Weekly #9: Michigan Wraps Big Ten Regular Season at Penn State

March 2, 2010

Sunday, March 7 -- at No. 17 Penn State (State College, Pa.), 2 p.m.
Live Results | Video Preview

Coming off two of its strongest weeks of the season, the newly minted No. 12-ranked University of Michigan women's gymnastics team (10-1, 4-0 Big Ten) looks to make it a regular-season sweep of the Big Ten when it travels to No. 17 Penn State (10-4, 3-2 Big Ten) to face the Nittany Lions on Sunday (March 7) at 2 p.m. at Rec Hall. The Wolverines are scorching hot, coming off an upset over No. 5 Utah and a season-best 196.775 score at Illinois last week, while Penn State is coming off a tough performance at Ohio State, where the Lions scored 193.850 and took their second Big Ten loss.

History favors the Wolverines, who look to extend their Big Ten win streak over conference opponents to 33 and hold a 25-4 advantage over Penn State in the all-time series. It was Penn State, however, that handed Michigan its last Big Ten loss way back on Feb. 16, 2007.

Two of the Big Ten's top all-arounders will clash for the fifth time in their careers when junior Kylee Botterman and senior Brandi Personett match skills in all four events. Personett and Botterman rank one-two respectively in the all-around, while Botterman is the Big Ten's best uneven bars performer and ranks third on vault and floor. Botterman is the reigning Big Ten Gymnast of the Week, while Personett has earned the honor five times this season. Botterman's Wolverines have never lost to Personett's Lions.

Freshman Natalie Beilstein continues her stellar debut campaign, bringing her five Big Ten Freshman of the Week laurels to her home state to compete before her family and friends. The Butler, Pa., native is third in the Big Ten on vault and fourth on floor this season.


Three Years of Perfection Put to the Test
Michigan has not lost to a Big Ten opponent since February 16, 2007 (vs. Penn State) -- over three years of perfection. U-M has picked up 32 straight Big Ten wins over that span.

The First 10.0 Score in Six Years
Junior Kylee Botterman posted Michigan's first 10.0 score since 2004 when she nailed a perfect score on vault at Illinois (Feb. 27). The last 10.0 score was posted by Elise Ray on bars at the 2004 Big Ten Championships.

The Highest All-Around Score in Six Years
Junior Kylee Botterman also posted Michigan's best all-around score in six years with a 39.675 at Illinois (Feb. 27). It tied for the 13th-highest all-around socre in the history of Michigan women's gymnastics. The last all-around score that was higher was set by Elise Ray at the 2004 Big Ten Championships (39.800).

Sweeping the Weekly Awards
Michigan athletes swept the weekly awards this week with junior Kylee Botterman earning Big Ten Gymnast of the Week and freshman Brittnee Martinez earning Big Ten Freshman of the Week honors. The awards were the first for both gymnasts.

Big Ten Freshman of the Year?
Freshman Natalie Beilstein has won five Big Ten Freshman of the Week honors in seven weeks of competition. She has captured four vault titles and three floor crowns in her first collegiate campaign.

Michigan Versus the SEC
Michigan will wrap the season against two of the top three teams in the SEC, hosting five-time defending national champions and No. 5 Georgia before ending the regular season at No. 1 Alabama. The SEC has five teams in the top 10 this week and all seven are among the top 16.

Bev Plocki a Regular on the Michigan Insider on Sports Talk 1050 WTKA
Head coach Bev Plocki makes regular appearances every Friday morning at 8:40 a.m. on the Michigan Insider with Sam Webb and Ira Weintraub on Sports Talk 1050 WTKA. Listen on your radio, online or check out the podcast later in the day.

The All-Around: The Official Podcast of Michigan Women's Gymnastics
"The All-Around" is live in the All-Access Player on MGoBlue.com and in the MGoBlue.com Podcast Center for download to your iPod or MP3 player. The All-Around is a fast-paced interview with U-M coaches and athletes covering life on and off the competition floor. Check back every Tuesday for a new episode.

In the 10th episode of The All-Around, junior Taylor Zondervan talks about her heroic moment facing Penn State last year, Michigan's Big Ten win streak and what she's doing for her Spring Break. Listen here. [ Full Episode ]

Maureen Moody in M Magazine: Read the touching story of Maureen Moody and her father in "One Final Season" available in the latest issue of "M" Magazine. The feature is about the relationship between a father and daughter and the special bond they shared through gymnastics. [ Read it today ]

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. [ Check it out today! ]

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Follow the Michigan women's gymnastics program all season long on Twitter and Facebook. Receive news, updates and exclusive links on your computer or mobile device.

Contact: Richard Retyi (734) 763-4423

»  Learn about 2017 Michigan women's gymnastics ticket opportunities.