March 12, 2010
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BATON ROUGE, LA – The University of Iowa women’s gymnastics team fell to No. 10 Louisiana State Friday evening, 197.150-195.400. In a return to her alma mater, Head Coach Larissa Libby and the GymHawks scored greater than a 195.000 for the third straight meet and reached career marks in two events, but weren’t able to pick up the win in Baton Rouge, LA.
“I’m extremely pleased with our performance,” said Libby. “This is such a difficult place to compete and our team handled it with the utmost class. We were very determined and disciplined out there. To finish so strong in such a tough environment was amazing.”
The Black and Gold began the night on bars were they scored a 48.875. Houry Gebeshian led the Hawkeyes with a 9.875, good for a share of first place. The junior’s score was the best of her career. Junior Rebecca Simbhudas scored a 9.825 to finish in seventh place.
In their second rotation, Iowa scored a 48.750 on vault. Sophomore Annie Szatkowski led the squad with a score of 9.825 as she tied for third place. Simbhudas continued her team contributions with a score of 9.800 and a tie for sixth place.
Iowa then moved to floor where they tied a team season high of 48.900. Sophomore Jessa Hansen led the Hawkeyes and finished in third place with a score of 9.850. Gebeshian and Simbhudas scored a 9.800 apiece and tied for fifth place.
The GymHawks finished the meet on beam where they scored a 48.875, a season team high. Simbhudas led Iowa with a 9.850 as she tied for fourth. Sophomore Melissa Miller and Hansen each scored a 9.825 and finished in a tie for seventh. Miller’s performance set a career high for her on beam.
“We’re starting to see top scores from different girls and that’s what is certainly bringing success,” said Libby. “They’re becoming a more well-rounded team and becoming more competitive.”
Simbhudas finished in second place in the all-around competition with a score of 39.275 while Gebeshian scored a 39.125 and finished in third. Additionally, Hansen finished in fourth and scored a 39.025.
“We’re starting to see that it’s not about talent levels and physical ability,” added Libby. “It’s who is hanging tougher mentally. These last few meets have been season-changers for us. They’re starting to figure out what it takes to be more competitive.”
The GymHawks will complete their regular season March 19 with a meet against Southeast Missouri State in Camp Girardeau, MO. Competition will take place in the Houck Field House and is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. (CT).