Jan. 4, 2011
- Download your Iowa Hawkeye iPhone app!
- Iowa and the Big Ten Network
- Big Ten Network: Free Hawkeye Video
- 24 Hawkeyes to Watch
The University of Iowa women’s gymnastics team will begin its 2011 campaign when the Hawkeyes travel to East Lansing, MI, to take on Michigan State, Michigan and Western Michigan Jan. 7. Competition is scheduled to begin at 5:30 p.m. (CT) at Jenison Field House. A member of the Iowa gymnastics staff will offer interactive content live from Jenison Field House via the Official Iowa Gymnastics Blog.
Scouting the Hawkeyes
Iowa is coming off a 7-11 record and third place finish at the 2010 Big Ten Championships. The Hawkeyes also placed fifth at the NCAA Regionals, their third consecutive appearance and fourth in six years. With 11 returning letterwinners, the Hawkeyes will be led by returning all-Big Ten selections Rebecca Simbhudas, Houry Gebeshian and Jessa Hansen. Simbhudas is a returning all-American, while Gebeshian is the reigning Big Ten champion on beam.
Scouting the Opponents
Michigan State returns 10 gymnasts from its 2010 squad which tied for fourth at the Big Ten Championships and finished sixth at the NCAA Regionals. The Spartans made their 13th NCAA Regional appearance and fourth consecutive in 2010. MSU will be led by senior and returning all-Big Ten selection Kelsey Morley.
Michigan enters the 2011 season ranked ninth in the country after earning its fourth consecutive and 18th overall Big Ten title in 2010, closing the season with a 10th-place finish at the NCAA Championships. The Wolverines return eight letterwinners and five All-Americans from last year’s squad.
Western Michigan is led by second year head coach Dave Kuzara. The Broncos finished the 2010 season with an 8-13 regular season record and a sixth place finish at the Mid-American Conference Championships.
Head Coach Larissa Libby
Entering her seventh season at Iowa, Larissa Libby has a career record of 52-62-1. Libby coached the 2010 GymHawks to a third place finish at the Big Ten Championships, their best finish in six years, as well as their fourth regional appearance in six seasons. She was named North Central Region Coach of the Year in 2009 for her efforts in guiding the GymHawks to a 10-5 record and a sixth-place finish at the NCAA Regionals. She was also named co-Big Ten Coach of the Year in 2008. Libby served as associate head coach in 2004 and assistant coach from 2001-03 at Iowa before being named head coach in 2005.
The Hawkeyes will travel to Minneapolis, MN, for a Big Ten match-up against the Golden Gophers Jan. 15. Competition is scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. (CT) inside the Sports Pavilion.