Feb. 21, 2004
COLUMBUS, Ohio – In front of 2,938 fans the Ohio State women’s gymnastics team (7-3-1, 0-1-1 Big Ten) tied No. 22 Penn State 195.950-195.950 Saturday in St. John Arena. The tie is the first for Ohio State since March, 1 1987, when the Buckeyes tied Minnesota 185.40-185.40. Ohio State tallied its highest point total of the season in the meet, surpassing the 195.600 scored against West Virginia and N.C. State Jan. 18. Ohio State rebounds from a 197.100-193.825 loss at No. 9 Nebraska, Feb. 14.
“Sometimes it takes a meet like that (against Nebraska) for a team to bottom out and then come back and really show what they can do,” Larry Cox, head coach said. “It was a total team effort. Our seniors were awesome tonight and showed a lot of leadership. We didn’t let the little things that went wrong tonight bother us.”
The Buckeyes were paced by Tiffanie Janke (Sr., Schaumberg, Ill.), who claimed her second all-around title in three weeks with a 39.275. Janke placed second on vault with a 9.875 and second on beam with a 9.850. Junior Elizabeth Meaney (Ashtabula, Ohio) placed first on beam with a 9.875 and first on floor with a 9.900. Kaylin Schlecht (So., Marion, Ohio) posted a strong performance as well, placing second on bars with a 9.875 and placing third in the all-around with a score of 39.025. Leah Boccaccio (So., Enfield, Conn.) placed third on bars with a 9.825.
“We performed very well tonight,” Janke said. “This meet definitely builds our confidence and that confidence is something we are going to need in our last three meets. We still need to get back to the gym and work on some things this week and prepare for Michigan State and West Virginia.” Three Buckeyes set new career highs in the meet. Freshman Elizabeth Ahlberg (San Antonio, Texas) scored a 9.750 on vault to top her previous mark of 9.725 set against West Virginia and N.C. State, Jan. 18. She also scored a 9.775 on floor to beat her 9.700 also set against West Virginia and N.C. State. Brittany Livingston (Fr., Lisle, Ill.) scored a 9.725 on vault, breaking her previous mark of 9.700 set against West Virginia and N.C. State. Kaylin Schlecht scored a 9.875 on bars to beat her 9.850 set at the Big Ten Championship, March, 29, 2003.
Overall the Buckeyes claimed both the uneven bars competition, with a 49.025, and the balance beam competition, with a season- high 49.000. Ohio State tied Penn State on floor exercise with a 49.100 but fell to the Nittany Lions on vault 49.250-48.825.
The Buckeyes return to action, Saturday, Feb.28 at 7 p.m., in East Lansing, Mich. for a tri-meet against Michigan State and West Virginia.