UCLA Wins NCAA West Regional, Advances To NCAA Gymnastics Championships
April 9, 2005
Seattle, WA - UCLA won its 16th NCAA Regional title, claiming victory at the NCAA West Regional Championships at the Bank of America Arena at the University of Washington. The Bruins scored a 197.025, and Penn State also advanced with a second-place mark of 195.375. Bruin freshman Tasha Schwikert won the all-around with a score of 39.725 and tied for first on vault, bars and floor. UCLA senior Kristen Maloney was second in the all-around, first on beam and tied for first on vault and floor. Freshman Jordan Schwikert completed the UCLA all-around sweep with a 39.4 for third place.
The Bruins began the meet on the uneven bars. Sophomore Ashley Peckett led off with a solid 9.775 after sticking her double layout dismount. Classmate Courtney Walker followed with a very clean routine that merited a 9.775. Maloney made an uncharacteristic miscue on her overshoot to handstand but saved a fall and ended up with a 9.6. Jordan Schwikert kept the rotation going strong with a 9.75, and Lindsey Vanden Eykel followed up with a 9.7. T. Schwikert ended with a bang, sticking her full-twisting double back dismount and scoring a 9.9 for a team total of 48.9, good for first place after one event.
UCLA had no trouble on the balance beam in rotation two, scoring a 49.475 to take a 0.85 lead after two events with a two-event score of 98.375. Christie Tedmon's 9.8 leadoff routine set her teammates up nicely for big scores. Vanden Eykel followed Tedmon with a 9.775, then J. Schwikert scored a 9.875, followed by a 9.925 from T. Schwikert. Kate Richardson kept things going with a 9.9, and Maloney closed with a near-perfect 9.975.
Two out-of-bounds deductions on floor exercise by the Bruins could have allowed Penn State to cut closer into the lead, but a pair of 9.95s from T. Schwikert and Maloney allowed UCLA to actually increase its lead by .025. Peckett had another strong leadoff routine, scoring 9.775, and J. Schwikert continued her great meet, scoring a 9.875. The 9.95s from T. Schwikert and Maloney brought UCLA's floor score to 49.15 and the Bruins team total to 147.525. Penn State (146.65), Stanford (145.975) and Central Michigan (145.375) trailed as the only other teams with three events completed.
Finishing up on vault in their fifth rotation, the Bruins left nothing to chance, scoring a 49.5 to clinch the victory. Peckett drilled her Yurchenko layout half, scoring a season-high 9.875. Kisha Auld also hit her vault, a Tsukahara full, for a 9.7. J. Schwikert got huge distance on her Yurchenko full with just a small step and scored a 9.9 to tie her career-best. Richardson also had great distance on her Yurchenko full, scoring a 9.825. T. Schwikert and Maloney both had back-to-back sticks on their Yurchenko fulls, each scoring a 9.95. When the dust settled, the Bruins had scored a 49.5 and final score of 197.025.
Maloney was named West Region Gymnast of the Year, UCLA head coach Valorie Kondos Field was named the Coach of the Year.
'We did a great job today,' Kondos Field said. 'However, we still haven't reached our potential. We need to realize that we can hit great routines 100% of the time and it should just be amatter of how great we can make them. The thing we coaches are impressed with is how well the team is working together as a team and how much trust they have in us coaches and in each other.'
2005 NCAA West Regional Championships
TEAM: 1. UCLA 197.025; 2. Penn State 195.375; 3. Washington 195.000; 4. Stanford 194.750; 5. Boise State 194.500; 6. Central Michigan 194.125.
BARS: 1T. T. Schwikert (UCLA), Kristal Uzelac (Penn State), 9.9; 3. Tabitha Yim (Stan) 9.875. Also: 6T. Peckett (UCLA), Courtney Walker (UCLA) 9.775; 9T. J. Schwikert (UCLA), 9.75; 15T. Lindsey Vanden Eykel (UCLA), 9.7; 29T. Maloney (UCLA), 9.6
BEAM: 1. Maloney (UCLA), 9.975; 2. T. Schwikert (UCLA), 9.925; 3T. Richardson (UCLA), Kelly McDonald (Wash), Lauren Elmore (Stan), Lindsay Ward (Boise St), 9.9. Also: 7T. J. Schwikert (UCLA), 9.875; 13T. Christie Tedmon (UCLA), 9.8; 19T. Vanden Eykel (UCLA), 9.775
FLOOR: 1T. Maloney (UCLA), T. Schwikert (UCLA), 9.95; 3. Carly Dockendorf (Wash), 9.9. Also: 4. J. Schwikert (UCLA), 9.875; 15T. Peckett (UCLA), 9.775; 35T. Richardson (UCLA), 9.6; 38T. Walker (UCLA), 9.575
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