COLLEGEVILLE, Pa. – Two home duals with West Chester and three trips to Philadelphia highlight the 2018-19 Ursinus College gymnastics schedule as new head coach Kim Valenti gets set to begin her tenure as the head of the program.
The Bears will take part in eight meets during the regular season, competing alongside a handful of Division I programs as well as many of their NCGA East Region counterparts. It all gets underway on January 12, when Ursinus heads to Rhode Island College for an all-regional quad featuring Springfield and Brockport.
Next is an away clash on January 20 at West Chester, the first of three dual meets between the familiar foes.
Ursinus gets its first taste of Division I action on January 27 at Temple, where Valenti's squad is part of a quad that also includes Penn and reigning NCGA East champion Ithaca.
The Bears make their annual trip to the world-famous Palestra on February 3 to take on an all-Ivy League cast that includes Brown and Cornell in addition to the host Quakers.
Ursinus will then travel to Cortland – last year's NCGA East runner-up – on February 9 for a tri-meet with West Chester before returning to Helfferich Hall to tackle the Golden Rams in their home opener on February 17.
Following a second visit to Temple with Division II opponent Bridgeport on February 22 for the Ken Anderson Invitational, the Bears welcome West Chester back to Collegeville for a senior day dual on March 2.
Postseason competition takes center stage on March 9 with the NCGA East Regional Championship on the campus of Cortland. The top three team finishers qualify for the NCGA Championship, which takes place March 23 at the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh.
Valenti begins her first season in charge of a young roster headlined by co-captains senior Lindsay Rush and junior Eleanor (Ellie) LaFountain. LaFountain was an All-American on the floor a season ago and this year will see an opportunity at the all-around. Rush was a solid competitor on both the uneven bars and vault for the Bears last season. Senior Matisen O'Brien will be relied upon for her experience on the balance beam, and an incoming class of six freshmen will have opportunities in the line-up as many strong contributors graduated this past May.