Feb. 9, 2009
The University of Iowa women’s gymnastics team (6-3, 2-1 Big Ten) sticks inside the state of Iowa for a home-and-home series with rival Iowa State. The GymHawks travel to Ames Thursday for their first meeting with the Cyclones before returning to Iowa City four days later to compete against Iowa State inside Carver-Hawkeye Arena. Both meets are scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. and one point in the Hy-Vee Cy-Hawk Series will be on the line in each meet.
The Hy-Vee Cy-Hawk Series
Iowa has clinched this year’s challenge, 15-4, after nine events. The Hawkeyes have wins in football (three points), soccer, women’s cross country, wrestling, men’s basketball, women’s basketball and women’s swimming (two points each). The Cyclones have won volleyball and men’s cross country.
Iowa nows holds a 3-2 edge over Iowa State all-time in the competition, dating back to 2005. The Hawkeyes also claimed the title in 2005 and 2007, while the Cyclones won in 2006 and 2008.
Scouting Iowa State
Iowa State (0-5, 0-2 Big 12) has not recorded a meet-win this season, though they have faced five teams in the Top 25. Most recently, the Cyclones dropped a very close meet with No. 18 Minnesota in Minneapolis last Saturday, 195.775-195.225. Senior Jasmine Thompson has been Iowa State’s top competitor this season, scoring team-highs on beam, bars and floor, as well as being Iowa State’s top all-around competitor.
The Cyclones are coached by Jay Ronayne, who is in his third season. He led Iowa State to NCAA Regional appearances in each of his first two seasons.
Last Time Out
Iowa traveled to Columbus, OH, Feb. 7 for a Big Ten dual meet with Ohio State but fell to the Buckeyes, 195.225-194.250. The GymHawks scored higher on three of the four events and had a competitor take first place on each event. Senior Jenifer Simbhudas and sophomore Houry Gebeshian shared second place in the all-around (39.050).
Iowa was led on vault by freshman Annie Szatkowski, who scored a season-high 9.825. Sophomore Rebecca Simbhudas shined for Iowa on uneven bars (9.850) and beam (9.875), while sister Jenifer won floor (9.850).
Freshman Amy Center saw her first taste of collegiate action, replacing Kara Pinjuv (injury) on floor and scoring a 9.550. In addition, senior Brandi Loffer returned to the lineup for the first time this season on beam (9.125). Loffer had competed as an exhibition competitor in two meets earlier this season as she made her way back from knee injuries.
The GymHawks head out west Feb. 20 for a match-up with Southern Utah in Cedar City, UT. Meet time is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. (CT).