Musser begins NCAA competition Friday

April 18, 2013

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Penn State senior Sharaya Musser (Colorado Springs, Colo.) will open up competition at the 2013 women's gymnastics championships on Friday (April 19) at 3 p.m. ET in the all-around on the UCLA campus. Musser finished with an all-around score of 39.375, a tie for second place in the all-around at the NCAA Norman, Okla. Regionals, to earn a berth into the NCAA championships.

"It's amazing that Sharaya has qualified as an individual all four years," said head coach Jeff Thompson. "She is such a great athlete. We think she has an excellent chance of making balance beam finals and finishing the season as a first team All-American on that event. She also has another shot on vault. Her freshman year she made vault finals, and she will be the last person competing on vault in the meet. If she does a trademark Sharaya Musser stick, she may have a chance of making finals too. I'm hoping we can prolong her career a couple of days and get her an individual title."

The women's gymnastics championships consist of 12 teams and 12 all-around competitors, who are not on a qualifying team, and individual event specialists. The top two teams and the top two all-around competitors from each of the six regionals have advanced to the national championships.

Team semifinal and all-around competitor will be conducted in two sessions on Friday, with Musser competiting in the 3 p.m. ET session. She will join the University of Georgia in the rotations. The top three teams from each semifinal will advance to the Super Six competition on Saturday, April 20. The top four individuals in each event (plus ties) from Friday's semifinals will compete in the individual-event competition on Sunday, April 21.

Musser, who earned first team All-Big Ten honors every year of her fantastic Nittany Lion career, had one of her best meets of the season against Kentucky, where she put up a 9.9 on vault, a 9.95 on beam, a 9.925 on floor and a 39.650 in the all-around, all season-highs. Musser's 9.95 beam performance against the Wildcats included a perfect 10 from one of the judges. Additionally, the Colorado native tallied a 9.925 on beam on Feb. 23 for her season-high. Musser is the first Nittany Lions gymnast to earn All-American honors since Brandi Personett won it from 2008-10.

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Last Updated April 18, 2013