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Gymnastics To Close Out Regular Season In Beehive State Against BYU, So. Utah
Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
Release: 03/23/2007
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Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
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Arizona Gymnastics Meet Notes

vs. Brigham Young, Southern Utah

March 23, 2007

 

What’s on Tap: The No. 14 Arizona women’s gymnastics team (11-3) will travel to Provo, Utah, to compete against host Brigham Young and Southern Utah. The meet is set to begin at 7 p.m. (MDT) in the Marriott Center.

 

The Rankings: Arizona enters competition this week ranked No. 14 in the country, with a RQS of 195.8555. In individual events, UA ranks tied for No. 9 on floor (49.165), No. 14 on beam (48.895), No. 19 on bars (48.910) and No. 18 on vault (49.010). The Wildcats were tabbed as the No. 16 team in the nation according to the preseason coaches’ poll. Arizona has been ranked in the Top 25 in 82 of the last 83 polls, including 33 straight. Individually, Karin Wurm ranks No. 10 in the nation on bars, with an RQS of 9.890 and No. 25 in the all-around (39.190). Additionally, Danielle Hicks ranks No. 22 on beam (9.860).

 

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.  From Jan. 15-Feb. 12, teams were ranked by their total season average.  Since Feb. 19, teams and gymnasts are being 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. 

 

This Week’s Rotations:

 

 

Rotation I

Rotation II

Rotation III

Rotation IV

BYU

Vault

Bars

Beam

Floor

Arizona

Bars

Beam

Floor

Vault

So. Utah

Beam

Floor

Vault

Bars

 

A Look at the Cougars: BYU holds a Regional Qualifying Score (RQS) of 194.440 and checks in at No. 26 in this week’s national rankings. The Cougars are ranked No. 17 on balance beam with Dayna Smart ranked No. 13 on the event. Alethea Boon is ranked No. 25 on vault. Last week in Denver, Boon picked up the first all-around title of her career while helping BYU to its second-highest floor score of the season at 48.925. Smart had strong routines on both vault and floor, while Hayley Jensen recorded a career best on beam. Freshmen Heidi Poulson and Danielle Goldman also recorded career highs on floor.

 

A Look at the Thunderbirds: SUU enters competition this week coming off a season-best performance last weekend. The Thunderbirds recorded a 195.175 in a victory against Boise State and are competing with Iowa and Utah State for the last spot in the North Central Regional. SUU has an RQS of 193.775 and is led by Leah Sakhitab, Elise Wheeeler, Shayla Garcia and Jess Langley.

 

Side-by-Side: Arizona and this week’s opponents event-by-event comparison based on 2007 season averages:

 

 

Vault

Bars

Beam

Floor

Total

Arizona

49.000

48.695

48.698

49.043

195.435

BYU

48.564

48.327

48.471

48.543

193.905

SUU

48.127

48.466

47.936

48.230

192.759

 

Arizona and this week’s opponents event-by-event comparison by season high score:

 

 

Vault

Bars

Beam

Floor

Total

Arizona

49.450

49.100

49.400

49.425

196.650

BYU

49.050

48.975

49.125

48.975

195.475

SUU

48.825

48.800

49.400

49.200

195.175

 

Arizona Head Coach: Bill Ryden is in his ninth season at the helm of the Arizona gymnastics program, owning a school and career record of 119-121-3. Last season, he joined Jim Gault as the second coach to surpass 100 career coaching victories at Arizona. Ryden made his first appearance as a head coach at the NCAA Championships in 2002, the program’s first appearance since 1996.  In 2002, Ryden also 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. Additionally, Ryden has coached in 16 Pac-10 Championships, 14 NCAA Championships and 16 NCAA Regional meets. Ryden has also trained 12 All-Americans and 18 All-Pac-10 gymnasts in his tenure at Arizona.

 

Ryden Closing in on .500: Bill Ryden is closing in on the .500 mark as a head coach for the first time since his second year as head coach in 2000. In his first season, he guided the Wildcats to a 14-10-1 record, but UA struggled to a 7-19 record the following season. If the Wildcats knock off both BYU and Southern Utah this weekend, Ryden will again reach the .500 winning percentage mark as a head coach.

 

Into the Record Books: The 2007 squad is making sure it will be on to remember for sometime in UA gymnastics history. Not since 2004 has a Wildcat team set as many team and individual Top 10 marks as this one in ’07. To date, the Wildcats have set nine individual marks and three team event scores that rank in the Top 10 all-time at Arizona.

 

            Team

·        Arizona’s team floor score of 49.425 on March 16 ranks tied for seventh all-time.

·        Arizona’s beam score of 49.400 on March 16 ranks second all-time.

·        Arizona’s vault score of 49.450 on March 9 ranks fifth all-time.

Individual

·        Brittney Morgan’s 9.975 on vault at N.C. State on March 9 ranks fifth all-time.

·        Jamie Holton’s floor score of 9.950 on March 16 ranks tied for fifth all-time.

·        Danielle Hicks’ floor score of 9.925 on March 16 ranks tied for seventh all-time.

·        Karin Wurm’s 9.925 on bars against OSU on Jan. 26 ranks tied for eighth all-time.

·        Danielle Hicks’ has twice scored a 9.900 on beam, a score which ranks tied for ninth all-time.

·        Miranda Russell and Brittney Morgan each earned 9.900s on beam on March 16, putting them in a tie for ninth all-time in the event.

·        Karin Wurm’s all-around total of 39.400 on March 16 matches her career high, which ranks tied for eighth all-time at Arizona.

·        Brittney Morgan’s 39.350 all-around total on March 9 ranks tied for ninth all-time.

 

Opponents, Mark Your Calendar: While the regular season is winding down, Brigham Young and Southern Utah still have the opportunity to capitalize on competing against the Wildcats, who have developed a knack for bringing out the best in their opponents. Beginning with UA’s February 2 contest with Minnesota and continuing through last week (seven meets and 11 total opponents), six opponents have established a new season high team score the night they have gone up against the Wildcats. Below are each of the occasions:

 

Date                 Team                           Previous High              New High         Difference

Feb. 2               Minnesota                     194.400                        195.125            + 0.725

Feb. 9               at Washington              193.850                        193.925            + 0.075

March 2            at California                  193.025                        193.750            + 0.725

March 9            at N.C. State                 194.625                        196.150            + 1.525

March 9            vs. William & Mary        187.700                        189.650            + 1.950

March 16          Penn State                    196.450                        196.825            + 0.375            

 

Where was the Deduction? Freshman Brittney Morgan nearly became a member of the exclusive 10.0 club last week, when she earned a 9.975 on vault. Morgan received a 10.0 from one judge, but the second judge found a small flaw, worthy of awarding a 9.95. Even so, Morgan scored a 9.975, the fifth highest mark in UA history on vault. The score ranks behind previous 10.0 scores from Anna Balsadua, Heidi Hornbeek, Andi McCabe and Abby Pearson.

 

Morgan Honored: Brittney Morgan was named Pac-10 Gymnast of the Week for March 6-12. Morgan, a 5-2 freshman, led Arizona in its thrilling comeback victory last week in a quadrangular meet hosted by No. 22 North Carolina State.  Morgan totaled a career-best 39.350 in the all-around, a season high for a UA gymnast, helping Arizona to its top road score of the year (196.150), while defeating the Wolfpack (196.125), William & Mary (189.650) and James Madison (186.200). Arizona trailed the Wolfpack by 0.275 points heading to vault in the final rotation, but Morgan helped lead the Wildcats to their best vault score since 2004. Morgan turned in a 9.975, capturing the vault title, as the Wildcats scored a 49.450 as a team to overtake the Wolfpack. A native of Charlottesville, Va., Morgan tallied the second-highest mark of her career on beam, earning a share of second place with a 9.825. She added a 9.775 on bars to share fifth-place honors, and chipped in a 9.775 on floor to help lead UA to a 49.150 in the event. On the season, Morgan leads Arizona on vault with an average score of 9.833, and has placed in the top five in the event seven times, claiming the individual title three times. Additionally, she is second on the team with a 9.772 average on beam.

 

Impressive Start: Arizona’s 11-3 record to start the ?'07 season is best start for a Wildcat squad since the 1996 season, when the Wildcats accumulated a record of 20-2 to start the year en route to a berth in the NCAA Championships.

 

Comeback Cats: While some UA opponents have had success posting season highs, few opponents have had success holding off the Wildcats, as is indicative by UA’s 11-3 record. However, the Wildcats have allowed several foes gain leads early in meets, before UA has overtaken them in the final rotations. Below are descriptions and results of UA’s four come-from-behind victories in either the third or fourth rotation:

 

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