Seven Temple gymnasts qualified for last night’s United States Gymnastics National Championship hosted by Centenary College in Shreveport, La., junior captain Heather Zaniewski was the lone athlete to advance to Sunday afternoon’s event finals.
On uneven parallel bars, Zaniewski scored a 9.825, a career best on the apparatus. Good enough to place her second overall and advance to Sunday’s individual event finals.
“It was just incredible for us to see that,” women’s coach Aaron Murphy said. “And for her to go up there and accomplish that, because honestly her warm-up session did not go well at all, but I went up to her and said ‘hey you can do this and you know you can do it, believe in it.’”
To kick off the USAG National Championship for Temple, sophomore Lauren Capone posted a 9.625 on vault, placing her 16th overall.
Fellow sophomore Stephanie Verry qualified for the USAG National Championship on floor exercise but was pulled out of the competition due to an injured ankle suffered at the Eastern Collegiate Athletic Conference Championship two weeks prior. Competing as an injured reserve, senior Margaret Walch took to the floor and scored a 9.725 in what was her final collegiate appearance.
On balance beam junior Sylvie Borschel and Taylor Rakus scored the highest scores amongst Temple gymnasts on the apparatus. Borschel scored a 9.600, while Rakus posted a 9.575.
Jean Alban was the lone Owl participating in the all-around. The senior from Springfield, Mass. scored a 37.625 on all four events.
Junior Brittanie DeMeno competed in vault and balance beam, scoring a 9.550 and a 9.325 respectively.
Zaniewski will be the only Owl left participating in the 2013 season as she will partake in the individual event final for uneven parallel bars and will attempt to be the USAG National Champion on the apparatus. Competition will begin tomorrow at 1 p.m.