Champaign, Ill. - The 13th-ranked Nebraska women's gymnastics team clinched a share the Big Ten regular season title following a first-place finish with a score of 196.650 at the B1G Five meet on Saturday at the State Farm Center in Champaign, Ill.
No. 19 Illinois finished second with a score of 196.450, while 24th-ranked Ohio State was third with a score of 195.350. Michigan State placed fourth with a 194.650, while Maryland rounded out the field with a score of 193.375.
With the first-place finish, the Cornhuskers (17-3, 8-1 Big Ten) clinched their first Big Ten regular season championship since the 2014 season. Michigan finished in first place at the B1G Five meet in Iowa City, Iowa, on Saturday, giving the Wolverines an 8-1 conference record and a share of the regular season title. NU's win also placed them in the evening session at next week's Big Ten Championships, which is set to begin at 4 p.m. (CT) on Saturday in Piscataway, N.J.
Jennie Laeng led the way for the Big Red, as she won the all-around title with a career-high score of 39.400. Grace Williams posted Nebraska's highest beam score of the year with a career-high-tying 9.95 on the way to the event title, while Ashley Lambert and Sienna Crouse shared the vault title with Jamie Stone and Olivia Aepli of Ohio State with scores of 9.85.
Mary Jane Horth of Illinois won bars with a 9.95, and Illini gymnast Lizzy LeDuc won floor with a 9.925.
Nebraska began the meet on a bye. After one rotation, Illinois led the field with a score of 49.175 on beam. Ohio State scored a 48.950 on floor, while Maryland posted a 48.850 on bars and Michigan State vaulted to a 48.675.
The Huskers used a trio of 9.90s on floor to post a strong 49.325 on their first event of the day. Danielle Breen tied a career high with her 9.90, while Laeng and Lambert matched with 9.90s of their own. Williams posted a 9.825, while Megan Schweihofer scored a 9.80 for the Big Red.
Ohio State scored a 49.050 on vault, while Michigan State scored a 48.425 on bars and Maryland scored a 47.425 on beam.
NU moved to vault for the third rotation, and scored a solid 49.175. Crouse tied her career high with a 9.85, while Lambert matched with a 9.85 of her own to lead the Huskers. Epperson, Laeng and Schweihofer each scored a 9.825 to aid the Big Red effort.
Illinois posted a strong 49.450 on floor, while Ohio State scored a 48.875 on bars and Michigan State scored a 48.400 on beam.
The Huskers tied a season high with a 49.425 on bars, highlighted by career-high 9.925s from Epperson and Schweihofer. Crouse added a 9.90, while Lambert scored a 9.85 and Breen posted a season-high 9.825.
The Buckeyes finished the afternoon with a 48.475 on beam, while Illinois scored a 48.850 on vault and Maryland scored a 48.425 on floor.
Nebraska wrapped up the meet victory with a 48.725 on beam. Sierra Hassel scored a strong 9.85 in her first-career beam routine to lead things off for the Big Red. After the next two Huskers fell, Laeng (9.875) and Williams (9.95) posted clutch routines, while Breen anchored the Huskers with a 9.80.
Michigan State finished with a 49.150 on floor, while Illinois scored a 48.975 on bars and Maryland scored a 48.675 on vault.
The Huskers will travel to the 2017 Big Ten Championships in Piscataway, N.J., next Saturday. NU is set to compete in the 4 p.m. session, which will be televised on Big Ten Network and streamed live on BTN2Go.
- Nebraska won its second Big Ten regular-season title since joining the conference before the 2012 season (NU went 6-1 to share the 2014 Big Ten regular season championship)
- Nebraska's score of 49.425 on bars tied a season high (vs. Penn State, Jan. 15)
- Danielle Breen tied a career high and set a new season high with a 9.90 on floor, a mark she previously hit at last season's B1G Five meet
- Breen tied a season high with a 9.825 on bars
- Sienna Crouse tied a career high and a season high with a score of 9.85 on vault
- Abbie Epperson set a new career high with a 9.925 on bars
- Epperson set a new season high with a 38.700 in the all-around and tied a season high with a 9.825 on vault
- Sierra Hassel scored a 9.85 in her first-career beam routine
- Jennie Laeng set a new career high with a 39.400 in the all-around and a new season high with a 9.875 on beam
- Megan Schweihofer set a new career high with a 9.925 on bars
- Grace Williams tied a career high and set a new season high with a 9.95 on beam, Nebraska's highest beam score of the season
- Williams scored a 9.775 in her first vault of the season