INDIANAPOLIS – The 23rd-ranked University of New Hampshire gymnastics team was selected Monday to compete as the No. 4 seed at the NCAA University Park Regional Championship, which will be hosted by Penn State University at Rec Hall on Saturday, April 5, at 4 p.m.
New Hampshire (21-4, 13-2 East Atlantic Gymnastics League), which won its second-ever EAGL Championship at the Whittemore Center on March 22 to earn the league's automatic bid, returns to the NCAA Regional Championship for the 31st time in the last 33 years and heads to postseason competition for the 33rd time in head coach Gail Goodspeed's 35 years at the helm.
"This program has a strong history of being at Regionals, and last year we didn't make it as a team," Goodspeed said. "We had some injuries and had some people out that we were counting on. This year they're back in the lineup, and we're 100 percent. This team is just competitive and wants to go in and hit."
The fourth-seeded Wildcats will compete against top-ranked Florida (No. 1 seed), 12th-ranked Oregon State (No. 2 seed), host and 15th-ranked Penn State (No. 3 seed), Kentucky (No. 5 seed) and Maryland (No. 6 seed).
"This team has been so unbelievable and amazing, and I wouldn't want to finish out this season any other way," senior co-captain Hannah Barile (Sinking Spring, Pa.) said.
The top two teams and top two all-around competitors (who are not on an advancing team) from the University Park Regional will advance to the NCAA National Collegiate Women's Gymnastics Championships (April 18-20), hosted by the University of Alabama and the Alabama Sports Foundation.
"We just have to go in and hit 24-for-24; we can't control what the other teams do," Goodspeed said. "We can only control what we do, and I think we can go in and do the job."
"This team has showed whatever barrier is in front of us, we're going to climb over it, so why not shoot for Nationals at this point," Barile said.
For more information on the UNH gymnastics team, visit www.unhwildcats.com.