Greg Byrne's Wildcat Wednesday
Wildcats to Begin Home Season in Rivalry Meet
By: Arizona Athletics
Release: January 17, 2011
Photo Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
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Jan. 17, 2011

What’s Up:

Arizona begins its home season, playing host to in-state rival Arizona State for a point in the State Farm Territorial Cup competition. The meet will take place on January 21 at 7:00 p.m. in the McKale Center.

For those who are unable to make the meet, live stats will be available as well as a live video feed of the meet for All-Access members.

Last Week:

The Wildcats spent a weekend in Logan, Utah, in their first tri-meet of the season. The team took second place with a team score of 192.750 behind BYU with a 193.075 and ahead of Utah State with a 192.000.

Stars for the Cats included: sophomore Mykle Douglas, sophomore Molly Quirk and senior Miranda Russell.

Douglas led the Arizona vault team, posting a career high score of 9.825 to tie for first on the event. This was only the second time Douglas has ever officially competed vault for the Cats.

Quirk hit bars with a bang after being re-added to the lineup. Posting a career high score of 9.775, Quirk may have earned herself a spot in the lineup this week as well.

Russell came back to form on the bars as well, earning the highest score on the event with a 9.850.

Questions for Coach:

Each week, head gymnastics coach Bill Ryden sits down to talk with us to analyze the previous week’s meet. This Coach’s Show is available for free via the All-Access tab on the website.

This season Ryden is entertaining questions from the public. If you have any questions you would like to ask Coach Ryden – from the type of grips the girl’s like to use to meet questions – e-mail them to the gymnastics SID Valery Meusburger at Then, watch for your questions in the weekly Coach’s Show!

Season Debuts:

Junior Rebecca Cardenas entered yet another lineup this past week, competing for Arizona on floor. Cardenas, who was recognized by being named to the 2nd Team All-Conference for the event in 2009, earned a score of 9.675.

Scouting the Opposition:

The last meet that Arizona State competed in was the Pac-10 Preview, earning a team score of 191.850. ASU’s best event appears to be vault, posting a team total of 48.750. Sun Devil’s to watch include Mary Atkinson, who earned a score of 9.850 on the event, followed closely by Beate Jones and Sammie Seaman with twin scores of 9.800.

2010 Review:

The Wildcats completed the 2010 season with an overall record of 12-12 and were able to make their 24th consecutive NCAA post-season appearance. Finishing fourth at the Pac-10 Championships, and third at the NCAA Regional Championships, Arizona completed the season ranked No. 20 in the nation. Then sophomore Deanna Graham stepped up throughout the season to be a major contributor to the team, as well as the lone Wildcat to qualify for the NCAA National Championships. Graham also earned 1st team All-Conference Honors in the all-around for her performances.

Other break out performances included then freshmen Aubree Cristello and Molly Quirk.

Cristello earned her place as one of the Wildcats’ most consistent gymnasts; competing 12 out of 13 meets in the all-around, and hitting 49 of 51 total routines. Cristello also earned Pac-10 1st team All-Conference Honors for the all-around, with a career best score of 39.175.

Quirk rose to the challenge of becoming beam star, earning a score of 9.90 against Washington, and posting seven scores of 9.80 or above on the event. Hitting 51 of 52 routines competed as well as a high all-around score of 39.100, Quirk was yet another Wildcat to be honored with a spot on the Pac-10 All-Conference 1st team.

Look Out for New GymCats:

Arizona added a number of new faces this season, including Barbara Donaldson out of Bakersfield, Calif., Chelsea Perna hailing from Middletown, Del., Phoenix native Shana Sangston, Ali Stakem from Gaithersburg, Md., and Jordan Williams from Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.

Pre-season Rankings:

The Arizona Gymcats head into the season ranked No. 19 in the 2010 Women’s Pre-Season Coaches poll. They are one of six Pac-10 schools to be rated. The others include No. 1 UCLA, No. 6 Stanford, No. 8 Oregon State, No. 21 Washington, and No. 25 Arizona State.

Stacked Schedule:

Arizona faces a stacked schedule this season, competing against six schools ranked in the pre-season poll. This includes some tough meets early on, including opening the season against a powerfully ranked Pac-10, and meeting up with these teams to conclude the regular season in the Pac-10 Championships. Other ranked meets include facing No. 25 Arizona State early on in the season, and a dual meet against No. 18 Boise State. The Gymcats must also go head to head with No. 1 UCLA, and No. 6 Stanford.

Ryden’s Record:

Head Coach Bill Ryden earned a total record of 164-164-3 after the tri-meet in Utah.

What’s Coming Up:

The GymCats continue to homestead, hosting the Boise State Broncos on Friday, January 28 at 7:00 p.m.



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