Lexy Ramler had a perfect 10 on the vault and broke her own program record in the all-around to lead the No. 8 Gophers to the title in the Big Five women's gymnastics meet on Friday in College Park, Md.
Ramler not only won the vault, the senior also took first in the other four events — bars (9.975), beam (9.950) and floor exercise (9.925) — for a 39.850 all-around score.
"Tonight is one of those speechless nights for me," said Ramler, a senior and native of St. Michael, Minn., who graduated from Winona High School. "Everything came together and it's just so amazing to continue to make history.
"I couldn't do it without this incredible team. They continue to push limits and build our team confidence as well as my own confidence. Each one of us are giving all our heart to truly create one heart as a team."
The team totals: Minnesota 197.375, Illinois 196.600, Maryland 195.725, Ohio State 195.275, Nebraska 195.00.
"We are so proud of the way the team fought tonight," Gophers coach Jenny Hansen said. "It was a breakthrough night for our bars squad and the beam team once again performed under pressure. Tonight was incredibly important for our confidence going into the championship season in just a few weeks."
The Gophers set a program record with a score of 49.575 on bars.
Ramler's winning score of 9.975 tied her career-best on the event. Hannah Willmarth and Tiarre Sales were next, posting matching 9.925s. Willmarth set a career-high for the second straight week. Ona Loper followed with a 9.900 while Halle Remlinger scored a 9.850 on her debut on bars for the Gophers.
Next the Gophers return to Maturi Pavilion for the final home meet of the regular season against Nebraska at 2 p.m. Friday.
Their final dual meet is at Illinois on March 13. The Big Ten Championships are March 19-21 at a site to be determined. The NCAA selection show is March 29. Four regionals, at sites already picked, will be held April 1-3 and the NCAA Championships will be held April 16-17 in Fort Worth, Texas.
U softball splits on opening day
The Gophers softball team, No. 24 in the USA Today/NFCA preseason rankings, opened its season with a 2-1 victory over Maryland in eight innings on Friday in Leesburg, Fla. Amber Fiser pitched a four-hitter and struck out nine for the win. Natalie DenHartog had an RBI single in the top of the eighth.
Maryland won the second game 2-1, scoring the go-ahead run on a wild pitch in the sixth. Katelyn Kemmetmueller singled for the Gophers' RBI.
Pentathlete for U women wins
Allison Gerads of the Gophers won the pentathlon with a career-best score of 4,088 points on Day 2 at the Big Ten Indoor Track & Field Championships in Geneva, Ohio. Her win and three points in other events gave Minnesota 50 — eight more than second-place Nebraska — going into 12 event finals on Saturday.
Amira Young (7.31) and Akilah Lewis (7.39) of the Gophers advanced to the 60-meter final with the top two preliminary times.
On the men's side, the Gophers advanced four individuals to Saturday's finals. The men are in third place with 25 points, trailing Iowa (51) and Nebraska (28).
Richter finalists have state ties
The Gophers' Jack LaFontaine, Minnesota State Mankato's Dryden McKay and Providence's Jaxson Stauber of Plymouth are among the nine finalists for the Mike Richter Award, given to the top goalie in Division I men's hockey.
• The host Gophers were in sixth place in the Big Ten women's swimming and diving meet with 427 points going into the final day. Ohio State was in first with 1,139.5 points, nearly 200 ahead of Michigan.
• The Gophers men's tennis team opened its season with a 4-3 win at home over No. 24 Northwestern. Sebastian Vile won 4-6, 7-5, 7-5 at No. 5 singles for the clinching point.