March 4, 2012
PALO ALTO, Calif. - the Arizona women's gymnastics team finished second in a conference tri-meet against No. 12 Stanford and California. The team totaled a 195.025, with the Cardinal earning a 196.575 and the Golden Bears posting a 191.350.
The Wildcats began the afternoon on beam, posting a 48.425 under the leadership of senior Britnie Jones and junior Aubree Cristello, with twin scores of 9.725. Other major contributions came from senior Katie Matusik and sophomore Jordan Williams who both earned scores of 9.700.
"The beam panel today was tough. It's fine; they were tough on everyone, but it was interesting to me that our highest scoring event from UC Davis was our lowest scoring event at Stanford. It was an interesting start, but I was confident it was something we could come back from," head coach Bill Ryden said.
Arizona made up for the slow start in the second rotation, posting the highest floor total of the night with a 49.025. Freshman Kristin Klarenbech re-joined the lineup, earning a 9.850 to tie with teammate sophomore Shana Sangston, and Matusik contributed with a 9.800. For the second straight event, Cristello led the Cats with a 9.875 to earn third place on the event
"The reality about our floor is that ever since Deanna went down we have been sort of searching and hunting for what works. We keep looking for different things, and I was pretty pleased with today's effort. I think a huge highlight was Shana, who now has proven that she is a consistent floor worker, and it was nice to have Kristin back in the lineup," Ryden said.
Cristello's success was not over at the halfway point, as she scored a nearly 9.90 to tie for first on vault. Marks of 9.825 from Williams (third place), 9.750 from Quirk and 9.675 from Sangston, Cardenas, and Douglas totaled to a team score of 48.825 on the event.
The Cats then rotated to bars, rounding out the meet with a team 48.750. Freshman Danielle Buchanan made a splash in her second bar routine of the year, posting a new career high 9.775 to tie with Jones for the highest team score on the event.
"It's exciting that Danielle has had so much success so far. She is still in the process of growing that bar routine; she doesn't give away any deductions in her actual routine, and only needs to really work her dismount. She's finally learning to compete and not get nervous and did a great job today," Ryden commented.
Cristello had the second highest team score with a 9.750, and Quirk and Matusik both posted scores of 9.725.
In the all-around, Cristello ended up in second place with a total score of 39.250. Quirk also competed all-around, taking third with a 38.700.
"I think today we walked away with a lot of answers to our questions. Our team is full of gamers. Today wasn't necessarily our highest score, but we can now pinpoint the areas that we need to work on: we keep sticking beam dismounts, but we need to not wobble in routines. We need to work on table technique and vault landings, and we need to execute and refine on bars and floor," Ryden said.
The Cats will take these corrections and apply them on the road next week, heading to Durham, New Hampshire to compete against New Hampshire University at 7:00 p.m. on Saturday, March 10.