WASHINGTON, D.C. - Gymnastics got the 2012 season off to a quick start, posting a 189.025 in its very first meet of the season to finish third overall at the Lindsey Ferris Invitational. Only North Carolina and the host George Washington outscored Penn on the day. The Quakers finished first out of all the ECAC teams as they just edged Cornell, the ECAC Champions from 2011, by less than one-tenth of a point.
Along with many individual highlights on each of the four events, Penn scored 48.250 on the vault to pace its performance. This score on the vault was the best of all six teams that competed, including nationally-ranked North Carolina. This scorealso bests any of theQuakers' team highs in this event last season by over two-tenths of a point.
Despite fielding a very competitive team with all the returnees from last season's Ivy Classic championship team, five freshmen made their collegiate debuts at the Lindsey Ferris Invitational and all five look like seasoned veterans throughout the competition.
Leading the way on the vault was seniorLaura DiPaolo who scored 9.750 to finish runner-up at the meet. Her score also bested her high from a season ago and was less than one-tenth of a point away from a career high. Following closely behind her was freshman Amanda Schlaefer with her 9.7 in her collegiate debut to finish seventh. Fellow freshman Wynne Levy just missed a top-10 performance with her 9.650 to finish in 11th in vault.
Kirsten Strausbaugh scored 9.625, finishing just .025 away from her career high in the event. Katie Graham and the third freshman to compete on vault, Amber Woo, each scored 9.525 to put all six vaulters over a 9.5 for the day. Graham's score on vault was higher than all but one of her scores in this event a season ago.
On the uneven bars, Penn scored 47.550 in their second-best event of the day. Strausbaugh led the team on this event with a 9.750 to finish the event in fourth overall. Megan Milavec scored 9.6 on bars to finish this event in 11th. For the juniors Strausbaugh and Milavec, each of their scores was less than one-tenth of a point away from career bests. DiPaolo finished up her two events with a 9.55, scoring better than all but one of her bar routines last season.
Another freshman, Makeda Constable scored 9.475 in her collegiate debut on bars to finish 17th overall and give Penn four gymnasts inside the top-20. Woo finished with a 9.150 to give Penn its fifth score in the event, while returning ECAC Athlete of the Year Dana Bonincontri scored 9.125 in her only event on the day.
On the balance beam, Penn posted its third 47-plus point team performance. With a very experienced beam team returning, it was the freshman Schlaefer that led all Penn gymnasts with her 9.650 to finish eighth in the event for the day. Graham scored 9.625 to tie her season high from 2011 and come withinfive-hundreths of her career best, finishing in the top-10 for the day. Constableaddeda9.6 to give the Quakers three top-11 scores overall. Another strong beam performer from last season, Milavec, scored 9.225 in her first beam routine of the year. All-Arounders Woo and Strausbaugh rounded out the Penn beam with 8.925 and 8.775 scores.
In the floor exercise, Strausbaugh picked up right where she left off a season ago, leading the team in her strongest event and scoring 9.7 in her first competition. This mark was good enough for fourth place out of all the gymnasts. Graham and Constable each finished with 9.2's, while Kaitlyn Reszkowski scored 9.1 in her first collegiate event. Woo scored 9.0 for Penn's fifth mark in the event, while Milavec tallied an 8.750.
In the all-around, Strausbaugh finished fifth overall, while Woo was also a top-10 performer in her freshman debut.
The Quakers will get their first chance to compete in front of the home crowd this Friday night when the team takes on Rutgers inside Hutchinson Gymnasium. The two-team meet will get underway at 7 p.m.
2. Laura DiPaolo - 9.750
7. Amanda Schlaefer - 9.700
11. Wynne Levy - 9.650
16. Kirsten Strausbaugh - 9.625
24. Katie Graham - 9.525
24. Amber Woo - 9.525
Uneven Bars (47.550)
4. Kirsten Strausbaugh - 9.775
11. Megan Milavec - 9.600
15. Laura DiPaolo - 9.550
17. Makeda Constable - 9.475
23. Amber Woo - 9.150
24. Dana Bonincontri - 9.125
Balance Beam (47.025)
8. Amanda Schlaefer - 9.650
10. Katie Graham - 9.625
11. Makeda Constable - 9.600
25. Megan Milavec - 9.225
32. Amber Woo - 8.925
33. Kirsten Strausbaugh - 8.775
Floor Exercise (46.200)
4. Kirsten Strausbaugh - 9.700
22. Katie Graham - 9.200
22. Makeda Constable - 9.200
25. Kaitlyn Reszkowski - 9.100
33. Amber Woo - 9.000
35. Megan Milavec - 8.750
5. Kirsten Strausbaugh - 37.875
10. Amber Woo - 36.600
Download: Lindsey Ferris Results.pdf