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    Illini Ink: Women's Gymnastics Online Journal Week 29
    Sophomore Hannah Welker

    Sophomore Hannah Welker

    April 28, 2010

    Get behind the scenes of Illinois Gymnastics with Illini Ink - the weekly women's gymnastics journal. In this year's 29th edition, sophomore Hannah Welker recaps the NCAA Championships and discusses plans for the final few weeks of the semester.

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    Hey Illini Fans!

    Wow! It is hard to believe that our season is over. It flew by this year. We had so much fun! This weekend, Sarah and Allison ended it on a high note for us. Since we did not qualify to Nationals as a team, Allison and Sarah got to represent the Orange and Blue in sunny Gainseville, Florida! Lucky girls! From what I've heard, they had beautiful weather and enjoyed the warmth a lot.

    The girls both competed on Thursday in the preliminary round, which gave them the chance of qualifying to event finals on Saturday. They both had a great competition. Although most of us could not make the trip, Lori and Laura surprised the girls by heading down to Florida for the meet. The rest of us got to watch on our computers though, which was nice. Sarah competed in the all-around for her final time as an Illini gymnast, since she will be graduating soon. She did one of her best floor routines, scoring a 9.850, just a hair short of earning 2nd Team All-America Honors for the second year in a row. Never the less, she ended her career in style!

    Allison competed in the vault on Thursday and did amazing! She did her sky-high yurchenko full and STUCK IT! She knew that's what it was going to take to make event finals and she did it. With a score of 9.9, she moved on to finals and earned First Team All-America Honors for the first time in her career. That marks only the second Illinois gymnast to earn the prestigious award.

    Saturday, she went big during her vault finals! In finals, you have to compete two vaults, which are averaged together to get your final score. Al had fun and got to compete her yurchenko full as well as a front handspring, front pike. Although she did not place in finals, she had a blast!

    So with all of the competition wrapped up for the year, we're all winding down, with school, gym, and team meetings. This weekend we have our annual team banquet. There will be great food, awards, and lots of parents who have been supporting us all year. Finals start next week so we're giving it one last push this week in the classroom to end the semester well.

    I hope you all had as much fun this year as we all have! We just want to thank all of the fans for supporting us this season and we hope you stick with us next year for more great gymnastics! Who knows, maybe I'll get to see some of you at the Illinois Gymnastics Camp in June! Have a fantastic, healthy summer and we'll see you in the fall!

    And remember, Go Ilini!

    -Hannah

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