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Arizona Gymnastics Meet Notes
Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
Release: 02/10/2003
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Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
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Feb. 10, 2003

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What's on Tap: The No. 13 University of Arizona women's gymnastics team (4-4, 1-2) returns home to face the No. 2 University of Utah Utes (3-2) on Friday, Feb. 14 at 7:30 p.m. in McKale Center.

The Rankings: Arizona enters this week's competition as the No. 13 ranked team in the nation. After five meets, Arizona is averaging 195.380 points per meet, with its highest mark (196.175) coming against rival Arizona State (Jan. 31). As a team, the Wildcats are ranked 10th in the nation on beam (48.975), No. 12 on bars (48.800) and No. 19 on vault (48.750). Arizona's lone ranked gymnast this week is sophomore Jamie Schell, who owns a No. 16 national ranking in the all-around (39.325) and a No. 15 ranking on beam (9.875).

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. From Jan. 27 to Feb. 17, teams and individuals will be ranked by total season average. Starting Feb. 24, teams and gymnasts will be ranked by Regional Qualifying Score (RQS). A Regional Qualifying Score is based on a team's top-six regular-season scores, with three scores coming from away meets. To obtain the regional qualifying score, the team's or gymnast's highest score is dropped and the remaining five scores are averaged. Complete rankings can be viewed at www.troester.com.

Arizona Head Coach Bill Ryden... is in his fifth season at the helm of the Arizona gymnastics program and holds a school and career record of 53-68-1. Ryden leads Arizona into 2003 after making his first appearance as a head coach at a NCAA Championship (2002), the program's first appearance since 1996. In 2002, Ryden earned Pac-10 Conference Coach of the Year honors as well as South Central Regional Coach of the Year honors, becoming the first head coach in Arizona history to have earned Regional Coach of the year honors.

Last Time Out/Cat Classic: The No. 10 University of Arizona women's gymnastics team placed third with a score of 194.575 at the 23rd Annual State Farm Cat Classic on Friday, Feb. 7, before a crowd of 1695 in Missouri's Hearnes Center. Arizona was edged by first place No. 22 Missouri (195.875) and second place New Hampshire (195.100), but finished ahead of No. 20 BYU (192.850).

The 23rd Annual Cat Classic witnessed a blitzing of its record books on Friday night. Missouri's first place score of 195.875 and New Hampshire's mark of 195.100, now stand as the first and second all-time highest team marks in Cat Classic history. The previous record was 194.950, set by BYU in 2002. Arizona's team mark of 194.575 is now the fifth-best team score in Cat Classic history. Missouri also set a new Cat Classic team records on vault (49.150) and on beam (49.150).

Individually for the Wildcats, sophomore Monica Bisordi broke out of a two-meet slump with a solid all-around performance. The San Mateo, Calif. native posted an all-around score of 39.325, to break the eight-year-old Cat Classic record mark of 39.300 and top eight other all-arounders to win her third all-around title of the season. Bisordi tied for first place on beam with a career-high tying mark of 9.925, which also tied the Cat Classic beam record, tied for third place on bars (9.825) and fifth place on floor (9.800).

In her only event of the meet, freshman Abby Pearson won her first-career vault title with a career-high 9.875. Junior Andi McCabe tied for second place on vault (9.850). Arizona received two other strong bar performances from sophomore Jamie Duce and junior Sheehan Lemley. Duce posted a bars score of 9.850 to tie for second in the event and Lemley tied for third place on bars with a mark of 9.825.

Cat Classic Individual Championships: Sophomore Monica Bisordi tied for a share of the floor title and freshman Abby Pearson won a share of the vault title, as seven University of Arizona gymnasts competed in the 23rd Annual State Farm Cat Classic individual championships on Saturday, Feb. 8 in front of a crowd of 2523 in Missouri's Hearnes Center.

Bisordi, Pearson, juniors Sheehan Lemley and Andi McCabe, and sophomores Jamie Duce, Kristine Harper and Katie Johnson combined for two individual titles and seven top-five finishes for Arizona.

Monica Bisordi led the way for the Wildcats, posting a mark of 9.900 to tie for first place on floor. Bisordi also tied for second place on bars (9.775) and tied for fifth on beam (9.250). Jamie Duce tied for second place honors with Bisordi on bars (9.775) and Kristine Harper tied Bisordi on beam to share fifth place honors (9.250).

After a first-place vault finish on Friday night, Abby Pearson duplicated her career-high performance by posting another 9.875 on vault to share first-place honors. Pearson, Arizona's most consistent gymnast on vault thus far, walks away from the Cat Classic with her first two career vault titles. Andi McCabe landed a vault score of 9.800 to take fourth place in the event. Katie Johnson finished with a 9.200 on beam and Sheehan Lemley posted a 9.275 on bars for Arizona.

With two titles on Saturday night, Arizona now owns 43 Cat Classic individual titles in 17 appearances to the 'feline frenzy.'

About the Utah Utes: The University of Utah Utes (3-2) enter Friday's meet as the No. 2 ranked team in the nation, owning a meet average of 196.985. Utah is ranked second in the nation on beam (49.295), No. 3 on bars (49.260), No. 5 on floor (49.310) and sixth in the nation on vault (49.120). The Utes are led by junior Melissa Vituj, ranked No. 7 in the nation in the all-around (39.525) and No. 2 on floor (9.955), and senior Theresa Kulikowski, the nation's top gymnast on bars (9.975). Utah returns six gymnasts from last year's squad, including five All-Americans. Head coach Greg Marsden enters his 28th year at the helm of the Utah program, owning a career record of 767-121-5 and an unprecedented 10 national championships.

No Love: Although Friday's meet falls on Valentine's Day, don't expect Arizona or Utah to hand out any cards or candy to each other. Friday's meet will mark the 48th meeting between the two schools, with Utah owning a perfect 47-0 record against the Wildcats. Arizona is 0-8 against Utah in Tucson and 0-16 versus the Utes during the regular season.

A First for Everything: Even though Arizona has never defeated Utah, the Utes have already lost a couple of perfect streaks this season to a couple of Pac-10 teams. On Jan. 10, Utah lost at home for the first time in 23 years to UCLA, 197.225-196.750. Prior to that loss, Utah had not lost at home in 170 consecutive meets, the longest home winning streak in collegiate sports history. On Jan. 24, Arizona State defeated Utah in a dual meet, 197.450-197.150, handing Utah its second-straight home loss of the season. Utah had not lost two-straight home dual meets since 1976.

Last Season: Arizona and Utah faced off last season on Jan. 18 in Salt Lake City, Utah. The Utes defeated the Wildcats, 196.100-197.150, handing Arizona its first loss of the 2002 season. Arizona's mark of 196.100 in the loss ranks as its ninth-best team score in school history. The Wildcats and Utes meet up again at the 2002 NCAA Championships in Tuscaloosa, Ala., where Arizona placed 11th (194.975) and Utah finished fourth (196.775) respectively.

A High Low: Arizona posted a mark of 194.575 on Friday night to finish third at the 23rd Annual State Farm Cat Classic. Although it was Arizona's lowest output of the season, the score ranked as the fifth-best mark in Cat Classic history.

Back on Track: Sophomore Monica Bisordi returned to normality at the Cat Classic this past weekend. After a two-meet slump, Bisordi posted an all-around score of 39.325, to break the eight-year-old Cat Classic record mark of 39.300 and top eight other all-arounders to win her third all-around title of the season. Bisordi tied for first place on beam with a career-high tying mark of 9.925, which also tied the Cat Classic beam record, tied for third place on bars (9.825) and fifth place on floor (9.800). In the individual championships, Bisordi led the way for the Wildcats, posting a mark of 9.900 to tie for first place on floor. Bisordi also tied for second place on bars (9.775) and tied for fifth on beam (9.250).

Doubling Up: The Cat Classic vault was owned by freshman Abby Pearson, who won two individual vault titles in two days in Columbia, Mo. After a first-place vault finish on Friday night, Abby Pearson duplicated her career-high performance by posting another 9.875 on vault to share first-place honors. Pearson tallied her first two career vault titles in Missouri.

Against Ranked Opponents: On Friday, Arizona will face another ranked opponent. So far this season, Arizona is 3-2 versus ranked opponents and is 1-1 against ranked foes at home.

Stacked Pac: With a No. 13 national ranking, Arizona is fifth in the Pac-10 Conference standings, owning a 1-2 conference record. Arizona is joined by No. 1 UCLA, No. 7 Arizona State, No. 8 Stanford, No. 9 Oregon State and No. 14 Washington among the nation's top-25 teams.

Live Stats: Live stats will be available for Friday night's meet at Utah's official website, www.utahutes.com.

Cats on the Radio: The Arizona Gymnastics team will make a series of guest appearances to two Tucson radio stations throughout the season. On every Thursday before a home meet, the Wildcats can be heard on KiiM-FM Tucson's Country Leader's early morning show. On each Wednesday, the Cats will join Rich Herrera on Fox Sports Radio 1290 AM.

Up Next: Arizona will travel to Los Angeles to take on Pac-10 rival UCLA on Sunday, Feb. 23 at 2 p.m. (PST).

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