Feb. 24, 2010
This week the No. 20 Gymcats head out west to Lincoln, Neb. to compete in the annual “Master’s Classic” hosted by the University of Nebraska. This will the Wildcat’s first appearance in this meet since 1992. The team will be up against No. 11 Nebraska, No. 18 Denver and No. 25 West Virginia. This will be the first quad meet of the season for Arizona. Live coverage of the meet as well as live stats will be provided courtesy of Huskers.com.
Despite a loss to No. 1 Alabama 197.25 to 195.100, the Wildcats greatly improved their scores and overall performance from previous meets. The team also scored a number of career highs both for individuals and team events.
Highlights of the meet included a team high score of 49.225 on vault, as well as sophomore Talyn Curry earning a career high on the event with a 9.850. Sophomore Deanna Graham earned a new career high as well, with a score of 9.90 on the floor.
Despite having to count a fall on the beam, the team ended up with a team total of 48.250 once again led by freshman Molly Quirk with a 9.800 on the event.
“There were a lot of positives about this meet.” Head Coach Bill Ryden said, “It was another great step in the right direction. The meet as a whole also showed that we are definitely ready to compete at a national level.”
Against the World:
Throughout the season so far the Gymcats have had success on the road, earning some of their highest scores in competitions far from home. This week against was no exception with the Gymcats earning their second highest team total of the season – 195.100. What was different about this particular away meet, however, was how large the crowd actually was. The Alabama and Arizona gymnastics teams entertained a sold out crowd of over 15,000 fans.
“It was exciting to compete in front of such a large crowd,” said Ryden, “It definitely made the meet a lot of fun to compete at.”
Scouting the Opposition:
Last week No. 11 Nebraska earned 2nd place at the Sweetheart Invitational against North Carolina and North Carolina State. Highlights included Erin Davis earning her fifth vault title with a 9.95, as well as Maria Scaffidi earning a season high on bars with a 9.825.
No. 18 Denver defeated the Air Force Academy 193.900-191.725 led by senior Kelley Hennigan who won the all-around with a 39.025. The team also tied their season high beam score of 49.00 led by junior Taylor Sanford and Kelley Hennigan who both earned scores of 9.825, followed by freshman Simona Castro Lazo who earned her career high on the event with a score of 9.800.
No. 25 West Virginia currently hold a record of 11-5 and will be coming off of a five week hiatus to compete in this weekend’s meet. This week two of West Virginia’s gymnasts earned EAGL accolades for their performances. Senior Chelsi Tabor and Freshman Chelsea Goldschrafe earned East Atlantic Gymnastics League Specialist and Rookie of the Week (respectively).
What's Coming Up:
The Gymcats come back to Tucson, to host the Washington Huskies. The meet will take place in the McKale Center on Friday, Mar. 5 at 7 p.m. Can’t make it to McKale? Follow the team online via free live stats, or live video feed for All-Access subscribers.
The Wildcats completed the 2009 season with an overall record of 12-12 and were able to make their 23rd consecutive NCAA post-season appearance. Thanks to a pristine floor exercise performance, then Junior Sarah Tomcyzk was able to take it one step further and competed floor at the NCAA National Championships. In addition, three Gymcats earned All-Conference accolades, including freshman Deanna Graham (2nd Team Vault), freshman Rebecca Cardenas (2nd Team Floor), and redshirt junior Sarah Tomczyk (1st Team Floor).
Look Out for New Gymcats:
Arizona bolsters a fairly young team, including four fresh new faces. These include: Aubree Cristello from Glenville, NY, Mykle Douglas from Plano, TX, Ellen Pitluck from Chicago, IL, and Molly Quirk from Glenmont, NY.
The Arizona Gymcats head into the season ranked No. 20 in the 2010 Women's Pre-Season Coaches poll. They are one of only five Pac-10 schools to be rated. The others include No. 4 UCLA, No. 7 Stanford, No 10 Oregon State, and No. 25 Washington. Arizona State was listed as another team receiving votes for consideration.
Arizona faces an extremely stacked schedule this season, competing against nine schools ranked in the pre-season poll. This includes some tough meets early on, including opening the season against No. 8 Arkansas, then No. 7 Stanford immediately after. The Gymcats must also take on No. 5 UCLA, No. 10 Oregon State, No. 3 Alabama, No. 15 Nebraska, No. 21 West Virginia, No. 22 Minnesota, and No. 25 Washington.
Pac-10 Championships in the Desert:
Arizona will have the honor of hosting the Pac-10 Championships on March 27 at 4 p.m. The last time the Wildcats hosted the championships was in 2004. Tickets are available for purchase through the McKale Center Ticket Office.