Gymnastics to Open Season with Red vs. Black

Maryland Athletics
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The women’s gymnastics team will host its annual Red vs. Black intrasquad meet on Thursday at 7p.m. in Comcast Pavilion. The meet, which is free and open to the public, gives the team an opportunity to showcase its talents for the 2013-14 season. The Terps are no. 24 in the GymInfo preseason rankings.

In his fifth season, head coach Brett Nelligan looks forward to this meet as an opportunity to perform in a competitive atmosphere. In November the team ran a closed-door intrasquad with judges and officials who scored the routines.

“This one is more to get them ready for the crowd. We’ll have the crowd there and people cheering for them,” Nelligan said. “It’s different coming from club and going to college where you have fans and people with signs and cheering. They need to get used to that. So, what I’d like to see them do is have fun, be high energy and explosive in the meet and get used the pace of the meet with fans there with the loud, the cheering, the crowd.”

The teams will separate into the Red and the Black squads and compete against one another. Various student-athletes will judge the intrasquad, including: baseball’s Kevin Martir and Jose Cuas, football’s Zach Dancel and Dexter McDougle, field hockey’s Brooke Cabrera, softball’s Madison Martin, women’s soccer’s Alex Doody and women’s track & field’s Amina Smith.

The Red Squad

Jessie Black
Notes: Last season she scored a 9.700 on bars against George Washington, Brown and Towson. She also recorded a 9.750 on bars at EAGL Championships and competed on bars at NCAA Regionals.

Nikola Chung
Notes: She was a member of the 2011 Australian world championship team. Chung has led Australia to five top-three team finishes and earned 26 individual medals since 2010.

Nikki Dragon
Notes: She was a member of Galaxy Gymnastics and named N.Y. state balance beam champion. Dragon is a four-time Junior Olympic National Team member.

Sarah Faller
Notes: Faller is a five-time Junior Olympic National Qualifier. She is a six-time North Carolina state champion and a level nine Junior Olympics National All-Around Winner.

Stephanie Giamo
Notes: Giamo ranked eighth nationally on beam last season. She earned EAGL Gymnast of the Year honors. She also earned regular-season first-team NACGC/W All-America honors on beam.

Emily Heller
Notes: She was the 2011 Gymnast of the Year in Maryland. Heller competed on vault in nine meets in 2012 and floor in two.

Dani Kram
Notes: Last season she competed on beam in 11 meets and floor in four. She competed for Hills Gymnastics prior to coming to Maryland.

Kathy Tang
Notes: In 2013 she ranked second in the EAGL in all-around, fourth in the conference on vault and tied for third on bars.

Alex Zimmermann
Notes: Competed on floor in eight meets last season and vault in six.

The Black Squad

Emily Brauckmuller
Notes: Prior to coming to Maryland, Brauckmuller qualified for the Nastia Liukin Supergirl Cup and placed sixth all-around and on floor and 10th on beam at the 2012 U.S. Junior Olympic National Championships. She also placed second at the Florida state championships.

Katy Dodds
Notes: Last season Dodds ranked eighth nationally on vault and 20th nationally on floor. She set a program record on vault with a 9.975 against NC State. She was named to the All-EAGL vault and floor first teams and earned regular-season first-team NACGC/W All-America honors on vault.

Haley Jones
Notes: Was a 2011 U.S. Junior Olympic National Invitational beam gold medalist. She also placed third on floor and fourth all-around.

Elizabethe Manzi
Notes: Manzi competed in 10 meets on bars and six on beam last season. She earned the EAGL Scholar-Athlete of the Year award.

Bailey Philbin
Notes: Last season, Philbin competed in her first collegiate meet and earned a career-best 9.700 against NC State, New Hampshire and Towson on bars. She competed for Hills Gymnastics before Maryland.

Shannon Skochko
Notes: In 2012 she competed in 13 meets on beam, eight on vault and five on floor. She finished in the top 20 that season on beam at the EAGL Championships and earned second team EAGL All-Tournament honors.

Leah Slobodin
Notes: Slobodin competed for Capital Gymnastics NTC and was a four-time Junior Olympic National qualifier. In 2012, she placed fifth on beam and 15th all-around at Junior Nationals.

Karen Tang
Notes: She tied for third in the EAGL Championships on bars. Tang competed on vault and bars in three meets last season and beam in three.

Ebony Walters
Notes: She competed on beam in 12 meets last season and earned a career-high 9.900 on floor.