Penn State's record score costs Towson State its opener GYMNASTICS


Freshman Tracy Kerner finished first in the all-around competition with a 38.35 to lead Penn State to a Towson Center-record score of 191.05 points and a women's gymnastics victory over Towson State before a crowd of 1,200 yesterday.

In its opening meet of the season, Towson State, losing at home for the first time since March 1988, also broke the record of 188.85 with a mark of 189.35.

Penn State took control of the meet in its third discipline, scoring 48.65 in floor exercise, behind the 1-2 finish of Jada Hiltebrand and Laurie Russo.

At the same time, on the nearby balance beam, Towson State was turning in its poorest showing of the four disciplines, with a 46.20.

"They could see we weren't doing very well, and that got them pumped up," Towson State coach Dick Filbert said. "They had the lead then, and teams like to go last on beam, because they know whether they have to go all out or can pull back some of their more difficult routines."

Towson State had a slight edge after the two teams competed in vaulting and on the uneven bars, but the Nittany Lions, fifth in last year's NCAA championships, moved ahead on the third rotation.

Wendy Weaver, the Tigers' senior captain, equaled two school records in matching her 9.70 in the vault, and Anne Sugden's 9.80 bars of a year ago.

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