STATE COLLEGE, Pa. - For the first time in the history of the Michigan State gymnastics program, three gymnasts have been selected First Team All-Big Ten, as announced by the league office at Friday night's Big Ten Championships Banquet. Senior Kristen Coleman, and freshmen tumblers Nicole Curler and Rochelle Robinson all garnered first-team honors.
"We are thrilled with three All-Big ten first team selections," Spartan head coach Kathie Klages said. "We are proud of each of these young ladies efforts and all of their achievements this season."
The 2007 All-Big Ten First Team featured two-time All-Conference honorees in Tatjana Thuener-Rego of Michigan, Coleman and Maalika Moore-Thomas of Ohio State. The conference office also announced honorees from each team for the Big Ten Sportsmanship Award. The student-athletes chosen are individuals who have distinguished themselves through sportsmanship and ethical behavior. In addition, the student-athletes must be in good academic standing and have demonstrated good citizenship outside of the sports-competition setting. Katlyn Roggensack was MSU's recipient.
Coleman, who also earned first-team honors in 2006, is a two-time Big Ten Gymnast of the Week, and holds the top two scores in the Michigan State record book in the all-around competition. The Cornwall, Ontario native set the all-around Spartan benchmark twice in 2007, most recently at Western Michigan with a 39.625 on March 18. In the March 26 individual national rankings, she is seventh in the all-around with a season RQS average of 39.420, eighth on the balance beam (9.885) and tied for 19th on the uneven bars (9.885). Her all-around and balance beam averages also lead the Big Ten. Coleman has won or shared first-place honors four times on the uneven bars, four times on the balance beam, and five times in the all-around event this season.
Curler was honored with her first career Big Ten Gymnast of the Week honor in early January, and excelled as an all-arounder for the Spartans throughout the season. The Bay City, Mich., native is 25th in the national rankings on the floor exercise, and second in the conference with a season RQS of 9.875. She also ranks fourth on the balance beam (9.830) and eighth in the all-around (38.015) in the league. Curler has won or shared first-place honors four times on both the balance beam and floor exercise events this season, while she has shared top honors in the all-around event one time.
Robinson is a two-time Big Ten Gymnast of the Week honoree, and holds the only perfect 10.0 score in Michigan State history. She scored the flawless mark at the Feb. 10 Fox Run Invitational, and is one of just five gymnasts from across the country to record a perfect 10.0 on the event this season. The Chesapeake, Va., native enters the championship portion of the season ranked eighth in the nation, and is the top vaulter in the conference with a 9.905 season RQS. Robinson has won or shared first place honors on vault five times, including her perfect 10.0, and a solid 9.925 at the prestigious State of Michigan Classic in early February. Robinson has recorded at least one individual first-place finish on vault, the uneven bars and the floor exercise events this season.
Michigan State will compete in the 2007 Big Ten Championship Meet on Saturday at 6 p.m. Visit www.msuspartans.com for a complete meet recap.