and white on the bars with a score of 9.850. Sophomore Krystal Welsh (Bowie, Md.) matched her career-high of 9.825, which was set on March 3 of last season. Merriam and freshman Samantha Musto (Mays Landing, N.J.) each finished with marks of 9.775, while Sanabria-Robles and Stauder each checked in at 9.750.
The Lions finished with a 49.075 on the balance beam, with Musser putting together an impressive routine to match her season-high with a 9.925. Stauder had an amazing leadoff on beam, posting a mark of 9.850, her highest score on the beam since posting a 9.9 back on Jan. 19. Welsh and Sanabria-Robles each earned scores of 9.775, while Carroll finished with a 9.75.
Penn State had a strong evening on the floor exercise, finishing with a 49.125 for its fourth highest mark on the season. Carroll and Merriam led the way for Nittany Lions on the floor, putting up marks of 9.875, which matched Carroll's career-high mark set last week. Musser finished with a 9.850 while Musgrove checked in with a 9.825 to round out the scores above 9.8. Stauder and freshman Taylor Alotta (New Tripoli, Pa.) each finished with a score of 9.7.
The Lions return home on March 9 to take on New Hampshire, Temple, and Penn at 4 p.m. in Rec Hall. All tickets can be purchased by calling Penn State Athletics at 1-800-NITTANY or by visiting the Athletic Ticket Office inside the Bryce Jordan Center.
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