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Gymnastics Meet Notes ?- UCLA (2/24/06) Arizona
What’s on Tap: The No. 14 Arizona women’s gymnastics team (3-8) will host the No. 6 UCLA Bruins (15-2) this Friday, Feb. 24, in
Watch it Live: ArizonaAthletics.com will provide live statistics and a live video webcast of the event (video is mostly of Wildcat gymnasts only). As always, the live stats are free, while the live webcast this week will be available to All-Access subscribers only. Check back to ArizonaAthletics.com next week for free video clips of each event. Links will be provided in this article prior to the meet beginning on Friday. For more information, please log onto ArizonaAthletics.com.
The Rankings: The Wildcats remained at No. 14 in the nation this week as their RQS rose to 194.970. As a team, the Wildcats rank in the Top 20 in all four individual events, including No. 13 in the floor exercise, No. 14 on the beam, No. 7 on the uneven bars and No. 15 on the vault. Individually, Danielle Hicks is ranked No. 20 nationally in the all-around. Aubrey Taylor is ranked No. 21 in the all-around and No. 7 on the bars. The Wildcats began the year ranked No. 17 in the preseason coaches’ poll, and were ranked as high as No. 10 for the week of Jan. 30.
About the Rankings: Unlike other collegiate athletic rankings, collegiate gymnastic rankings are not based on wins and losses or votes. Gymnastic teams are ranked by their meet scores alone. Teams are ranked by their highest score from Jan. 9-15. From Jan. 16-Feb. 16, teams will be ranked by their total season average. Starting Feb. 20, teams and gymnasts will be ranked by a Regional Qualifying Score (RQS). An RQS is based on a team's top six regular-season scores, with three scores coming from away meets. To obtain the RQS, the team's or gymnast’s highest score is dropped and the remaining five scores are averaged.
Arizona Head Coach: Bill Ryden is in his eighth season at the helm of the
Scouting the Bruins: UCLA comes to the desert boasting a No. 6 national ranking and a 15-2 record. The Bruins are coming off a two-week stretch that included five meets in 15 days. The saqud’s lone loss during that span was at No. 1 Georgia. The Bruins are led by All-American Kate Richardson, the NCAA leader in the all-around. She has scored a 39.0 or better in each of the team’s last eight meets, and earned a season-high 39.575 on Feb. 10. Additionally,
Terrific Trio: Through the first six meets of the year, 96 of
Home at Last: After spending five of the first seven weeks of the season traveling to
Target 196: In the early part of the season, the 195-mark was a good measuring stick as to how a team was developing. The Wildcats have reached that benchmark in four of the last five meets. Now,
Steady Improvement: The Wildcats got off to a shaky start on the beam this season, but have since found some consistency in their young lineup. After posting a season-low 47.350 in the second meet of the year at
She’s Back: Named Pac-10 Gymnast of the Week three weeks ago, Aubrey Taylor has re-emerged as an all-arounder this season, returning to the vault lineup, the one event she didn’t compete in a year ago. Over the last four meets,
Back to Form: Despite being a freshman a year ago, Danielle Hicks became one of the Wildcats’ most consistent performers at the end of last season, competing as an all-around in the final six meets of the season and capturing two titles. Hicks got off to a bit of a slow start this year, however, seeing both Karin Wurm and Aubrey Taylor earn more consistent all-around totals early in the year. That changed three weeks ago when Hicks scored a 39.150 and placed second in the all-around, a total much more reminiscent of the scores she earned as a freshman. She bested that total three weeks ago and claimed her first all-around title of 2006 with a score of 39.175 against
Star in the Making: Freshman Alexis Greene has wasted no time in making a significant impact in the Wildcat lineup. The 5-5 native of
Beamer on Beam: Freshman Briana Bergeson, known better by her teammates as ?'Beamer,’ has quickly become the Wildcats’ top scorer the last four weeks on the balance beam. In three consecutive meets, she bested her career-high and has placed no lower than second in those meets. At
Workman-like Vaulter: Freshman Bree Workman has become one of the Wildcats’ top vaulters this season. She ranks second on the team behind classmate Alexis Greene with an average of 9.736. Against
Instant Impact: The Wildcats have called upon five freshmen to play integral roles this season. Alexis Greene has been a regular in three events and has won three floor titles. Briana Bergeson holds a team-best 9.900 on beam and has won two titles in the event. Three weeks ago, Bree Workman claimed her first-career vault title. Sarah Parsons, who has a season-high 9.825 on bars, joins Bergeson and Greene as regulars in the bars rotation. Against
Facing the Best:
Stacked Pac: Once again, the Pac-10 will be one of the toughest conferences in the country. Five teams are ranked after the first seven weeks of competition. UCLA leads the way at No. 6, followed by No. 12 Stanford, No. 14 Arizona, No. 15 Arizona State and No. 17 Oregon State. The same five teams plus Washington had been ranked in the first two polls of the season.
The Lone Senior: When a team graduates six seniors in one class, it usually means that the following year they will rely on a number of underclassmen. That certainly is the case this year for the Wildcats, but don’t tell that to senior Erin Muirhead. Muirhead, the team captain, looks to provide veteran leadership as she returns for her final season as a Wildcat. Coming off of a foot injury that cut short her season last year, Muirhead earned marks of 9.600 on beam and 9.675 on floor in
Junior Duo: The Wildcats have also turned to the leadership of a pair of juniors, Aubrey Taylor and Jamie Holton.
Super Soph’s: Danielle Hicks, Karin Wurm and Rachelle Silberg all played vital roles on the Wildcat squad as freshmen. Now as sophomores, each are playing a prominent role in the
Pac-10 Gymnast of the Week: Junior Aubrey Taylor was named the Pac-10 Conference Gymnast of the Week for the week of Jan. 24-30. The 5-2 native of
A Look Back: No. 14
The Wildcats, who had won three consecutive Pac-10 dual meets coming into the competition, could not have chosen a worse meet to have a bit of an off night.
The Wildcats opened the meet on the uneven parallel bars, an event they were ranked fourth in the nation on entering the meet. However,
Over on bars, the Stanford gymnasts stole the show led by Liz Tricase. Tricase earned a 10.0 to claim the individual title. Her teammate Tabitha Yim nearly matched the perfect score, but settled for a 9.950. Natalie Foley, Nicole Ourada and Glyn Sweets also turned in impressive performances, with each scoring a 9.825. As a team, Stanford scored a 49.425, matching the highest team score in the nation on bars to date.
Trailing 98.575-97.425 entering the third rotation,
Meanwhile, Stanford increased its lead scoring a season-high 49.050 on beam. Yim turned in her second mark of 9.950 on the night, claiming the individual title.
The Wildcats moved to the balance beam and showed some strong character, recording a solid 48.825 in the event. Hicks paced the Wildcats with a 9.800, while Bergeson, Taylor and Wurm each posted marks of 9.775. Muirhead also added a 9.700, while Holton scored a 9.675.
The Cardinal closed the meet strong, finishing with a 49.250 on floor. Ourada earned a 9.925 to capture the individual title.
Stanford gymnasts also swept the top three all-around spots. Yim captured the title with a 39.625, while Ourada and Foley totaled scores of 39.175 and 39.100, respectively. For the Wildcats, Hicks earned the top all-around score, posting a 38.975.
Future Cats: Last November, Head Coach Bill Ryden announced the signing of three student-athletes who inked their names to National Letters of Intent to come to
Looking ahead: The Wildcats will remain at home next week as they host No. 2 Florida and BYU on Friday, March 3.