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Ohio State competes in final tune-up before Big Ten championships

COLUMBUS, Ohio In its final meet of the regular season, the Ohio State women’s gymnastics team travels to West Virginia for a 7 p.m. meet Friday at the WVU Coliseum in Morgantown. Both the Buckeyes (6-6-1, 2-1-1 Big Ten) and Mountaineers (16-7, 9-0 East Atlantic Gymnastics League) are just outside the Top 25 this week as Ohio State owns a team Regional Qualifying Score of 194.220 and West Virginia checks in with a 194.585 RQS.

The Buckeyes are 4-4-1 away from St. John Arena this season and six of their best eight team scores have come on the road. The Mountaineers are coming off a quad-meet win at home last weekend when they scored a season-high 196.175.

Live scoring will be available at www.msnsportsnet.com/gymstats.htm.

The meet will be marked by Senior Day for the Mountaineers will also be Dollar Day, meaning all tickets and select concessions will be $1 each.

OHIO STATE IN THE RANKINGS
Ohio State holds a 194.220 team regional qualifying score, which ranks No. 7 in both the Big Ten and central region.

In the four events, the Buckeyes’ highest team RQS comes on floor with a 48.920, which ranks fifth in the region and No. 22 in the nation. Ohio Sate also ranks fifth in the region and No. 22 in the nation on bars with a 48.790 RQS. The squad ranks sixth on vault (48.846 RQS) and eighth on balance beam (48.085 RQS).

LEADING THE WAY
Freshman Rebecca Best ranks first or second on the team in all four events and the all-around. She leads the way on vault (9.825 RQS, 17th in region), balance beam (9.710 RQS, 32nd in region) and in the all-around (39.025 RQS, 11th in region). Best ranks second on the team on bars (9.760 RQS, 25th in region) and floor (9.850 RQS, ninth in region). Best has posted three 9.90 scores on floor this season.

Senior Kaylan Clevinger leads the Buckeyes on bars with a 9.855 RQS, which is tied for third in the region and tied for 25th in the nation. She has posted six first-place finishes on bars this season for Ohio State, including a 9.90 at Iowa.

Senior Maalika Moore-Thomas is the Buckeyes’ leader on floor with a 9.860 RQS, which ranks eighth in the region. She ranks second on the squad on vault with a 9.790 RQS (tied for 29th in region). Moore-Thomas holds Ohio State’s season personal best score on floor with a 9.950

Junior Kiki Holman ranks second for the team on balance beam with a 9.705 RQS. Behind Best in the all-around, sophomore Hillary Dow ranks second for the Buckeyes with a 38.600 RQS, which ranks No. 16 in the region.

LEADING THE WAY By the Numbers
VAULT RQS (Regional Rank)
1. Rebecca Best 9.825 (t-17)
2. Maalika Moore-Thomas 9.790 (t-29)
3. Beth Ann Ballard 9.780 (32)

BARS RQS (Regional Rank)
1. Kaylan Clevinger 9.855 (t-4)
2. Rebecca Best 9.760 (25)
3.  Alyssa Meyer 9.740  (t-29)

BALANCE BEAM RQS (Regional Rank) 
1. Rebecca Best 9.710 (t-32)
2. Kiki Holman 9.705 (35)
3. Maalika Moore-Thomas 9.635 (t-43)

FLOOR RQS (Regional Rank)
1. Maalika Moore-Thomas 9.860 (8)
2. Rebecca Best 9.850 (9)
t-3. Kaylan Clevinger 9.765 (t-32)
t-3. Alyssa Meyer 9.765 (t-32)

ALL-AROUND RQS (Regional Rank)
1. Rebecca Best 39.025 (11)
2. Hillary Dow- 38.600 (16)

A GLANCE AT THE MOUNTAINEERS
West Virginia posted its best score in four years with 196.175 points to top No. 24 Minnesota, New Hampshire and Rutgers last Saturday at the WVU Coliseum. The Mountaineers (16-7, 9-0 EAGL) were led by freshman Amy Bieski and Erica Watson. Bieski put together a career-high effort as an all-arounder, scoring 39.275 points to place first in the meet. Watson placed third in the all-around with 39.200 points.

LAST WEEK: BUCKEYES SCORE 194.15 AT ASU
Ohio State scored a 194.15 last Friday at Arizona State to snap a two-week skid that included team scores under 194, but the host Sun Devils scored a season-high 196.175 to win in Wells Fargo Arena. Led by a season-high four all-arounders, the Buckeyes scored slightly over their season regional qualifying score of 194.135 and moved to 4-4-1 on the road this season and 6-6-1 overall.

Freshman Rebecca Best and junior Kiki Holman shared the team’s best all-around score with a 38.875, which tied for fourth in the meet. For Holman, it marked the first time this season she has competed on floor (9.775) and in the all-around.

Sophomore Beth Ann Ballard led Ohio State on two events, scoring a career-high 9.850 on vault to place third in the meet and a 9.750 on bars to tie her career high and place fourth in the meet.

Holman led the Buckeyes on beam with a 9.725, which placed fifth in the meet, and she added a 9.775 on floor.

Ohio State’s final event leader was senior Maalika Moore-Thomas on floor with a 9.875, which placed second in the meet.

BUCKEYES ON BIG TEN NETWORK
Fans across the nation can watch the Buckeyes in full-action three times this season with the Big Ten Network, which began with their Big Ten debut of the meet at Iowa followed by the co-ed meet against Penn State. The Big Ten women’s gymnastics championships March 29 in Ann Arbor, Mich., will be aired on tape delay in a two-hour feature April 3 at 8 p.m.

UP NEXT
The Buckeyes travel to Ann Arbor, Mich., next Saturday for the Big Ten Championships hosted by the University of Michigan. Ohio State placed fourth at the league championships in 2007.

### OhioStateBuckeyes.com ###