Jan. 31, 2011
MICHIGAN HITS THE ROAD FOR A DUAL IN NEW HAMPSHIRE
Saturday, Feb. 5, 4 p.m. -- vs. New Hampshire (Durham, N.H.)
The ninth-ranked University of Michigan women's gymnastics team (8-1, 4-1 Big Ten) hits the halfway mark of the regular season with a road trip to New Hampshire to take on the Wildcats on Saturday (Feb. 5) at 4 p.m. in Lundholm Gymnasium in Durham, N.H. New Hampshire is 4-2 on the season and listed 31st in the latest GymInfo poll with a seaso-high score of 194.500 in the season opener against Rutgers. The Wildcats are a perfect 2-0 at home this season.
Michigan is 8-1 all-time against New Hampshire, losing the first meeting between the two programs way back in 1987 but winning the last eight meetings between 2000 and 2007. The programs have not met in four years but resume their series this weekend. Michigan is 2-1 all-time in Durham, N.H., with a first-place showing at the Fox Run Invitational on Feb. 12, 2005, where Michigan defeated Michigan State, Northern Illinois and the host Wildcats.
The Wolverines are undefeated at home this year with a perfect 5-0 mark but are 0-1 outside the state of Michigan with a loss at Iowa on Jan. 22.
THE MICHIGAN WOMEN'S GYMNASTICS RUNDOWN
Botterman Three for Four in Big Ten Gymnast of the Week Honors
Senior Kylee Botterman earned her third Big Ten Gymnast of the Week award after winning four individual events at the Michigan Quad on Jan. 29 and helping U-M post its highest team score of the season. Botterman's three weekly honors in 2011 give her five in her career -- tied for fourth on U-M's all-time list. Four Wolverines have previously captured three weekly awards in a single season (Lindsey Bruck, Elise Ray, Calli Ryals and Tatjana Thuener-Rego) and only one Wolverine (Bruck) has earned four weekly awards in a single season. Ray and Bruck are tied for first place all-time in program history with nine weekly honors apiece.
Botterman, Beilstein and Sexton Among the NCAAs Best and Brightest
Senior Kylee Botterman is among the top 15 gymnasts in the nation in all four events and in the all-around competition through four meets, while fifth-year senior teammate Jordan Sexton, sophomore Natalie Beilstein and freshman Reema Zakharia are among the nation's best on single events.
Botterman ranks fourth on vault (9.900), ninth on bars (9.856), eighth on beam (9.844) and 14th on floor (9.865) while coming in at third in the all-around (39.456). Zakharia is fifth on floor (9.875), Sexton is 12th on bars (9.844) and Beilstein is 13th on vault (9.869) through four meets.
In three weeks, the national rankings will shift from season average to regional qualifying scores (RQS), which take into account home and away scores as well as statistical outliers.
Michigan Freshmen Starting to Show Their Stuff
Michigan's largest incoming class of freshmen in 20 years is starting to make an impact in the lineup as the season progresses. Freshman Reema Zakharia ranks fifth in the nation on floor after her first collegiate performance netted a 9.875 last week at the Michigan Quad. Fellow Wolverine Shelby Gies has competed on bars and beam in all four meets, posting three top-five finishes and taking third on beam with a season-best 9.800 at the Michigan Quad. Stephanie Colbert has contributed on vault and floor, taking runner-up honors with a 9.900 vault against Penn State and Illinois, while Joanna Sampson has seen time on vault, beam and floor, earning fourth place on vault at Iowa and fifth on beam at the Michigan Quad.
Botterman is the Mayor of Title Town
Senior Kylee Botterman should be able to open her own flower shop soon with the number of bouquets she has received this season for winning individual event awards through four meets. Botterman has 13 individual titles out of 25 potential wins this year. So far, Botterman has four all-around wins, three victories on vault, three wins on beam, two wins on floor and one win on bars.
She has captured the all-around crown in all four meets she has competed in and has finished outside the top three in an event just once this year (a fourth-place showing on beam at Iowa). Botterman's haul in 2011 gives her a whopping 62 titles in her collegiate career.
If You Think We're Good Now...
Nearing the midway point of the year, Michigan has had a solid season, but two key ingredients will be added to the lineup in the coming weeks that will make the Wolverines even more formidable. All-America sophomore Brittnee Martinez has been sidelined so far and should return to the lineup soon, while former NCAA regional uneven bars champion Trish Wilson may be inserted into the lineup late this month, giving Michigan a national-title worthy routine on bars.
Speaking of Trish Wilson ...
Check out a feature on senior captain Trish Wilson and her decision to return to college gymnastics following her fourth major knee surgery. The big question is "WHY"? Find out by reading the feature in M Magazine.
Bev Plocki's March to Win #575
Head coach Bev Plocki earned her 550th career victory against Illinois and Penn State on Jan. 14 and could reach win No. 575 if the Wolverines make a run at the Super Six. Plocki is third on U-M's list of active coaches with the most career wins, trailing hockey coach Red Berenson and softball coach Carol Hutchins. In her 22nd season at the helm, Plocki has 18 20-win campaigns, seven 30-win seasons and back-to-back 36-win seasons in 1994 and 1995 -- her best showing with the Wolverines.
Michigan vs. Alabama on the Big Ten Network
Michigan and Alabama will clash on national TV on the Big Ten Network on Friday, March 4, at 7 p.m. from Crisler Arena. The meet will air on the network on Sunday, March 13, at 2 p.m.
Get Your Tickets TODAY!
Tickets to all Michigan women's gymnastics meets are available through the U-M ticket office for just $5 for adults and $3 for kids. Catch top-flight gymnastics all season long with visiting national powers Nebraska (Feb. 13), Stanford (Feb. 13), Oklahoma (Feb. 26) and Alabama (March 4) paying a visit to Crisler. Go to MGoBlue.com/tickets or call 734-764-0247 and see what all the fun is about!
The All-Around: The Official Podcast of Michigan Women's Gymnastics
The official podcast of the Michigan women's gymnastics team "The All-Around" is in its second season and it is better than ever! Listen to it in the All-Access player on MGoBlue.com and in the MGoBlue.com Podcast Center for download to your iPod or MP3 player. Check back every Thursday for a new episode.
Last week, fifth-year senior Jordan Sexton talked about her involvement with Mock Rock, how she is approaching her final season of gymnastics and what her plans are after she graduates. Senior Kylee Botterman is due up on the podcast this Thursday. Download it to hear what we will be asking Kylee in The All-Around!
The Michigan Women's Gymnastics Yearbook is Online
Check out the brand new Michigan women's gymnastics yearbook. The fully interactive online publication features the athletes and coaches, Crisler Arena, the Donald R. Shepherd Gymnastics Training Facility and covers the storied history of Michigan women's gymnastics.
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Contact: Richard Retyi (734) 763-4423