|Austyn Fobes, Becca Marrama, Courtney Connors, Jen Aucoin|
New Hampshire (10-5) vs Brown (6-8), Towson (7-10), Yale (3-10)
Senior Day • UNH Invitational
March 2, 2013 • 4:00 p.m. • Lundholm Gymnasium • Durham, N.H.
Live Stats: http://www.unhwildcats.com/sports/gymnastics/2012-13/files/20130302.htm
Video Commentary: Dianna Kurowyckyj
DURHAM, N.H. – The University of New Hampshire gymnastics team wraps up the home portion of its schedule with the annual UNH Invitational and Senior Day on Saturday, March 2, at 4 p.m. in a quad-meet against Brown, Towson and Yale at Lundholm Gymnasium.
LAST TIME OUT – MORGANTOWN, W. Va. (Feb. 24) - Kayla Gray set career highs on vault, floor exercise and all-around, matched her personal best uneven-bar score and registered a team-leading balance beam mark to lead UNH to third place Sunday afternoon at West Virginia's Wendy M. Roach Invitational Quad-Meet.
The Wildcats compiled their largest road score of the season with a 194.875 to defeat EAGL rival Towson, which scored a 193.150. Third-ranked Michigan won the meet with a 196.925, while No. 25 West Virginia tallied a 196.550 for second place.
UNH had the difficult assignment of starting the meet on beam, but the 'Cats kept their composure in the nerve-wracking event to score a 48.650. Gray set the tone with a 9.850, earning a share of third place in the process. Jannelle Minichiello hit for a season-best 9.725, which matched teammate Austyn Fobes for 14th place.
The Wildcats roared back in the second rotation by notching their top floor exercise score of the season, a 49.225. Gray and Erika Rudiger set career highs and Hannah Barile matched her personal best with tying marks of 9.875, part of a five-way deadlock for fifth place.
In the third rotation Barile stuck her vault for a personal-best and team-high 9.825, which secured a share of ninth place. Fobes earned a 9.775 to tie for 13th place, and Gray made it two straight career-high events with a 9.725 (16th place). The 'Cats hit 6-for-6 on their powerful vault routines to score a 48.725. Zurales recorded a 9.925 for first place.
Gray followed up her back-to-back personal bests by matching her career-high bar score with a 9.800 to share fifth place. Fobes complemented that effort with a 9.775 (T-8th), and Minichiello's 9.725 was good for 13th place, helping UNH score a 48.275. Michigan's Joanna Sampson took the gold with a 9.875.
Gray finished in second place courtesy of her career-high 39.250 all-around score, which was just one-tenth behind all-around champion Millick.
GRADE A GRAY – Kayla Gray has been named the East Atlantic Gymnastics League (EAGL) Gymnast of the Week, the league announced Tuesday.
Gray, a sophomore, set career highs on vault (9.725), floor exercise (9.875) and all-around (39.250), matched her personal best uneven-bar score (9.800) and registered a team-leading mark on balance beam (9.850) to lead the Wildcats to third place Sunday afternoon at West Virginia's Wendy M. Roach Invitational Quad-Meet.
Gray, EAGL's fourth-ranked gymnast on balance beam with a Regional Qualifying Score (RQS) of 9.770, wins her first weekly league award of the season and second of her career; the native of Buffalo, N.Y., was previously feted as the EAGL Rookie of the Week on Feb. 14, 2012. Gray went on to earn 2012 All-EAGL First Team on beam, All-Tournament First Team on beam and Second Team on floor to go along with EAGL All-Academic Team and NACGC/W Scholastic All-America accolades.
Gray becomes the third Wildcat gymnast to earn an EAGL award this season, joining Austyn Fobes, who was twice named the EAGL Gymnast of the Week, and Hannah Barile, who won the EAGL Specialist of the Week award Jan. 8.
SCOUTING THE BEARS – Junior Michelle Shnayder paced a historic performance for Brown gymnastics, capturing the all-around championship in leading the Bears to their first Ivy Classic title since 1990 Saturday afternoon at the John J. Amphitheater at Yale University. The Bears tallied a 193.925, while Cornell (193.025), Penn (191.600) and Yale (191.100) finished second through fourth, respectively.
Brown's team total is a season-high and the tournament victory is the first of the season through six events.
Shnayder's best individual event finish came on the vault, where she finished second with a 9.825, tying a career high. She was tied for sixth on the beam at 9.750, tied for seventh on the floor at 9.675 and was tied for 13th on the bars at 9.600.
Senior Emily Lutfey took home the vault title, posting a career-high 9.850. Lutfey and Shnayder's 1-2 vault performance was one of three different events where Brown placed two finishers in the top four. In addition, sophomore Allison Rubenstein and senior Julia Meyer tied for second on the beam a career-high 9.825. Senior Nicole Abdo was Brown's top finisher on the floor, also notching a career-high with a second-place 9.800. Lutfey was fourth with a 9.775.
Rubenstein and Meyer were two of seven Bears who finished in the top 12 on the beam, leading to a school record 48.900 combined score for the event.
SCOUTING THE TIGERS – Towson is on the road for the second week in a row. This will be the third time this year that the Tigers are competing against the Wildcats. Towson also faced UNH in a meet at North Carolina State and last week's meet at West Virginia University.
Freshmen Abby Griswold and Katie Sassa continue to have impressive freshman seasons. Griswold has competed as an all-arounder for the last few meets, and she had a career high 38.80 score at West Virginia last week. Two weeks ago, she was the East Atlantic Gymnastics League Rookie of the Week after leading the Tigers to a first place finish at the Shelli Calloway Memorial Towson Invitational. Sassa has been a standout on vault and floor this season. She is averaging 9.80 on vault and 9.711 on floor exercise this season.
Junior Alexa Davis has been making progress every week. The 2011 ECAC Rookie of the Week is averaging 9.55 on bars, 9.64 on beam and 9.71 on floor as she continues to recover from elbow problems.
SCOUTING THE BULLDOGS- Yale, which has scored over 190.000 in its last three meets, seeks to continue that trend this weekend. Last Saturday, the Bulldogs hosted the Ivy Classic and finished fourth with a score of 191.100. Brown won the event with a 193.925, Cornell was second with a 193.025 and two-time defending Ivy champion Penn finished in third with a 191.600.
On their home turf, the Yale gymnasts delivered a number of impressive performances, led by senior Tara Feld, who won the Ivy championship on the floor exercise, pacing the field with a score of 9.825. Senior bars specialist Lindsay Andsager also performed extremely well, tying for second on the bars with a 9.800. Sophomores Joyce Li and Morgan Traina each had excellent days for the Bulldogs, finishing third and fifth, respectively, in the all-around event.
This will be Yale's second meet at New Hampshire this year, having competed against UNH in a tri-meet on February third.
SALUTING THE SENIORS:
Jen Aucoin, a co-captain, looks to conclude her home career on a positive note. The Mullica Hill, N.J., native has been a consistent leader in the uneven bar lineup with a 9.690 RQS, an average of 9.681 and a high of 9.875. She also performs on balance beam, where she boasts a 9.665 RQS, a 9.541 average and a season-best 9.80. Aucoin, a two-time member of the EAGL All-Academic Team, was named to the EAGL All-Tournament First Team on bars in 2011 and Second Team in 2012.
Courtney Connors, a two-time co-captain, has been in the vault lineup for each meet of her senior campaign. The native of Buffalo, N.Y., owns a 9.735 vault RQS, a 9.725 average and a season-high 9.800. Courtney, the recipient of UNH's Most Inspirational Award last season, is a three-time NACGC/W Scholastic All-American and a three-year competitor at NCAA Regionals.
Austyn Fobes has been named the EAGL Gymnast of the Week twice (Jan. 8, Jan. 29) and is EAGL's third-ranked gymnast in all-around (38.945 RQS) and uneven bars (9.800 RQS).
As a junior in 2012, Fobes was named to the EAGL All-Tournament First Team on floor exercise after finishing in a tie for second place at the EAGL Championship; she added an All-Tournament Second Team selection in all-around. Fobes was All-EAGL First Team on bars.
During her sophomore campaign in 2011, Fobes was tabbed to the EAGL All-Tournament First Team on uneven bars (tied for second) and all-around (tied for fifth). Austyn earned All-EAGL First Team honors on floor and AA and Second Team on bars.
In her 2010 freshman season, Fobes secured berths on the EAGL All-Tournament First Team on vault and Second Team on floor.
Becca Marrama, a four-year member of the Wildcats, has earned a slot in the vault lineup during her senior season. The Lynnfield, Mass., native has twice hit for a personal best 9.525, including last weekend's meet against No. 3 Michigan, No. 25 West Virginia and Towson.