The Gophers women’s gymnastics team reached the NCAA Championships at the end of Lindsay Mable’s freshman season, its last appearance as a full team at the national meet until this April, when Mable (now a senior) helped lead her squad back to the NCAAs. Plenty happened in between, especially for Mable as an individual performer.
Including that freshman campaign – one which earned her the conference’s Freshman of the Year award – Mable has been one of the most dominate gymnasts in the country, piling up 96 individual event titles, 26 all-around crowns and 18 All-America honors during her Gopher career. She’s added to her trophy case with two Big Ten Gymnast of the Year awards and the AAI Award, given to the nation’s most outstanding senior gymnast.
With all of that on her resume, qualifying for nationals with her team earlier this spring in front of the home crowd at the Sports Pavilion is still one of the more breathless moments of her career.
“It’s something we’ve been working so hard for,” said Mable. “It has consumed our thoughts and our minds for the whole year. For it to become a reality, there are no words to really describe how special it is to all of us to have all the hard work come to fruition and come together in a special place, at home in the Pavilion.”
Mable earned the last four All-America nods of her collegiate career at this year’s NCAA Championships, picking up First Team recognition on bars, floor and all-around, adding a Second Team honor on vault. With a pile of plaudits that makes her the most decorated gymnast in program history, Mable hopes it’s the work done away from competition, the work that led to those accomplishments, that people remember about her years from now.
“Hopefully we are inspiring [younger athletes] to want to work hard … every day and leave their own legacy,” Mable said. “When you step into your competition arena, that’s where everyone sees the hard work you put into practice every day, but hopefully all the people who we’re inspiring know that every day in practice you have to put in the work, put in the hours, for it to show.”
In a season where Gopher women won a national championship, collected conference player of the year honors in multiple sports, broke records and produced numerous highlights, Mable may have been the single most impressive performer of the bunch. When presented with this idea, Mable instead opts to talk about what’s going on throughout the athletics department.
“When you’re around a lot of people doing amazing things, you just want to be up there with them,” she said. “When people say to me, ‘You’re in the field with Rachel Banham and Amanda Kessel,’ that’s such an honor for me because I know how amazing they are, not only amazing athletes, but amazing people.
“Women’s athletics at the U is becoming so much bigger and to be a part of that movement and going forward for future generations means a lot to me and our whole team.”
Two-time Big Ten Gymnast of the Year
AAI Award Winner