Feb. 23, 2009
IOWA CITY, IA – University of Iowa women’s gymnast Rebecca Simbhudas has been named co-Big Ten Gymnast of the Week for her performances for the GymHawks last week.
In Iowa’s Feb. 16 dual meet against in-state rival Iowa State, Simbhudas captured her first career all-around title (39.225), earning first place on uneven bars (9.825) and balance beam (9.850), helping lead Iowa to its first regular season sweep of the Cyclones since 1992. The sophomore from Markham, Ontario, also drew a 9.8 on floor after being a late replacement for sophomore Kristen Ward.
Against Southern Utah Feb. 20, Simbhudas increased her all-around performance from earlier in the week, scoring a 39.250 and a second-place finish. She scored a near-flawless routine on balance beam, scoring a 9.925, which is the highest mark any Iowa gymnast had received on that event in nearly three years. Former Hawkeye Danielle Legeai earned the same score against Iowa State March 17, 2006.
“We are very proud of Rebecca,” said Iowa Head Coach Larissa Libby. “She’s always been a really great gymnast and over the last couple of weeks, she’s starting to figure out what she needs to do to be successful on the floor. She’s taking on a more active leadership role and she is showing that she can not only be a beautiful gymnast, but also a gymnast that needs to be reckoned with.”
It is Simbhudas’ first-ever weekly laurel. She shares the honor with Penn State junior Brandi Personett.