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Wildcats Set to Host the Huskies
Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
Release: 01/30/2014
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Kristin Klarenbach
Courtesy: Arizona Athletics

No. 13 Arizona vs Washington

Saturday, Feb. 1 // 4 p.m. (MST)

Tucson, Ariz.

Video Steaming:  http://pac-12.com/videos/university-arizona

Live Stats: http://athletics.arizona.edu/gymstats/20140201.htm

TUCSON, Ariz. – The No. 13 Arizona Women’s gymnastics team will be back in McKale center Saturday Feb. 1 at 4 p.m. MST to host The Washington Huskies for their second home meet of the season.

“We are excited,” head coach Bill Ryden said. “It is our second home meet, and we are only at home five times a season so we know we want to cherish those moments. We feel good. It is a day by day situation with our injured athletes, but everybody can see that we are a very deep team due to how we rebounded last meet. We are still going to put out a very good team despite injuries and I expect them to rise to the occasion. It is always a little more intense when you are competing against someone within the conference, and we are really looking forward to it.”

Last Saturday the GymCats fell to No. 1 ranked Oklahoma (196.925-197.575) in a meet where the GymCats posted their best final score since February 23, 2004.

Live stats and streaming will be available the day of the competition. There will also be updates on Facebook.com/ArizonaGymnastics and on Twitter @AZGymnastics.

Scouting the Opposition:

The Washington Huskies finished fifth last year in the Pac-12, and beat Arizona, 196.025-195.200. They had a regular season record of 4-4-1 and featured five seniors including Lauren Rogers who made first-team all-conference. This year, the Huskies feature six freshmen and one senior, Aliza Vaccher. They are coached by Joanne Bowers who has brought her team to the NCAA regionals all seven years she has been there. Washington is coming off of a win against Seattle Pacific last Friday.

2013 Arizona Review:

The Wildcats completed the 2013 season with a season record of 17-15 and advanced to their 27th consecutive NCAA Regional Championships. Finishing sixth, overall, at the Pac-12 Championships and third in the NCAA Regional Championships, Arizona rounded out the season ranked No. 17 in the nation.

Arizona was led by senior Aubree Cristello, who was the lone qualifier to the NCAA National Championships for all-around. Cristello was one of the team’s top all-around athletes, tying her career-high 39.475 three times as well as finishing her career with 2001.250 points, the second highest in program history.

Numerous freshmen stepped up despite roster injuries including Jessie Sisler and Shelby Edwards. Both freshmen received at least one Pac-12 Freshman/Newcomer of the Week award during the season. Sisler recorded a career-high 9.925, giving her one of the top program scores on floor. Edwards provided depth on beam recording scores despite an elbow injury that required her to perform an armless routine.

 

Look Out for New GymCats:

The Wildcats added a number of new faces this season, including two Arizona natives, Krysten Howard out of Phoenix and Selynna Felix-Terrazas from Tucson. Gabby Laub hails from Owasso, Okla., while Mackenzie Valentin comes from MustangOkla. Also added to the roster is former gymnastics manager and Plano, Texas, native Shay Fox. All of these gymnasts were top J.O. competitors and should make an immediate impact in the lineups this season.

 

Pre-season Rankings:

The Arizona gymnastics team heads into the season ranked No. 17 in the 2014 Women’s Pre-Season Coaches poll. The Wildcats are one of eight Pac-12 schools to place within the top 25, including No. 4 UCLA, No. 6 Utah, No. 9 Stanford, No. 12 Oregon State, No. 20 Washington, No. 22 California and No. 25 Arizona State.

Complete pre-season rankings can be found here: http://www.troester.com/gym/Wrankings/2014/WcoachesPoll.htm

Stacked to the Max:

The Arizona gymnastics team is going to compete against one of the toughest schedules in the nation. According to RoadtoNationals.com, Arizona’s strength of schedule is ranked No. 8. Of the 12 regular season meets and 16 regular season opponents, the Cats will face eight ranked teams. Those opponents include No. 3 Oklahoma, No. 4 UCLA, No. 5 LSU, No. 6 Utah, No. 9 Stanford, No. 12 Oregon State, No. 20 Washington, No. 21 Kentucky and No. 25 ASU.

 

Ryden’s Record:

Head coach Bill Ryden finished out the 2013 season with an overall even record of 220-198-3.

 

What’s Coming Up:

The Wildcats will return to McKale for their second conference meet of the season against No. 21 Washington on Saturday, Feb. 1 at 4 p.m. MST. 

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