Dec. 5, 2015
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IOWA CITY, Iowa — The University of Iowa women’s gymnastics team made its debut at the annual Black and Gold Intrasquad held in the UI Field House. The GymHawks split to form two teams — a black team and a gold team — and showcased their routines to a substantial and lively crowd.
“It was amazing,” said head coach Larissa Libby. “We really expected to have crickets today because there are seven teams going, and I know that everyone is also very focused on the Big Ten Football Championship game. We are all focused on Iowa. What a great day for us to have so many committed fans come out to watch gymnastics.
“I feel really great about that, and I am excited to see where that will take us with the season opener in January and leading up to hosting the first round of the national tournament. We are hoping our crowds will build each time we compete, and today was a great start.”
With their season opening a week earlier than last year, the Hawkeyes put more weight on the outcome out this year’s Black and Gold Intrasquad.
“I am glad we didn’t start the season today,” said Libby. “It was very inconsistent. I love the energy our team has and certainly we have a lot more than we did before. With 22 members, we are definitely louder. With that comes a little uncertainty. Narrowing down is a lot harder because we have a lot to choose from. I think in the first half of the meet I would have said experience was winning out. You could tell where our depth was and who are experienced competitors were. We have options and I feel good about that.
“I feel good about the chemistry and to me that is the most important thing. You cant put a team out there and be successful if they don’t trust each other. Definitely we have some issues and some inconsistencies on landings. Those are things we are just going to have to work on over the next couple of weeks.”
Senior Alie Glover echoed Libby’s sentiments.
“It was really exciting,” said Glover. “It is one thing to have an intrasquad in our gym, but it is another to be out in a different environment with different equipment and see how people react. There were some things we expected and some surprises. It was a great opportunity to get out there and see how everything unfolded.
“Cancun is going to be very comparable to where we are now [Field House]. So that is another reason why this was such a great experience for us. I think as far as preparing us for Cancun, it did that. I think we got out here, we made our mistakes and now we have almost a full month to get back in the gym and work on those areas.”
The GymHawks open the regular season on the road at the Cancun Classic on January 2.