One of Arizona's most consistent all-around athletes, senior Aubree Cristello is a workhorse in every aspect of life and acts as a model for the rest of the team
Jan. 8, 2013 - Jessie Butler
Over the past three years, senior gymnast Aubree Cristello has established herself as a talented all-around gymnast. In fact, Cristello has racked up 29 number one finishes in her career so far, with ten of those being in the all-around.
Cristello’s consistency began her freshman season when she hit 49 out of 51 competed routines. As a sophomore, Cristello kept the ball rolling with six event titles and a nod from the conference as Pac-10 gymnast of the week.
She didn’t stop there: in her most recent season, Cristello posted two all-around scores of 39.475, earning herself a spot in the Arizona record-books for top-ten all-time performances. The then junior also earned her third consecutive 1st team all-Pac-12 accolade and was one of two Wildcats to qualify to the NCAA Championships.
As successful as her career has been thus far, Cristello wants more: she wants to leave Arizona Gymnastics with multiple titles and a return to the NCAA Championships. The motivation for all of this? To achieve the one thing she has yet to do: earn the title of All-American.
“I’ve always had the goal of becoming an All-American in the back of my mind,” Cristello said. “I want to not only be all-conference, but I want to finally achieve All-American because it’s something I haven’t been able to do before. This is my last year to do it.”
As part of her preparation to achieve this goal, Cristello is doing everything in her power to show her team the road to success. The senior leader shows to her team the power of working out year-round in hopes of preventing injury. Cristello participates in not only summer workouts but also spends extra time doing cardio and maintains a healthy diet.
“I am in the training room as much as possible to stay fit, and I eat healthy,” Cristello said. “I also do extra cardio to make sure I am staying in shape for the upcoming season.”
Cristello’s experience and maturity on the team allows her to not only help herself as an individual but also to lead her team. Because of her individual expectations, she leads her team to have higher expectations for themselves through her example. One person who has seen this since the start of Cristello’s career at Arizona is head coach Bill Ryden.
“If lead by example means anything, that’s her. She works harder than the average and does a lot more,” Ryden said. “She carries her heart on her sleeve. You always know that she is nothing less than fully invested in everything she is doing.”
As motivated as Cristello is to have athletic success, her drive is not one-sided. In more situations than not, being a jack of all trades means being a master in none. However, for Cristello this is not the case. After earning the title of Academic All-American for the 2012 season, she is determined to repeat her success for a second consecutive year.
“I’ve always been a good student, and I try to maintain my grades as best as I can in the classroom,” Cristello said on the importance of academics. “It has constantly been important to me.”
Cristello is currently pursuing a marketing degree through the prestigious Eller School of Management, which is one of the university’s most prominent colleges. With the semester in full swing, Cristello has much more on her plate than in the past.
“This year is harder for me because I’ve started with Eller. I like to challenge myself, but I am definitely a lot busier,” Cristello said.
With a busy schedule and having the requirement of making time for athletics and academics, Cristello does not look at any one part being more important than the other.
“Even though this semester has a lot more to it, being successful in two different places doesn’t take away from one or the other,” Cristello said. “I can focus on the gym when I’m not in class and I can focus on academics when I’m not in the gym. I’ve learned time management from being a student-athlete, and it has definitely helped me to stay on track in the gym and in the classroom.”
With her progress toward a degree soon coming to a finale, Ryden believes that the accomplishments that Cristello has made thus far will help her not only in her final season but also in her post-Arizona career.
“Being out in the business world and having to fight for what you want, she’s been brought up in that environment. She has an incredible work ethic and she’s not afraid to work,” Ryden said. “She’s not afraid to do what it takes. She’s going to be incredibly successful in whatever she sets her mind to.”
Without reasonable doubt, Cristello manages her time to succeed in both athletics and academics. Her devotion to success gives her an extra push, while her dedication and work ethic provide her team with a role model for the upcoming season.