PISCATAWAY, N.J. (January 25, 2012) – After back-to-back weekends on the road, Rutgers University gymnastics returns home to the Livingston Recreation Center to host Southern Connecticut State University, Temple University and Ursinus College on Saturday at 1 p.m. in a quad meet. All three opponents are members of the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC).
“We are excited to be returning home this weekend,” said first-year head coach Louis Levine. “I believe we have been progressing each week, getting better individually and as a team. We need to continue improving in order to come away with satisfactory results on Saturday.”
Last time out, Rutgers (0-3) dropped a heartbreaker by .050 to UPenn, 191.975-191.925, in Philadelphia. Junior Danielle D’Elia (Colts Neck, N.J.) won the meet all-around title with a career-high score of 38.800, including top finishes in the floor exercise (9.750) and uneven bars (9.775). The Scarlet Knights scored best on the floor exercise (48.250), taking four of the top five spots with D’Elia and sophomore Alexis Gunzelman (Tabernacle, N.J.) tying for first at 9.750.
Southern Connecticut State (2-2) is coming off a second-place finish (188.825) in a quad meet held at Springfield College last Sunday that also included Yale and SUNY-Brockport. Sophomore Kirby Pallis and junior Rebecca Brady set school records in the meet with scores of 9.8 on the uneven bars and 9.825 on the vault, respectively. This will be the third-straight season that the Owls have traveled to Piscataway, with RU taking the meet 194.350-187.825 in 2011 and 190.875-188.850 in 2010. SCSU last defeated RU in 2009 (189.425-188.275) in a neutral meet at Towson University in a series that dates back to 1978 (RU leads 19-10). Head coach Jerry Nelson is in his eighth season at the helm of the program.
Temple (2-5), led by sixth-year head coach Aaron Murphy, took first place at tri-meet at Ursinus with Ithaca on Sunday afternoon with a score of 185.975. Graduate student Kate Canning returned from injury to win the meet all-around title (38.275). The Owls secured the top spot in all events, including the top five spots in the floor exercise. This will be the 45th meeting all-time between Rutgers and Temple (RU leads 27-17) in a series that started in 1979, with RU taking 14 of the last 17 meets going back to 2003. The Scarlet Knights won 191.725-189.625 last season at the Lindsey Ferris Invitational at George Washington University.
Ursinus (2-4) finished third last weekend in a home tri-meet with Temple and Ithaca (180.350). The Bears scored best on the floor exercise with a mark of 46.150. Freshman Kristin Aichele paced the team with a third-place finish on vault (9.500). The Scarlet Knights have taken all 28 gatherings in a series that commenced in 1978, with the last 12 coming in Piscataway. UC is led by veteran coach Jeff Schepers.
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