Ona Loper won the all-around, took first in one individual event and tied for first in two others as the Gophers edged Iowa 197.625 to 196.450 on Friday afternoon at Maturi Pavilion in their first women's gymnastics meet of the season. Minnesota's team score was the program's highest ever in an opening meet.
Loper's all-around score was 39.625, which beat teammate Lexy Ramler's 39.550. Iowa did not have anyone competing in all-around. Ramler is the two-time defending Big Ten Gymnast of the Year.
Loper, a senior from Bluffton, S.C., also won vault (9.950), tied Ramler for first in uneven bars (9.925), ands tied teammate Mya Hooten and a Hawkeye for first in floor exercise (9.950). Ramler won the balance beam (9.975).
Minnesota was ranked No. 2 in the Big Ten preseason coaches' poll, Iowa No. 4.
Regan Smith shines
Lakeville swimmer Regan Smith won the 100-meter butterfly and finished second in the 200 freestyle Friday at a Pro Swim Series meet in San Antonio, Texas.
Smith, 18, won the 100 fly in 58.55 seconds. That final came about 35 minutes after she clocked a time of 1:59.49 in the 200 free, finishing second to Madisyn Cox (1:59.42). Smith will swim three more events at the meet, which runs through Sunday.
Associate AD Ellison retires from U of M
Scott Ellison, a Gophers senior associate athletic director for facilities & capital projects, retired Friday after 32 years working for the University of Minnesota.
Ellison was involved in more than $500 million in capital projects and oversaw an annual operating budget of more than $10 million. He worked in a wide range of facilities and roles, including everything from "ice technician" out of college to his involvement with the development, building, and management of TCF Bank Stadium and Athletes Village.
U wrestlers face two
The No. 14 Gophers wrestling team will be in East Lansing, Mich., on Saturday to face two Big Ten opponents. Minnesota will meet Maryland at 1 p.m. and host Michigan State at 3 p.m. Both matches will be on BTN Plus, a subscription streaming service. Gophers top-ranked heavyweight Gable Steveson has won 18 matches in a row going back to last season and is 30-0 in dual meets.