UW Hosts NCAA West Regional Championship

April 10, 2003

Seattle - The 11th-ranked Washington women's gymnastics team (18-9) will play host to the 2003 NCAA West Regional Championship at Bank of America Arena at Hec Edmundson Pavilion on Saturday, April 12 at 5 p.m. The top two teams from the regional will advance to the NCAA Championships April 24-26 in Lincoln, Neb. Reserved tickets for the event are $12. General admission tickets are $8 for adults and $5 for UW students, youths 18-and-under and senior citizens. Tickets may be purchased at the UW Ticket Office during the week, online at www.gohuskies.com or Saturday starting at 4 p.m. at Bank of America Arena at Hec Edmundson Pavilion. There is no parking charge for this event.

Meet FormatThe NCAA Women's Gymnastics Championship includes six regional championships. Each NCAA Regional includes six teams, five all-around competitors (who are not on a qualifying team) and one individual event specialist per event. The top two teams and the top two all-around competitors (who are not on an advancing team) from each regional will receive an automatic berth to the national championships in Lincoln, Neb., April 24-26.

The six teams (listed in order of seed) competing at the NCAA West Regional are:

1. Nebraska2. Washington3. LSU4. Boise State5. Cal State Fullerton6. San Jose State

The six individual all-arounders and four event specialists competing are:

All-Around Competitors 1. Nirvana Zaher, Sacramento State2. Jessica Hoffman, Sacramento State3. Corrie McDaniel, Seattle Pacific4. Jesse Currie, Alaska Anchorage5. Mandi Burdick, Alaska Anchorage

Individual Event SpecialistsVault - Kimiye Narasaki, Sacramento StateUneven Bars - Melissa Stanton, Seattle PacificBalance Beam - Michelle Naito, UC DavisFloor Exercise - Tiffany Chan, UC Davis

Rotation OrderThere are six rotations during the NCAA West Regional Championship, including a bye before bars and a bye before floor. The rotation order was decided by a random draw.

   Vault          BYE              Bars             Beam            BYE             Floor1  LSU            CS Fullerton     San Jose State   Boise State     Nebraska        Washington   Hoffman, SAC   Zaher, SAC       Stanton, SPU     Burdick, AA     McDaniel, SPU   Currie, AA

2 Washington LSU CS Fullerton San Jose State Boise State Nebraska Currie, AA Hoffman, SAC Zaher, SAC Naito, UCD Burdick, AA

3 Nebraska Washington LSU CS Fullerton San Jose State Boise State McDaniel, SPU Currie, AA Hoffman, SAC Zaher, SAC Burdick, AA

4 Boise State Nebraska Washington LSU CS Fullerton San Jose State Burdick, AA McDaniel, SPU Currie, AA Hoffman, SAC Zaher, SAC Chan, UCD

5 San Jose State Boise State Nebraska Washington LSU CS Fullerton Narasaki, SAC Burdick, AA McDaniel, SPU Currie, AA Hoffman, SAC Zaher, SAC

6 CS Fullerton San Jose State Boise State Nebraska Washington LSU Zaher, SAC Burdick, AA McDaniel, SPU Currie, AA Hoffman, SAC

Individual Team Key: AA - Alaska; SAC-Sacramento State; SPU-Seattle Pacific, UCD-UC Davis

Dawgs Get Tough DrawThe Huskies face a tough challenge during the West Regional. Washington's draw sees the Huskies start on floor, end on beam and sit out the final rotation as one of their two byes during the six-rotation event. 'The scores generally go up as the meet progresses, so we have a real challenge because floor is typically our best event,' says UW head coach Bob Levesque. 'We're going to really have to get off to a quick start. Sitting out the final rotation is very difficult. It's what we drew and we'll have to make the best of it.'

Other Regional Pairings

North Central Region
April 12 at Salt Lake City, Utah
University of Utah

Teams

1. Stanford2. Utah3. California4. Brigham Young5. Denver6. Minnesota

South Central Region
April 12 at Columbia, Missouri
University of Missouri

Teams

1. UCLA2. Oregon State3. Iowa4. Arizona5. Missouri6. Illinois-Chicago

Central Region
April 12 at Tuscaloosa, Alabama
University of Alabama

Teams

1. Alabama2. Oklahoma3. Auburn4. Kent State5. Central Michigan6. Michigan State

Northeast Region
April 12 at Ann Arbor, Michigan
University of Michigan

Teams

1. Arizona State2. Michigan3. Iowa State4. New Hampshire5. Penn State6. Pittsburgh

Southeast Region
April 12 at Athens, Georgia
University of Georgia

Teams

1. Georgia2. Florida3. Ohio State4. North Carolina State5. North Carolina6. Maryland

West Regional Participants in the National RankingsNebraska is the top-ranked team competing at the NCAA West Regional. The Huskiers (197.585 RQS) are ranked second nationally in the most recent (March 31) GymInfo rankings. Washington (196.715) is ranked 11th, LSU (196.485) is 14th. Nebraska is ranked in the top four nationally in all four events. The Huskers are second on bars (49.445), third on vault (49.465) and floor (49.520) and fourth on beam (49.425). Washington is ranked in the top 25 of all four events. The Huskies are seventh (49.355) on vault, 10th on bars (49.295), 19th on beam (49.065) and 21st on floor exercise (49.260). LSU is ranked in three categories. The Tigers are 13th on floor (49.340) and beam (49.180) and 14th (49.250) on uneven bars.

Highlighting the list of individual competitors in the national rankings is Nebraska's Richelle Simpson. She enters the NCAA Regional as the top-ranked all-around performer in the nation with an RQS of 39.725. Teammate A.J. Lamb is ranked 11th (39.535) in the all-around and LSU's April Burkholder is 23rd (39.400). Simpson is ranked third in floor (9.970), second on beam (9.965), 20th on bars (9.910) and fifth on vault (9.950). She has recorded a perfect 10 in every event this year except for bars. Lamb is ranked 12th on floor (9.940), 23rd on beam (9.905) and 13th on vault (9.915). Nebraska's Tami Harris is fourth on beam (9.950) while teammate Julie Houk is tied for eighth (9.930) on bars along with Washington's Carly Dockendorf. Dockendorf is ranked ninth in the nation on floor (9.945). Husky teammate Stacy Wong is tied for fifth on beam (9.945) while UW freshman Kelly McDonald is 11th on vault (9.925). LSU's Burkholder is 19th on floor (9.925) and San Jose State's Shirla Choy is 16th on bars (9.915).

     Team                 RQS 1.  UCLA                 197.980 2.  Nebraska             197.585 3.  Arizona State        197.490 4.  Georgia              197.485 5.  Alabama              197.345 6.  Stanford             197.300 7.  Oklahoma             197.250 8.  Utah                 197.180 9.  Florida              197.01010.  Michigan             196.89511.  Washington           196.71512.  Oregon State         196.66513.  Iowa                 196.51514.  L.S.U.               196.48515.  Iowa State           196.46016.  Ohio State           196.35517.  Auburn               196.35018.  California           196.16019.  Arizona              196.10020.  Brigham Young        196.07521.  Denver               196.03521.  Kent State           196.03523.  Minnesota            195.96024.  North Carolina State 195.93025.  Central Michigan     195.780

Live ScoringLive scoring for the 2003 NCAA West Regional Championships will be available at www.gohuskies.com, Washington's official athletic website.

Last Time Out: Washington finished fourth at the Pac-10 Championships held at UCLA's Pauley Pavilion. The host Bruins won the team title for the fourth time in five years with a score of 198.175. Stanford was second at 197.700, Arizona State was third at 197.075 and the Huskies scored 196.750, its fifth best overall mark of the season. Oregon State was fifth at 196.650. Arizona was sixth at 195.950 and California was seventh at 195.925. The Huskies score was good enough to improve UW's RQS score and jump from 15th to 11th in the national rankings. The highlight of the meet for Washington was sophomore Carly Dockendorf's perfect 10 on bars to share that event title with Oregon State's Elizabeth Jillson. The duo's perfect scores were among five set during the meet. It marked the third time this year Dockendorf has recorded a perfect score. The previous two times happened on floor exercise. It was the second time a Husky scored a 10 at the Pac-10 meet. Lanna Apisukh did it on vault at the 2001 Pac-10s in Corvallis. UCLA's Kate Richardson won the all-around with a score of 39.825. She also shared the floor exercise championship with Oregon State's Chrissy Lamun. Both scored 10.000 on the event. UCLA's Jeanette Antolin took first on vault with a 10.000 while Stanford's Lindsay Wing took top honors on beam with a 9.975. Husky freshman Kelly McDonald tied her career high on beam with a 9.900 while junior Tanya Powers tied career highs on vault and beam with 9.900 scores. UW sophomore Kim Lewis tied her career high on floor with 9.875

Record Setting Score: Washington set a record for total score in the Huskies final regular-season meet of the season. Washington scored 196.700 to defeat Cal State Fullerton (193.650) and Seattle Pacific (191.825) in a three-way meet at Bank of America Arena. Washington's previous best team score was 197.425 the Huskies recorded at the 2001 Pac-10 Championships. Freshman Kelly McDonald led the Huskies by winning the all-around with a score of 39.675. That was the best mark of the year by a UW gymnast and tied for the third best mark in the program's history. McDonald posted career best scores on vault (9.900) and floor (9.950), but did not win any of the event titles that the Huskies swept. Husky junior Emily Pritchard (Buckley) returned after a two-week absence due to kidney stones to take first place on vault (9.950) and set a career high on bars with a 9.975 to win that event. Senior Stacy Wong tied the UW all-time mark on beam with a 9.975 to win that competition. Sophomore Carly Dockendorf posted her second perfect 10.000 score of the year to take top honors on floor. She joins Tiffany Simpson as the only Husky to post more than one perfect score during a career. Simpson had three 10s on floor exercise. Washington had a season-best score of 49.425 on vault.

Husky Lineup: Washington is relatively healthy heading into the NCAA West Regional Championship. Husky freshman Christina Pelaez is questionable after straining her neck during her beam dismount during UW's last home meet. Junior Emily Pritchard's health continues to improve after she missed a pair of meets due to kidney stones. Kelly McDonald's status as an all-arounder is uncertain after a foot injury kept her off floor exercise at the Pac-10 Championships. Tanya Powers will compete in all four events. Senior Stacy Wong will compete on vault and beam while sophomore Tacia LaBatte is expected to go on vault, bars and floor. Carly Dockendorf, who has produced a pair of 10s on floor this year, will also compete on bars and beam and may go as an all-arounder. Pelaez (vault), Kim Lewis (bars and floor), Courtney Canavan (beam) and Amy Metcalf (beam and floor) have also been key contributors to the Husky lineup this season.

Hitting the Mark: Washington has scored at least 194.000 in all 13 of its meets this year. That marks the first time a Husky team has posted that high of a score in every meet during the season. 'At home, we've done great, but we have struggled a bit at times on the road,' says Levesque, whose team averaged 196.600 during home competitions in 2003. 'Overall, the season has been great.'

Regional History: The last time Washington hosted the NCAA West Regional Championship the Huskies came away as the team champions. Lauren Riesenman won the beam (9.925), Tiffany Simpson took top honors on floor (9.950) and tied teammate Klara Kudilkova for first place in the all-around (39.425). Last year the Huskies were fourth at the West Regional held at Oregon State. Emily Pritchard's second-place showing on bars was Washington's top performance. Pritchard and UW senior Stacy Wong both won regional titles in 2001. Pritchard finished first on bars (9.900) while Wong was the top finisher on beam (9.900). This season marks the UW's 22nd consecutive year it has appeared in an NCAA Regional.

Pritchard's Remarkable Return: After missing two weeks due to kidney stones, including several days in the hospital, Husky junior Emily Pritchard made a remarkable return during Washington's final home meet of the season. Pritchard won the vault (9.950) and bars (9.975) and placed fifth on floor (9.825). 'That's the way Emily is,' Levesque says. 'She bounces back really quickly. It probably helped her to get that much rest at the end of the year. The last two years she's struggled at end of the season. I think the time off has infused her with more energy.' Pritchard's two event victories raised her season total to six. Her bars score (9.975) in the home finale was a career-best effort. Pritchard actually competed in UW's Feb. 28 home meet as an all-arounder with the painful kidney stones.

Pac-ing It In: All seven Pac-10 schools qualified for this year's regional championships. UCLA, the Pac-10 champion, will be the top seed in the South Central Regional. Stanford drew the number-one seed in the North Central Regional and Arizona State is the top team in the Northeast Region. California joins the Cardinal in the North Central and Oregon State and Arizona will compete with the Bruins at Missouri. All of the Pac-10's seven gymnastics team are ranked in the top 20 this week. UCLA heads up the poll followed by Arizona State (3), Stanford (6), Washington (11), Oregon State (12), California (18) and Arizona (19). During the regular season, UW faced seven opponents that are currently ranked among the top 10 in the nation. That list includes UCLA (1), Nebraska (2), Arizona State (3), Florida (9), Stanford (6), Oregon State (12) and Utah (8). Washington posted a pair of wins against top-10 opponents this year with victories against sixth-ranked Stanford and 12th-rankedOregon State.

The Double Vault Threat: Sophomore Carly Dockendorf is not only competing for the Husky gymnastics team, she is also a pole vaulter for Washington's track program. While she will not return to track competition until the conclusion of the gymnastics season, Dockendorf did turn in a two-sport performance over a 12-hour period following a home gym meet on Feb. 28. Dockendorf scored a 10 during her floor routine in UW's victory against Oregon State, Boise State and Sacramento State. The next morning she competed at the Huskies home indoor track meet, vaulting 12-0. While competing unattached at the time, the mark would register as the fifth best effort by a Husky pole vaulter in UW history. It was only Dockendorf's second track competition in her UW career. She competed once before, unattached, at the Ken Foreman Invitational in 2002. With only two weeks of practice, Dockendorf finished third with a mark of 12-1 1/2 that would have ranked her fourth all-time in UW history. Washington has only been competing in pole vaulting for six years. Dockendorf won the B.C. Provincial Championship in the pole vault as a senior in high school in Port Moody, British Columbia.

Perfect Performances: Husky sophomore Carly Dockendorf recorded her third 10 of the season at the Pac-10 Championships. The Port Moody, British Columbia native tied for first on bars with a score of 10.000. It marked the third time this year she has recorded a perfect score. Dockendorf has recorded a pair of 10s on floor exercise. No other Husky gymnast has done it more than once during a season. Dockendorf became the fourth Husky gymnast to win a Pac-10 event championship. Teammates Emily Pritchard won the vault in 2002 and Stacy Wong finished first on bars in 2001. Klara Kudilkova was the Pac-10 floor exercise champ in 1997. She also won the vault title in 1996. This season Dockendorf has turned in career-best scores on vault (9.850) and bars (9.950). She leads the Huskies this season with 10 event titles, including a 39.525 to win the all-around in a dual competition with Stanford. Dockendorf is currently ranked eighth in the nation on bars (9.930) and is ninth on floor exercise (9.945). Dockendorf was named an All-Pac-10 performer this year on bars.

Wong Finishing Strong: Senior Stacy Wong turned in her best performance of the season in UW's final home meet of the year. She equaled the school record on beam with a near-perfect score of 9.975. It marked the fifth meet this season that Wong has finished first on beam. She is currently ranked fifth in the nation in the event with an RQS of 9.945. Wong's ranking is the highest of any Husky in the national standings. Due to a series of injuries, Wong is limited to competing on vault and beam for the Huskies. She missed the entire 2000 and 2002 season due to knee injuries. She is Washington's school record holder in the all-around, with a 39.725 she scored at the 2001 Pac-10 Championships. She owns three of the best six all-around scores in UW history. 'I wish she could be an all-arounder, not just for us, but for herself,' Levesque says. 'She has put in her dues and battled back. She will be an awesome person in life. She is lucky to still be able to do compete in gymnastics. She is the stabilizing influence on this team and a big calming difference.'

Powering Up: Junior Tanya Powers has put together her best season as a Husky. This year Powers has posted career high scores on all four events and the all-around. Her best meet came in UW's dual victory against Stanford when she scored a career-best 39.375 in the all-around. That total included career-best scores of 9.900 on beam and 9.825 on floor. She has been an all-arounder for the Huskies in 11 of 13 meets this year. Powers has competed in the all-around 21 times over the past two seasons, the most of any UW competitor.

LaBatte Makes Impact: Sophomore Tacia LaBatte has had a huge impact on the Husky scoring during the second half of the season. During her last six outings, she has competed in at least three events and racked up a total of seven career-high scores during that span. Her best outing of the season came at Utah, where she began her collegiate career before transferring after her freshman season. She finished third in the all-around against the Utes with a score of 39.350. LaBatte missed most of the 2002 season due to a broken foot. She did not compete for the Huskies in UW's road win at Boise State due to leg soreness. She rebounded last week to equal her career high on floor with a 9.950.

McDonald Having Brilliant Frosh Campaign: Prior to the start of the season Husky coach Bob Levesque predicted that freshman Kelly McDonald would be a significant scorer for the Huskies. He nailed that prediction. In her last five meets as an all-arounder, McDonald has scored at least 39.200. In UW's home finale she won the all-around with a career-best 39.675, tying as the third best mark in Husky history. She had career-best scores of 9.900 on beam in her final two meets. Interesting, McDonald, who had career bests on beam (9.900) and floor (9.950) did not win any event titles during the meet. The all-around championship marked the second time this season McDonald has finished first in the all-around. She has won the vault four times and owns one bars title.

Head Coach Bob Levesque: Washington head coach Bob Levesque is in his 13th season coaching the Huskies in 2003. Levesque owns a career record of 152-122-1. He came to Washington in 1991 after a career as a highly successful club coach. He has taken the Huskies to the NCAA Championships three times (1994, 1997, 1998) and guided the team to one NCAA Regional championship (1998). Levesque was honored as the Pac-10 coach of the year in both 1997 and 1998. As a club-level coach, he tutored six future Olympians. He also coached Tanya Chaplin, the current head coach at Oregon State. Levesque is a 1972 graduate of Fresno State.

A New Husky: Assistant coach Frank Lee did not travel to Utah on Mar. 7. Lee's wife, Uyen, gave birth the day of the competition to Landon Lee. He was born at 8:25 a.m. and weighed seven pounds, three ounces. The Lee's have an older daughter, Jasmine.

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