Gymnastics Squad Ends Regular Season At Arkansas

March 15, 2005

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UCLA Travels To Arkansas For Quad Meet - The fifth-ranked UCLA Bruins (11-3) will travel to Arkansas for a Saturday, March 19 quad meet against second-ranked Nebraska, 12th-ranked Oregon State and 14th-ranked Arkansas. The meet will take place at 7 pm CT at Barnhill Arena.

Follow The Action Live - Live streaming video and live scoring will be available on the Arkansas webpage, www.ladybacks.com. The pay-per-view event is $4.95 for the entire meet. The meet features a video feed from Barnhill Arena, with audio provided by the house announcer. Live stats (free) will also be available.

Bruins Rematch With Nebraska, Oregon State - UCLA will be facing familiar foes in Nebraska and Oregon State. The Bruins competed against both teams in one weekend in January, defeating Oregon State 194.5-192.875 in Corvallis on Jan. 14 and beating Nebraska 197.05-192.65 in Pauley Pavilion on Jan. 17. UCLA has not faced Arkansas since the Ladybacks' inaugural season in 2003. The Bruins won that meet, 198.175-193.475.

Bruins vs. Bruins For Second-Straight Meet - For the second consecutive meet, former Bruins will be coaching the opposing team. Oregon State head coach Tanya (Service) Chaplin was a five-time Pac-10 champion and a six-time first-team All-American, and associate head coach Michael Chaplin was a two-time All-American and 1989 Pac-10 rings champion on the UCLA men's team. Michael Chaplin was a teammate of Bruin assistant coach Chris Waller on UCLA's 1987 NCAA Championship team. Arkansas co-head coach Mark Cook was an assistant coach on UCLA's first NCAA Championship team in 1997. The Bruins visited with former Bruin All-American Rhonda Faehn and former assistant coach Randy Lane when the Florida Gators were in town March 6.

UCLA In The Rankings: Maloney, Schwikert 1-2 In All-Around - The Bruins are ranked No. 5 in the national rankings, which are based on regional qualifying score (RQS). UCLA currently holds an RQS of 196.610. RQS is totaled by taking the team's top six scores, three of which must be away, throwing out the high score and averaging the remaining five.UCLA is ranked in the Top 7 on all events - No. 1 on vault (49.335 RQS) and bars (49.255), No. 4 on floor (49.305) and No. 6 on beam (49.075).

Senior Kristen Maloney and freshman Tasha Schwikert are 1-2 in the all-around. Maloney leads the nation for the eighth-straight week, holding an RQS of 39.6, with a national season-best 39.825 earned earlier this month. Schwikert, who also scored a 39.825 this month, is right behind with a 39.555. Junior Kate Richardson ranks 25th (39.215). Maloney is ranked in the Top 6 on all four events - No. 5 on vault (9.915), No. 4 on bars (9.905), No. 3 on beam (9.925) and No. 6 on floor (9.905). Schwikert is Top 9 on all four events - No. 6 on vault (9.910), No. 2 on bars (9.920) and floor (9.925), and No. 9 (9.885). Richardson ranks No. 10 on vault (9.9), No. 4 on beam (9.915) and No. 6 on floor (9.905).

Bruins Score National Season-Best 197.85 - UCLA scored a national season-high 197.85 in its final home meet of the season on Mar. 6 to defeat Florida, which recorded a season-high away score of 196.65. The Bruins led by just two-tenths at the halfway mark but pulled away with huge scores on balance beam and floor exercise (49.575 on each event). Senior Kristen Maloney and freshman Tasha Schwikert tied for first in the all-around with career-highs of 39.825. Each gymnast scored a perfect 10 - Maloney with her first ever on bars and Schwikert with her second on floor.

Maloney Makes UCLA History - Senior Kristen Maloney made history last week when she became the first Bruin gymnast ever to score a perfect 10 on every event in her career. Her 10.0 on uneven bars completed her set of 10.0s. She had previously scored perfect marks on vault in 2004 and balance beam and floor exercise in 2001. Only three other gymnasts in NCAA history have ever scored 10s on all four events - Georgia's Karin Lichey and Heather Stepp and Utah's Missy Marlowe.

Maloney has been the standout performer in the nation so far in the 2005 season. The former U.S. Olympian has been ranked No. 1 in the all-around for eight-straight weeks, averaging 39.547 in nine all-around appearances. She (and teammate Tasha Schwikert) posted a national-high and career-best 39.825 on Mar. 6. Maloney has scored 9.9 or higher on 25 of 38 routines competed and 9.8 or higher on 36 of 38 routines. She has even upgraded her already difficult floor exercise routine, throwing a triple twist as her last tumbling pass in UCLA's last meet. Maloney now tumbles a double layout, whip to immediate double pike and triple-twist. The first and last passes are E elements, and the middle pass is a B+D, which holds .3 bonus.

Maloney, Schwikert Form Top Duo In Nation - 2000 U.S. Olympic teammates Kristen Maloney and Tasha Schwikert have combined to form the most formidable all-around duo in the nation. The two Bruins are ranked No. 1 and No. 2, respectively, in the national all-around rankings. In addition, junior Kate Richardson ranks No. 22, but she will not be competing in the all-around in future meets this season due to a thumb injury. Maloney and Schwikert proved their status as the Top 2 in the nation when they scored identical all-around totals of 39.825 on Mar. 6, the highest mark in the nation this year and the fifth-highest score in UCLA history. For Schwikert, it was a new UCLA freshman record.

Richardson Back In Limited Capacity - Junior All-American and two-time Olympian Kate Richardson has return to competition after sitting out the Feb. 27 meet against Georgia and Arizona. Richardson suffered a functional rupture of the ulnar collateral ligament of the thumb during warmups at Stanford on Feb. 18. Despite the injury, she competed in that meet and won all three events on which she performed - vault, beam and floor. After resting for one week, she returned on Mar. 6 against Florida and tied for first on balance beam with a season-best 9.975 and was third on floor with a season-high tying 9.925. Richardson may compete on vault in future meets but will not see any action the rest of the year on uneven bars.

Perfect Bruins - Despite the stricter scoring system this year, UCLA gymnasts have still seen their share of perfect 10s. Freshman Tasha Schwikert is tied with LSU's April Burkholder for most perfect 10s this year with three - two on floor exercise and one on uneven bars. Senior Kristen Maloney also received a 10 this year on the uneven bars, giving her perfect 10s on all four events in her storied UCLA career. Junior Kate Richardson has come close twice this year, scoring a 9.975 on bars on Jan. 17 and on beam on Mar. 6. Maloney has also had a few near-misses, scoring 9.975 on beam Mar. 6 and Jan. 17. She also had a 9.95 on floor Mar. 6 with one judge giving her a perfect 10. Schwikert has three 9.975s in addition to her three 10s.

Gymnastics Featured On UCLA Sports Magazine Show - This week's UCLA Sports Magazine Show will feature an interview with UCLA head coach Valorie Kondos Field. The show airs on Fox Sports West 2 on Wednesday, Mar. 16 at 11 pm PT, on Friday, Mar. 18 at 9:30 pm and 11:30 pm, and on Saturday, Mar. 19 at 11:00 am.

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