Cal Squares off Against No. 20 Oregon State
Jan. 27, 2004
Berkeley, Calif. -
THIS WEEK:Friday, Jan. 30 Oregon State
Haas Pavilion, Berkeley, Calif. 7:30 p.m.
WHAT'S ON TAP: The Golden Bears (5-1, 1-1 Pac-10) this week will entertain Pac-10 foe and 20th-ranked Oregon State at Haas Pavilion Friday, Jan. 30 at 7:30 p.m. Cal looks to be peaking at just the right time, with their schedule getting tougher. The meet will also include the Cal men's gymnastics team taking on Air Force and Stanford. Friday's meet is the second of four home meets this season. Cal welcomes UCLA and Seattle Pacific on Feb. 13 and Ball State on March 12.
LAST FRIDAY AT HAAS PAVILION: Cal was impressive in its 2004 home debut, showing the form that broke numerous records last season. The Golden Bears (195.95) won the meet, running away from second place Arizona State (194.25), third place Utah State (194.15) and fourth place San Jose State (193.875). The victory over Arizona State was only the third victory over the Sun Devils in 22 match-ups. Cal won every event outright, except for bars, which they tied for first with Utah State. The team victory signified individual accomplishments as well. My Lan-Dodd won the all-around, scoring 39.425. Cal's other two all-arounders, Stephanie Kim and Karissa Chock, finished second and third, respectively, with scores of 39.225 and 39.175.
IN THE RECORD BOOKS: Dodd's masterful floor exercise on Jan. 23, placed her deeper into the Cal annals. With her 9.95, she is now tied for or individually holds the best score for every discipline except bars. To be first in every event would be no small task. Dodd would need a perfect 10.0 to tie 1992 All-American Cindy Tom on the bars. As it stands, Dodd's best bars score ever was a 9.925 set Feb 9, 2003. Her 39.425 all-around score ties her own mark for fifth best score in school history (she holds all of the top five). Dodd wasn't alone though in setting new personal standards. Kim's 39.225 all-around is a personal best, along with her 9.8 on vault and 9.85 on bars. Chock's 39.175 was her best all-around score ever. She also tied a personal best on the vault with a 9.9, the third best score ever at Cal. Lauren Shipp chipped in as well, setting a new personal best on vault with a 9.875, the fourth best vault score in Cal history.
SCOUTING THE BEAVERS: Oregon State is coming off a dramatic upset win over Washington in Corvallis, Ore. The Beavers literally edged the Huskies by a 196.05-196.025. Coach Tanya Chaplin got her 100th career win and Chelsea Plourde showed she is a force to be reckoned with. The freshman sensation has now won two consecutive all-arounds, this time posting a career-best 39.475. After a disappointing vault rotation, the Beavers climbed back into the meet with near flawless execution on beam, bars and floor.
A LOOK AT THE GOLDEN BEARS: Coming off a bounce-back 2003 campaign, which saw the Bears finish at 12-5 (their first above .500 record since 1996) and 2-4 in the Pac-10, Cal is primed to build on Co-Pac-10 Coach of the Year Cari DuBois' first season at the helm. In her second year, DuBois returns nine gymnasts and three freshmen to take on the loaded Pac-10 conference. The expectation level of this team has risen, as they eye an NCAA Championship berth for the first time since 1992 and second time ever. Last season, the 2003 Bears smashed several Cal records and now hold the top three all-around scores of all time. DuBois will look to Cal record-holder My-Lan Dodd to continue what is becoming one of the best gymnastics careers in Cal history. Dodd is the only current Bears gymnast to qualify for Nationals (2003) and, unbelievably, holds the top five all-around scores ever posted, ranging from 39.675-39.425 (all in 2003). Last season, she also recorded the best vault (9.950) and beam (9.950) scores ever by a female gymnast from Berkeley.
IN THE POLLS: After checking in at No. 21 in the first preseason poll, the Bears find themselves at No. 30 after three weeks of competition. They climbed 13 spots after a stellar home performance last weekend. Cal is the seventh highest rated Pac-10 team. Ranked above the Bears are No. 6 UCLA, No. 7 Stanford, No. 10 Washington, No. 19 Arizona State and No. 20 Oregon State.
YOUNG CUBS: The Bears welcome three freshmen to this year's squad. Justine Cephus hails from Beverly Hills, Calif. and trained at All Olympians Gymnastics. From Sacramento, Calif., Isabel Garcia trained at Technique Gymnastics. Lastly, Elyse Wong comes from Honolulu, Hawaii and did her training at Kokokahi Gymnastics. The triumvirate has the potential to make an impact in the all-around as early as this season.