COLUMBUS, Ohio – Once again, the atmosphere in St. John Arena helped propel the Buckeyes to victory as they bested Penn State, 196.200-196.025, on Friday night for their third straight win.
“The crowd was instrumental tonight,” said head coach Meredith Paulicivic. “We chose to rest some of our big guns and insert some people with a little less experience. I think having the crowd behind them, for them to be able to step in and do a good job, was super helpful.”
For the third consecutive meet, OSU clinched event titles on vault, uneven bars and floor exercise. The team’s 196.200 is the second-highest total of the season. The Scarlet & Gray also had seven finishers on the podium.
The night began on vault with a 49.050. Jamie Stone and Olivia Aepli tied for second after they both scored a 9.850. Stone’s mark was a season high while Janelle McClelland’s 9.825 was a new personal best.
Jenna Swartzentruber won on uneven bars after scoring a 9.875. Alexis Mattern landed in a four-way tie for second place behind a season-high 9.850. Amanda Huang had a 9.825 to tie her career high. As a team, the Buckeyes had a 49.175, the second-best tally thus far.
Stone was Ohio State’s top finisher on beam as she tied for third with a 9.800 mark. Stefanie Merkle knotted her season high on a 9.775. OSU completed its turn on the apparatus with 48.775.
The Buckeyes cleared 49.000 on floor exercise for the fourth time this season thanks to a score of 49.200. Stone and Merkle joined a pair of Nittany Lions on top of the podium as they all tallied a 9.875. The mark was a new season high for Merkle. In her first time ever competing on floor, Huang posted a 9.800.
With a trio of finishes on the podium, Stone was named Ohio State’s MVP.
The Scarlet & Gray are back in St. John Arena on Saturday, Feb. 17 at 4 p.m. ET.