- Current Team Record: 10-1 (3-0 Big Ten)
- 2012 High Score: 197.375 (Denver, 1/13/12)
- 2011 NCAA Finish: 4th (196.725)
Fresh off its second upset over a top-10 opponent on the road, the No. 6 Nebraska women's gymnastics team returns to action this Sunday, March 4, when they host the No. 1 Florida Gators at the Bob Devaney Sports Center. Action from the Devaney Center is set to begin at 2 p.m. and will be run in conjunction with the men's gymnastics team as they take on Arizona State.
Live stats for Sunday's meet will be available on Huskers.com, while a live video stream will be provided on Huskers Inside (subscription required). You can also follow the women's gymnastics Twitter feed for scores at www.twitter.com/HuskersWGYM, and be sure to become a fan of the gymnastics squad on their Facebook page at www.facebook.com/NebraskaWGym.
The Huskers, who defeated No. 8 Arkansas on the road last weekend, own a 10-1 record and are 4-1 when competing at home. The last time the Huskers took on the top-ranked team in the country at home was on Friday, Feb. 13, 2009 when they fell to the Utah Utes. The Huskers defeated No. 1 Utah in Lincoln in 2005 for their last victory over a No. 1 team. Nebraska is coming off one of its most impressive performances of the season after they took down Arkansas on the road by posting a 197.00, which was the ninth-highest away meet score in school history. Florida head coach Rhonda Faehn will return to Lincoln after serving as an assistant coach for the Huskers from 1999 to 2002.
After their meet against Florida, the Huskers will travel to Salt Lake City, Utah, to take on No. 7 Utah on Friday, March 9 at 8 p.m.
Promotion: Pepsi Pack-the-House Day
Sunday's meet is Pepsi Pack-the-House Day at the Devaney Center as we try to pack the stands with Husker fans. Admission to the meet will be only $1, while 24oz Pepsi Products will also only be $1 for the entire meet. Students can get in free by showing their student ID at the door.
Scouting the Competition: No. 1 Florida
- Head Coach: Rhonda Faehn (10th season)
- 2012 Record: 9-1 (5-1 SEC)
- 2012 High Score: 197.850 (LSU, 2/10/12)
- 2011 NCAA Finish: NCAA Semifinal (4th, 196.125)
A Glance at the Gators...
- The Florida Gators have held the top spot in the national rankings for the past two weeks and own a 197.195 regional qualifying score as a team. The Gators are coming off a victory over Georgia in their last competition, defeating the Bulldogs 197.525-196.825.
- Florida ranks inside the top 10 on all four events, including holding the top spot on bars with an RQS of 49.335. UF is No. 2 on beam (49.315) and No. 3 on floor (49.215). The Gators are ranked No. 6 on vault (49.30).
- Florida features two gymnasts ranked inside the top 10 in the all-around standings. Ashane'e Dickerson is the No. 7 all-arounder in the country with 39.38 RQS, while Marissa King is at No. 10 with a 39.305.
- The Gators feature eight gymnasts ranked inside the top 10 at their respective events: Vault-No. 5 Kytra Hunter (9.910); Uneven Bars-No. 3 Alaina Johnson (9.89), No. 5 Marissa King (9.885); Balance Beam-No. 2 Marissa King (9.905), No. 10 Kytra Hunter (9.87), No. 10 Ashane'e Dickerson (9.87); Floor- No. 5 Kytra Hunter (9.895), No. 5 Ashane'e Dickerson (9.895).
- Florida is coached by Rhonda Faehn, who is in her 10th season as coach of the Gators. Faehn was previously an assistant coach at Nebraska from 1999-02. She has led Florida to six top-five finishes at the NCAA Championships.
- The Huskers trail in the all-time series between the two schools, 10-20. The last time NU and UF competed against each other was last season when the Huskers defeated Florida at the NCAA semifinals, 196.85-196.125.
Nebraska's Competition Order vs. Florida
Rotation Florida Nebraska
1 Uneven Bars Vault
2 Vault Uneven Bars
3 Floor Exercise Balance Beam
4 Balance Beam Floor Exercise
Last Time Out: Clutch Beam Performance Leads NU Past No. 7 Arkansas
The Nebraska women's gymnastics team posted the ninth-highest away meet score in school history and captured three event titles in its 197.000-196.300 upset of the No. 7 Arkansas Razorbacks on Friday, Feb. 24, in Fayetteville, Ark.
Junior Janelle Giblin won the vault title for the fifth time this season and second time in a row with a 9.95, while Giblin, Lora Evenstand and Emily Wong all tied for the bars title. Wong also won the beam title with a 9.90. Arkansas' Jaime Pisani won the all-around with a score of 39.525. Emily Wong finished in second in the all-around with a career high 39.50, while DeZiel finished in third with a 39.225.
With a slim 147.725-147.275 lead heading into the Huskers' final event on beam, NU posted three career high scores to hold off the Razorbacks. True freshman Jennifer Lauer led the event off with a career best 9.875. After a fall from Brittany Skinner in the second routine, NU reeled off four routines in row which totaled higher than 9.80 to lead them to victory. Giblin and Schleppenbach both tied their career highs with 9.85s, while Wong posted a 9.90 and DeZiel scored a 9.80.
The Huskers overcame a fall on one routine on the bars to finish the event with an overall score of 49.10 in the first rotation. NU was led by Wong, who scored a season-high 9.875 to kick the Huskers off. Giblin and Evenstad both matched Wong with 9.875s, while DeZiel started her night off with a 9.725. Giblin's score marked only the second time the No. 1 ranked junior hasn't scored a 9.90 this season. Skinner posted a 9.75 to round out the Huskers' action on the bars.
Nebraska recorded two career highs on vault and reclaimed the lead after the second rotation at 98.525-98.425. Skinner posted NU's first score with her career high 9.925, while Giblin had a 9.95 for the second straight week, which is also a career high, en route to capturing the event title. Wong scored her second 9.875 of the night, while Schleppenbach put up a 9.85 and DeZiel finished the event off with a 9.825.
After reclaiming the lead on the vault, NU was able hold onto the lead after a pair of clutch performances in its last two routines from DeZiel and Evenstad on floor. Evenstad posted a team-high 9.90 in the last routine, after DeZiel scored a 9.875. Wong put up a 9.85, while Schleppenbach and Skinner posted scores of 9.775 and 9.80, respectively, to begin the Husker event.
Lauer Steps Up Big for Huskers on Beam
True freshman Jennifer Lauer has stepped up in a big way to help the Huskers find consistency on beam. Lauer was instrumental in the Huskers' victory over Arkansas last week, when she led the event off with a career-high 9.875. Lauer has competed on beam the last two meets, posting a 9.75 in Nebraska's win against Minnesota on Feb. 18. Nebraska will continue to look to the Sioux City, Iowa, native to make an impact in her first season.
DeZiel's Big Ten Awards Streak Ends
True freshman Jessie DeZiel saw her streak of Big Ten Freshman of the Week awards come to an end this week, after dominating the award for a record six consecutive weeks. During that span, which stretched from Jan. 16 to Feb. 20, DeZiel captured nine event titles and won the all-around five times.
The Rogers, Minn., native also won Big Ten Gymnast of the Week twice, first on Jan. 16 and the second time coming on Feb. 20.
Giblin Dominating on Bars
Junior Janelle Giblin has been dominant on the uneven bars so far this season, scoring a 9.85 or above in all seven meets. Giblin has posted five 9.90s to help her earn five event titles, before scoring 9.875 against Arkansas, which was also good enough to win the event title. She is currently the No. 2 bars performer in the country with an RQS of 9.895.
Huskers in the Rankings
The Huskers jumped three spots to No. 6 in the latest GymInfo national women's gymnastics rankings, which were released on Monday, Feb. 27. The Huskers are the only Big Ten squad in the top 10 and sport a regional qualifying score of 196.585.
The Florida Gators are the top-ranked team in the country, followed by Oklahoma, UCLA, Georgia and Alabama to round out the top five. The Huskers defeated No. 2 Oklahoma on the road earlier this season, which was their first of two victories over top 10 opponents on the road so far this year.
The Huskers are ranked inside the top 15 on all four events as a team and feature two all-arounders ranked inside the top 10. On vault, NU checks in at No. 3 with an RQS of 49.365 and is No. 4 on the floor (49.180). The Huskers are the sixth-best bars (49.190) squad in the country and continue to climb the rankings on beam (48.88), where they are currently at No. 14.
True freshman Jessie DeZiel and sophomore Emily Wong are two of the top all-around performers in the country. DeZiel is currently ranked as the No. 2 all-arounder in the nation with a 39.460 RQS, while Wong isn't far behind at No. 6 with a 39.39. DeZiel ranks inside the top 15 on vault (11th, 9.895), beam (13th, 9.855) and floor (12th, 9.875), while Wong is No. 20 on vault (9.875), No. 22 on beam (9.840) and No. 18 on floor (9.855).
Junior Janelle Giblin continues to be one of the top bar performers in the country, where she is ranked at No. 2 in the latest rankings. Gibiln, who won her sixth bars title of the year against Arkansas, has a 9.895 RQS. Senior Lora Evenstad ranks inside the top 10 on bars (6th, 9.88) and floor (4th, 9.90), while sophomore Jamie Schleppenbach cracked the rankings at No. 25 on vault with a 9.865.
Huskers Finding Consistency on Beam
After struggling on beam against the Missouri Tigers on Jan. 28, the Huskers have continued to improve on the event by posting a 49.00 or above in three of their last four meets. The Huskers have climbed back to No. 14 in the national beam rankings after falling to No. 25 after posting a 46.95 against the Tigers. Last week, NU posted a 49.275, which was its second highest beam score of the season after posting a 49.35 in the opening competition against Denver.
The Huskers are led on beam by Jessie DeZiel and Emily Wong, who have won three and two titles on the event this season, respectively. DeZiel is ranked at No. 13 on the event with an RQS of 9.855, while Wong checks in at No. 22 with a 9.84.
Big Ten Network to Show Huskers
The Nebraska women's gymnastics team will appear on the Big Ten Network one more time during the regular season when the Huskers take on the Iowa State Cyclones on Friday, March 16 at 7 p.m. at the Devaney Center. The meet will air on tape delay on Saturday, March 17. The Huskers' victory over the Minnesota Gophers on Feb. 18 was the other meet to be televised this season.
The first session of this year's Big Ten Championships on March 24 will be televised on the same day at 6 p.m., and the second session will air live. The championships are being held in Iowa City, Iowa.
Huskers Competing Against Nation's Best
Including their meet against Florida this week, the Huskers will have competed against three teams currently ranked inside the top 10 of the national poll so far this season. The Huskers own a 2-0 record in those meets, with both of the wins coming on the road against No. 5 Oklahoma and No. 7 Arkansas.
Nebraska will take on current-No. 7 Utah on the road next weekend on Friday, March 9 at 8 p.m. in Salt Lake City, Utah.
Huskers Set to Host Alumni Weekend March 3-4
The Nebraska women's gymnastics program is hosting its annual Alumni Weekend on Saturday and Sunday. The Huskers will take on the Gators on Sunday, March 4 at 2 p.m. from the Devaney Center, while Alumni Weekend activities will take place on Saturday and Sunday leading up to the meet.
Former Huskers will have the chance to tour all of Nebraska's state-of-the-art facilities, including the new Hendricks Training Facility and the women's gymnastics gym at Mabel Lee Hall. Alumni will also have a chance to view a Husker practice on Saturday, before an alumni social event at 6:30 p.m. at The Nebraska Club.
Huskers Post Six All-Around Scores at Masters Classic
For the first time in his 18-plus seasons at Nebraska, Head Coach Dan Kendig had all six gymnasts compete in the all-around when the Huskers took on Washington, Michigan and Southern Utah at the Masters Classic on Feb. 11. Jessie DeZiel, Lora Evenstad, Janelle Giblin, Jamie Schleppenbach, Brittany Skinner and Emily Wong all competed in the all-around, while DeZiel took home the crown with a 39.45. Nebraska finished with the top three spots in the all-around, with Wong finishing in second with a 39.375 and Skinner taking home third place with a career-high 39.35.
Kendig Builds One of Nation's Top Programs at Nebraska
Head Coach Dan Kendig is the all-time winningest coach in the 35 years of Nebraska women's gymnastics history. In 18 seasons at Nebraska, Kendig is 426-164-4 overall and 289-67-2 in regular-season meets. Kendig is in his 29th year of coaching and owns a career record of 536-276-5.
An eight-time Big 12 Conference Coach of the Year, Kendig has guided the Huskers to 12 conference championships and three straight regional championships from 2000 to 2002. He was most recently named the 2009 Big 12 Coach of the Year.
He has also led Nebraska to 14 NCAA Championship appearances in the past 17 seasons, including NCAA Super Six Finals appearances in 1997, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2011. Kendig was honored as the NCAA Coach of the Year in 1999 and 2003, a year in which the Huskers finished fourth nationally.
Under Kendig's guidance in 2011, Nebraska finished with a 22-12 overall record. The Huskers took fourth at the 2011 NCAA Championships in Cleveland, Ohio, in their 28th straight NCAA postseason appearance, which tied for the highest finish in school history. Five of Kendig's gymnasts --Lora Evenstad (FX), Brittany Skinner (BB), Janelle Giblin (V, AA), Jamie Schleppenbach (V) and Emily Wong (UB) -- earned All-America honors.
All-Americans Ready to Lead Huskers
The Huskers return six All-Americans off a squad that tied the best finish in school history a year ago. Lora Evenstad, Janelle Giblin, Kassandra Nathe, Brittany Skinner, Jamie Schleppenbach and Emily Wong have all earned All-America honors in their careers. In perhaps its deepest event, NU returns four All-Americans on vault, including 2011 first-team honorees Giblin and Schleppenbach. The Huskers return three All-Americans on uneven bars and All-American on both floor and beam.
The Huskers will be without Nathe, who was lost before the season with an ankle injury. It is the second consecutive season Nathe has been lost to injury after sitting out last year with a hurt arm.
Miller, Brink Join Coaching Staff
Assistant coaches Dan Miller and Heather Brink began their college coaching careers when the Huskers took Denver after being hired this offseason. Brink will coach the balance beam, while also assisting with choreography on the floor exercises. Brink was an 11-time All-American at NU and became a two-time national champion in 2000 by winning the all-around and vault title as a senior.
Miller comes to Nebraska after serving as the owner and head coach at Arena Gymnastics in Joliet, Ill. Miller will coach the Husker vault and floor squads. In his career, Miller has coached over 50 Level 10 gymnasts and 16 national qualifiers.