Terps Open 2013 in Raleigh
Jan. 9, 2013
COLLEGE PARK, Md. -
The University of Maryland gymnastics team opens its season against No. 22 NC State in Raleigh Friday. Maryland was chosen to finish second in the 2013 East Atlantic Gymnastics League (EAGL) Preseason Coaches Poll, only behind NC State.
The Terps return three 2012 All-EAGL First Team members and welcome in four talented freshmen. The Terps feature two seniors, five juniors and nine underclassmen.
Maryland should be strong on floor this season, where the team averaged the best scores last year. Senior Ally Krikorian won the gold medal on floor at the 2012 EAGL Championships and was named to the All-EAGL first team, and junior Katy Dodds finished in an eight-way tie for second place in the event. Ebony Walters, coming off a successful sophomore season on floor, should also step up for the Terps.
Maryland looks to dominate on vault, which was the team's second-best event last year. Dodds and Krikorian won gold on vault in a five-way tie at the EAGL Championships and were named to the All-EAGL first team in the event.
Four Terps scored 9.725 or higher on uneven bars at the NCAA Regional Championships last season, and the team looks to improve its depth this year. Junior Karen Tang and Cofsky should be major contributors, in addition to Dodds and juniors Elizabethe Manzi and Jessie Black. Tang was named to the All-EAGL first team on bars last season, while Dodds, Cofsky and Black produced the highest scores at the EAGL Championships and the NCAA Regional Championships.
The Terps look to improve on beam, where the team averaged the lowest scores last season. Giameo should be a major competitor in the event after a successful freshman campaign. Giameo tied for 13th in the event at the NCAA Regional Championship and tied for 10th at the EAGL Championship. Manzi, Krikorian and sophomore Shannon Skochko should help round out the rotation.
"I think we've improved the most on beam, especially in the last few weeks," said Nelligan. "It looks like they have really stepped up, and that event is looking really strong."
Adding to the Terrapin coaching staff's arsenal are four highly regarded freshmen.
Bailey Philbin competed for Hills Gymnastics for 12 years before becoming a Terp. Philbin qualified for Junior Olympic Nationals twice in high school.
Haley Jones competed for First State Gymnastics prior to joining the Terps. Jones won gold on beam at the 2011 U.S. Junior Olympic National Invitational.
Alex Zimmerman competed for Skyline Gymnastics for 10 years before joining the Terps. She placed 30th on vault and tied for 30th on beam at the 2011 U.S. Women's Junior Olympic National Championship.
This Weekend: NC State
The Terps begin their 2013 campaign in Raleigh at 7 p.m. on Friday. The meet is available live online through gopack.com.NC State is coming off a 7-5 season where the Wolfpack placed second at the EAGL Championships and third at the NCAA Regional Championships. NC State added six freshmen to its rotation. The Wolfpack returns three All-EAGL first team gymnasts, including junior Stephanie Ouellette, who was named to first teams on bars, floor and all-around.