Hawkeyes Open Season At Cancun Classic

Dec. 28, 2007

Iowa City, IA –

This Week

The University of Iowa women’s gymnastics team will compete at the Cancun Classic, January 1-6 in Cancun, Mexico. Competition will take place at the Hilton Cancun Golf & Beach Resort and Iowa will begin competing January 4 at 5:30 p.m. The Hawkeyes will see competition from West Virginia University, University of Oklahoma, University Wisconsin Whitewater, Louisiana State University, Texas Woman’s University, University of Denver and University of Minnesota.

Season Preview

The Hawkeyes begin their season ranked 40th nationally. Top returnees include Katie Burke, Brandi Loffer, Kara Pinjuv, Amanda Rudolph, Jenifer Simbhudas and Ally Zipse. Iowa is coming off a sixth place finish at the 2007 Big Ten Championships. The Hawkeyes produced one first team all-Big Ten competitor, Katie Burke. Kara Pinjuv and Jenifer Simbhudas earned second team all-Big Ten honors.

Scouting the Hawkeyes

Iowa returns nine lettermen from last year when it finished 8-11 record and a sixth-place finish at the Big Ten Championships. Iowa adds six new members to the team for the 2008 season. Kelly Galau, from Apple Valley, MN, Houry Gebeshian, from Newton, MA, Andrea Hurlburt, from Waterloo, IA, Dani McDaniel, from O’Fallon, IL, Arielle Sucich, from Fort Salonga, NY, and Kristen Ward, from Fort Wayne, IN. All are expected to be contributors for the Hawkeyes this season.

Head Coach Larissa Libby

In her first three years as Iowa Head Coach, Larissa Libby recorded a 20-42 record. Before becoming head coach, Libby was Iowa’s associate head coach for one year and an assistant coach the previous three seasons. While associate head coach, Libby helped lead the GymHawks to a school record 49.425 beam performance in 2004. In addition to the record breaking performance, the 2004 GymHawks recorded a 49.0 or higher seven times on beam under Libby’s guidance.

Next Competition

Iowa will travel to Baton Rouge, LA to face LSU on January 11. The meet is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. The GymHawks upcoming home meets against Illinois on Jan. 25 at 7 p.m. and Ohio State on Feb. 9 at 8 p.m. which will be broadcasted by the Big Ten Network. The Illinois meet will air Jan. 29 at 8 p.m. and the Ohio State Meet will air Feb. 14 at 6 p.m.

Complete Release in PDF Format

Click HERE for the Big Ten Network home page.