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Jan. 12, 2016

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IOWA CITY, Iowa — The University of Iowa women’s gymnastics team added a personal touch to the season ticket holder experience, hand delivering the tickets to show appreciation to the GymHawk faithful.


“The personal delivery of season tickets was a wonderful way to close out the holiday season,” said UI head coach Larissa Libby. “To meet face-to-face with the families who support us and thank them was a heart warming experience. Some families even took the time to put signs in their windows to welcome the team. It was a rewarding adventure for everyone involved.”

The GymHawks visited several different houses throughout the evening and were gladly received by excited fans.

“It was so special to have the team deliver the season tickets to my home,” said season ticket holder Katherine Noble Smith. “The tickets were a Christmas present for my husband. I was so excited.”

It seemed like every home had a story like Smith’s as to why they purchase season tickets.

“Everyone was so gracious,” said Libby. “We don’t get to hear the stories. We see the fans and feel the support, but we don’t always get to hear the little details. You always want to make that connection with the people that spend their time supporting you, the true fans. So to be able to go and do that was special. Some people were even in tears.”

The fans went above and beyond to make the experience just as enjoyable for the GymHawks as it was for them.

“The girls had a great experience and would text me after every house,” said Libby. “Someone even put up a sign that said ‘Welcome GymHawks’ to make them feel comfortable and at home before they even got to the door. It was a great overall experience. You are always looking for a way to give back and to be able to make a connection with season ticket holders was a great opportunity.”

The outing not only gave the Hawkeyes the opportunity to connect with their fan base, but to create more friendly faces in the crowds at home meets.

“It was wonderful being able to connect with our fans on a more personal level,” said junior Angel Metcalf. “Being able to meet them face-to-face and hand them their season tickets was a special opportunity. We love getting to know fans and their families and we cannot wait to see all of out fans at our home meets this year.”

Senior Opua Calucag echoed her teammates sentiments.

“When we compete in an arena like Carver, it’s hard to see who is in the crowd cheering us on,” said Calucag. “Being able to match faces to names was exciting. We are so grateful for our fans and hope they felt appreciated.”

They GymHawks return to action on Friday, Jan. 15, when they travel to East Lansing, Michigan, to take on the Michigan State Spartans. The meet is slated to begin at 6 p.m. (CT) inside the Jenison Field House.

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