January 17, 2014

Gymnastics Hosts Wildcat Invitational Quad-Meet (Jan. 19, 1 p.m.)

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New Hampshire (0-1) vs #24 Minnesota (3-0), Brown (0-0), Yale (0-0)
  Wildcat Invitational
  Jan. 19, 2014 • 1:00 p.m. • Lundholm Gymnasium • Durham, N.H.
Live Stats:
http://www.unhwildcats.com/sports/gymnastics/2013-14/files/20140119.htm
Video Streaming: http://unhwildcats.tv/
Video Commentary: Courtney Connors, Austyn Fobes

DURHAM, N.H. – The UNH gymnastics team opens the home portion of its 2014 schedule by playing host to the annual Wildcat Invitational on Sunday, Jan. 19. The Wildcats welcome No. 24 University of Minnesota, Brown University and Yale University to Lundholm Gym for a 1 p.m. quad-meet. 

LAST TIME OUT (Jan. 11, 2014): UNH (0-1, 0-1 EAGL) opened the 2014 season with Saturday afternoon's 195.075-191.750 loss to East Atlantic Gymnastics League (EAGL) opponent Rutgers University at Livingston Recreation Center.

UNH opened the meet on uneven bars, where Hannah Barile (Sinking Spring, Pa.) and Erika Rudiger (Slidell, La.) shared fifth place with team-high scores of 9.575. The 'Cats produced a team score of 47.275. 

The Wildcats totaled a 48.625 on vault in the second rotation. In her UNH debut, Kelsey Aucoin (Double Oak, Texas) registered a team-high 9.775 for third place. Adrienne Hill (Midlothian, Va.), who missed all of last season due to injury, earned a share of fourth place with a 9.750, which was matched by freshman Meghan Pflieger (Barneveld, N.Y.). 

New Hampshire picked up the intensity in the third rotation -- floor exercise—by hitting on all its sets for a 48.650, the team's highest score of the meet. Pflieger recorded the team's top mark with a 9.775, which tied for third place with Gunzelman. Erin Machado (Swansea, Mass.) notched fifth place with a 9.750, while Jannelle Minichiello (Tewksbury, Mass.) and Rudiger tallied matching 9.725 scores to share seventh place.  

Aucoin was UNH's standout on balance beam with a 9.725, but the Wildcats finished with a 47.200, its lowest score.

SCOUTING THE GOPHERS: Two days after taking first place in its first meet of the season against Air Force and Lindenwood (Jan. 11), the Gophers defeated No. 20 Washington on the road last Monday night by a final score of 196.35-195.025. The Gophers won all four events and junior Cierra Tomson led the way by taking the all-around title with a career-high score of 39.375. With the win, the Gophers improved to 3-0 on the season.

On vault, junior Jenny Covers and sophomore Lindsay Mable claimed the top two spots in the event with scores of 9.900 and 9.850, respectively, en route to a team score of 49.000. Covers' previous high score in the vault as a Gopher was 9.700.

Minnesota had three gymnasts in the top four on bars, led by a Tomson 9.900. Mable and freshman Bailie Holst tied for third at 9.850, helping pace the team to a 49.100 score.

Hannah Nordquist (9.900) took first place on beam as Minnesota scored 49.025 on the event.

For the fourth consecutive event, it was a 9.9 that earned the title. Mable took home her fourth event win of the young season with the first place finish. 

SCOUTING THE BEARS: The Brown gymnastics team begins its defense of the Ivy Classic title Sunday at UNH. The Bears qualified for the USAG Collegiate National Championships last season, marking the first such appearance in school history. Brown will host the national championships this season.

Senior Michelle Shnayder, one of four captains, captured the all-around championship to pace a historic performance for Brown at last season's Ivy Classic title at Yale. Madeline Benz, Rebecca Freedman, Katie Rogers (Bethesda, Md.) and Shnayder have been named captains for the 2014 season.

SCOUTING THE BULLDOGS: It's the season opener for Yale. In last season's Wildcat Invitational, Bulldog gymnast Joyce Li delivered a personal-best on the bars (9.800) to finish fifth, and Brittney Sooksengdao had a career-best on the beam (9.650) to finish 10th, foreshadowing her performance at the ECAC championships, where she won the beam competition.

This meet marks the first chance for Yale's highly touted freshmen to showcase their abilities. Anella Anderson, Kacie Traina, Mitzi Unda-Sosa and Tatiana Winkelman all figure to feature prominently this season.

NEXT UP: The Wildcats hit the road to battle with EAGL rival Pittsburgh at the Fitzgerald Field House on Saturday, Jan. 25. The 1 p.m. meet will be carried live on ESPN3.

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