Northern Illinois senior Ashley Guerra (Orland Park, Ill./Carl Sandburg HS) has been named the Mid-American Conference Specialist of the Week following her performance on the uneven parallel bars and balance beam versus New Hampshire last Saturday, the Mid-American Conference office announced Monday.
Guerra, who was selected in a vote of MAC gymnastics coaches, is the first Huskie to be honored this season.
Guerra posted a season-best score of 9.800 on uneven parallel bars to tie for first place versus UNH. Her score also tied the best bars set of the year for NIU.
One rotation later, Guerra recorded her top balance beam performance of the 2012 campaign as she scored a 9.675 to take fourth place. Her score was the second highest on the team in the meet, which saw NIU earn its highest team beam score of the year.
“This is an awesome honor for Ashley as a senior because she has been working hard all year and has been getting progressively better as the season has progressed,” said NIU head coach Sam Morreale.
“She has built up to this, but she knows that she still has room for improvement and that’s the great thing. As a coach you want kids that want to excel and want to be at the top of their game. This year, these awards are being selected by coaches in the MAC, so it’s great for our gymnasts to be recognized by other coaches.”
The Specialist of the Week honor is the third of Guerra’s career as she won the award once in both 2010 and 2011. She was also the league’s Specialist of the Year as a sophomore in 2010.
Northern Illinois concludes a three-week homestand this Saturday, Feb. 4, when the Huskies play host to Ball State at Victor E. Court in the NIU Convocation Center.
The meet, which is part of a doubleheader with the NIU women’s basketball team, begins at 5 p.m. and will mark the Huskies annual “Pink Meet” supporting the fight against cancer. Fans are encouraged to wear pink and the Northern Illinois chapter of Colleges Against Cancer will be on hand taking donations in exchange for pink T-shirts.
Tickets are available at the door with tickets to the women’s basketball game good for admission to the gymnastics meet. The meet will be streamed live through Huskies All-Access.