No. 11 Women's Gymnastics Competes for NCAA Berth Saturday
April 1, 2011
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - The 11th-ranked Penn State women's gymnastics team travels to Tuscaloosa, Ala. and the campus of the University of Alabama for the 2011 NCAA Regional Championships on Saturday, April 2 at 7 p.m. ET.
Penn State joins No. 2 Alabama, No. 14 Illinois, No. 22 Auburn, No. 25 Central Michigan and Kentucky for the meet, which will be held at the Coleman Coliseum.
This will be the 27th consecutive trip to the NCAA Regional Championships for the Nittany Lions, who last advanced to the NCAA National Championship as a team in 2009, where they finished ninth overall. Last season, former Nittany Lion Brandi Personett and sophomore Sharaya Musser (Colorado Springs, Colo.) competed at the National Championship. The pair combined for seven NACGC/W All-America honors with Musser earning four and Personett accruing three.
The top two teams and the top two all-around competitors not on an advancing team from each of the six Regionals will receive an automatic berth to the national championships. In addition, individual event winners will also advance if they are not a part of an advancing team or one of the all-around qualifiers. Kent State University and the Wolstein Center will host the 2011 NCAA National Championships on April 15-17.
Penn State will open the 2011 NCAA Regional Championship on beam and have a bye in rotation two. The Nittany Lions will head to floor in the third rotation and on to vault in the fourth. After a bye in the fifth rotation, Penn State concludes the meet on bars.
On Saturday, March 19 at the Big Ten Championship, sophomore Sharaya Musser (Colorado Springs, Colo.) and junior Natalie Ettl (Waukesha, Wis.) were both named First Team All-Big Ten, while sophomore Madison Merriam (Gaithersburg, Md.) picked up Second Team laurels. Musser claimed the all-around title and was co-champion on vault, while Ettl defended her Big Ten uneven bars title with a 9.925. Merriam finished second in the all-around and was Penn State's top performer on floor, finishing in second place. The Nittany Lions finished second as a team at the Big Ten Championship, scoring a 196.375, their third-best score of the season.