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No. 12 Arizona Gymnastics Takes On No. 7 Oklahoma
Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
Release: 03/04/2002
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Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
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March 4, 2002

What's Coming Up - The No. 12 University of Arizona women's gymnastics team (8-4, 3-3 Pac- 10) travels to Norman, Okla., to battle the No. 7 Oklahoma Sooners (10-2) Sunday March 10, at 2 p.m. (CST), in the Lloyd Nobel Center. Arizona edged Oklahoma earlier this season at the Maui Invitational (1/4), where the Wildcats finished in first place (194.650) over the second place Sooners (194.425). Arizona is coming off its third Pac-10 loss of the season, as the Cats fell to the No. 15 Arizona State Sun Devils, 197.850- 196.700, on March 1, in Wells Fargo Arena.

Last Time Out - The No. 12 University of Arizona women's gymnastics team fell to No. 15 Arizona State, 197.850- 196.700, on March 1, in front of a crowd of 818 in Wells Fargo Arena. The Wildcat's mark of 196.700 is the second-highest team score in school history. Arizona tied Arizona State on vault, posting a new school record of 49.475 in the event. The Wildcats posted their ninth-best mark in school history on floor (49.275), their second-highest team score of the season on bars (49.000) and their 10th best mark in school history on beam (48.950). Five Wildcat gymnasts - Nikki Beyschau, Monica Bisordi, Stevie Fanning, Katie Johnson and Randi Liljenquist - each set or tied season-high and career-high marks in Friday's meet.

Individually for the Wildcats, senior Randi Liljenquist posted two new school records and three career-highs against the Sun Devils. Liljenquist finished first in the all-around with a new school record and career-high mark of 39.775, and tied for first on beam with a school record and career-high score of 10.000. She also tied for first on vault with a career-high 9.950 and finished third on bars (9.875). Liljenquist's mark on beam was the first 10.000 on beam in school history, and was her second-career 10.000 score, her first being a 10.000 score on floor against Michigan on March 3, 2000.

Freshman Monica Bisordi finished second in the all-around (39.075), tied for fifth place on bars with a career-high 9.800, and tied for fourth on beam with a career-high 9.925, which is the third-highest score in school history. Freshman Stevie Fanning tied for fifth place on bars (9.800).

Sophomore Andi McCabe tied for third on vault (9.925), and freshman Katie Johnson tied for fourth on floor (9.900) and finished seventh on beam with a career-high 9.900, which is the sixth highest mark in team history.

Scouting Oklahoma - The No. 7 Oklahoma Sooners enter Friday's meet with a 10-2 overall record. This season, the Sooners rank second in the South Central Region ahead of the Wildcats, and the team's season-high total for the year is 197.000. Oklahoma's regional qualifying score is 196.345. The Sooners rank No. 8 nationally on vault, No. 8 on bars, No. 8 on beam and No. 3 on floor. Oklahoma has posted wins over No. 4 Michigan, Sacramento State, No. 24 Ohio State, Texas Women's University, No. 16 Florida, Boise State, No. 25 Missouri, Centenary, Southern Utah and No. 10 Iowa State. The Sooners only loses this season have come against No. 12 Arizona and No. 1 Georgia. Oklahoma has eight returning letterwinners and five freshman newcomers. Head Coach Steve Nunno (Massachusetts, 1979) is in his first year at the helm of the Oklahoma program.

Wildcats in the Rankings - Arizona began the 2002 season ranked No. 17 in the preseason coaches' poll. After posting a score of 196.700 against No. 15 Arizona State (3/1), the Cats remain the No. 12-ranked team in the nation. The Wildcat's regional qualifying score (RQS) is 195.570. Arizona remains third in the South Central Region behind No. 2 Oklahoma and No. 1 Nebraska. Arizona is the No. 2 team in the nation on vault, No. 9 on floor, No. 19 on bars and No. 24 on beam. Individually for the Wildcats, senior Randi Liljenquist is ranked No. 14 in the nation on vault, No. 10 on beam, No. 7 in the all-around and is tied with a No. 3 ranking on floor. Freshman Katie Johnson is tied with Liljenquist with a No. 3 national ranking on floor and sophomore Andi McCabe is ranked No. 5 on vault. Freshman Monica Bisordi is ranked No. 22 in the nation on vault and No. 15 on beam.

Regional Qualifying Score - Arizona has been able to hold a No. 12 national ranking due to its regional qualifying score (RQS). Since Feb. 25, all collegiate women's gymnastic teams have been ranked according to their 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 highest score is dropped and the remaining five scores are averaged.

Getting The Job Done - Although the Wildcats are 0-4 on the road this season, Arizona's top-three team scores this year have come away from McKale Center. Arizona posted its second-highest score in team history (196.700) at No. 17 Arizona State (3/1), its fifth-highest score in team history (196.100) at No. 5 Utah (1/18) and its eighth-highest score in team history (195.625) at No. 14 Oregon State (2/15). Arizona has also posted a team record on vault (49.475) at No. 17 Arizona State (3/1) and a team record on beam (49.325) at No. 5 Utah (1/18).

Changing the Record Book - Arizona has posted a top-10 individual or team mark in each meet this season. On Friday (3/1) against No. 15 Arizona State, the Wildcats set a new team record on vault with a score of 49.475, and posted their ninth-best mark in school history on floor (49.275), their second-highest team score of the season on bars (49.000) and their 10th best mark in school history on beam (48.950). The Wildcats also posted their second-highest team score in school history (196.700). Arizona has posted 19 new top-10 team marks this season. Individually for the Wildcats, senior Randi Liljenquist posted two new school records against the Sun Devils (3/1). Liljenquist set a new school record and career-high mark of 39.775 in the all-around, and a school record and career-high score of 10.000 on beam. Liljenquist's mark on beam was the first 10.000 on beam in school history, and was her second-career 10.000 score, her first being a 10.000 score on floor against Michigan on March 3, 2000. Five Wildcat gymnasts - Monica Bisordi, Stevie Fanning, Katie Johnson, Randi Liljenquist and Andi McCabe - have set or tied top-10 individual marks for Arizona this season.

Bill Ryden's Weekly Analysis - "Oklahoma has improved greatly since our first meeting earlier in the season. They (Oklahoma) are much more consistent and have become a very good team on beam. I feel that we match up well against them. In all of our meets, we need to do our job as a team in every event. We are still working on beam and bars, but I feel our team on floor and on vault can compete with anyone."

A Look Ahead - Arizona returns home for its final home meet of the season against No. 9 Minnesota, Northern Illinois and Washington, on Thursday, March 14, at 7:30 p.m. (MST).

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