Women's Gymnastics Host No. 13 Stanford in the Big Meet

Jan. 31, 2006

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THIS WEEK:
The California women's gymnastics team (2-6, 0-2) will host No. 13 Stanford in the Big Meet on Friday, Feb. 3 in Haas Pavilion. Last week the Golden Bears traveled to No. 10 Arizona. Cal fell to the Wildcats (195.875-191.325) on Friday night. Freshman Jessica Kelley recorded a career-high 38.600 in the all-around competition.

ALUMNI NIGHT:
Head coach Cari DuBois and the California women's gymnastics program will welcome back past Golden Bear competitors during Cal's Feb. 3 Alumni Night meet against No. 13 Stanford. This event is to help strengthen the alumni information database and acknowledge those who have made contributions to the success of Golden Bear gymnastics. If you are an alumni and plan to attend, please sign in at the scores table prior to the meet.

COMING TO YOU LIVE:
California's home matches will be available live with video and audio coverage on the California Golden Bears Sports Network. Subscription to California Golden Bears Sports Network are $9.95 a month or $79.95 annual. For more information visit: http://cal.newtier.com. Make sure you don't miss a meet!

SCOUTING THE OPPOSITION:

No. 13 Stanford: No. 13 Stanford enters Haas Pavilion after falling to Oregon State (195.15-194.125). The Cardinal is led by Tabitha Yim who is No. 1 nationally in the all-around competition. Yim did not compete in the all-around competition against the Beavers, but did compete in three events, vault (9.900), floor (9.850) and beam (9.775). Stanford currently leads the Pac-10 on the vault (49.008 avg.) and is also No. six nationally in the event. Yim and sophomore Liz Tricase led Stanford in the event.

LAST YEAR AGAINST STANFORD:Injuries, which have hampered the California women's gymnastics team in 2005, plagued the Bears (176.450) yet again in their regular season-ending loss to host San Jose State (194.325) and Stanford (192.750) at Spartan Gym. The Bears finished the meet with just four competitors on the final rotation after senior My-Lan Dodd suffered an undisclosed season-ending injury during her floor exercise routine. The full extent of Dodd's injury will be determined upon a further examination in Berkeley. Cal began the night in third place after posting a 47.100 on bars, highlighted by freshman Siobhan Luce's new career-high score of 9.650. Led by Dodd's 9.800 and senior Lauren Shipp's 9.775, the Bears rallied with a 48.425 on beam to move into second after two rotations. Dodd, who owns four of the top five all-around marks in Cal program history, was the fifth and final competitor for the Bears on floor, but was unable to finish her routine. Cal finished the event with a 42.575. Cal was led on the evening by Luce, whose 38.425 all-around score was a tenth of a point off of her career high and fifth in the meet. The Bears top individual event finish was by freshman Alli Szutu, who posted a 9.750 and tied for third on bars.

BATTLE OF THE BAY:The California women's gymnastics team hopes to break a streak set by Stanford. Stanford holds a 26-15 lead over the Golden Bears in the Big Meet, including Stanford's 10 recent consecutive victories over Cal. The last win for the Bears over Stanford was in 1996, when No. 16 Cal beat (194.100-193.050) the 18th-ranked Cardinal.

BEAMERS:California ranks No. 25 nationally on the beam. The Bears posted a season-best 48.075 against Oregon State (1/20). A host of Cal gymnasts have posted a season-best in the event. A few include, senior Britani Pittullo posted her season-best at Arizona on the beam (9.750). Junior Justine Cephus recorded a 9.750 against Oregon State and freshman Lydia Williams recorded her career-high (9.775) also against the Beavers.

VALIANT VAULTS:The meet against Arizona marked the first time since last year's meet against North Carolina State the Bears scored a 48.000 or higher. Cal posted a 48.000 in the event. Cal was led by senior Britani Pittullo who recorded a season-best 9.750 and junior Isabel Garcia (9.625, season-best). Also in the event, freshmen Joanna Bennett (9.400) and Jessica Kelley (9.675) recorded their career-highs.

THE MORE THE MERRIER:
California introduced two new individuals into events at Arizona, partly because the absence of freshman Lydia Williams due to illness. Junior Justine Cephus competed in the vault (9.450) and bars (7.800) for the first time this season. Freshman Tiffany Tam competed on the beam, also for the first time posting a 9.675.

GRACIOUS GARCIA:
Junior Isabel Garcia set new season-highs on the vault (9.625), beam (9.500) and tied floor (9.650) score at Arizona. Garcia previously honed a season-high 9.450 on the vault and a 9.475 on the beam.

JUSTICE FOR JESS:
Already in three all-around competitions, freshman Jessica Kelley is competing like a veteran. Kelley posted career-high at Arizona on the vault (9.675) and bars (9.700), along with matching her career-high 38.600 in the all-around. Kelley ranks No. 11 (west region) and No. 15 (Pac-10) in the All-Around. Kelley also ranks No. 15 in the west region on the floor.

BEND IT LIKE BENNETT:
Freshman Joanna Bennett set new career-highs at Arizona. She finally broke out from a 9.300 on the vault to record a 9.400 in the event on Friday. Bennett, usually flawless on the bars posted a 9.725 at Arizona. Previously, she had recorded a 9.675 three times this season. Bennett ranks No. 18 in the west region and Pac-10.

9.750:
Senior Britani Pittullo recorded season-highs on the vault (9.750) and beam (9.750). The Rancho Cucamonga, Calif., native was one point off from matching her career-high on the vault. This was Pittullo's highest marks since the 2004 season when she vaulted a 9.850 three times that season.

INKING THE BEST:
Head Coach Cari DuBois announced in November the signing of Sophia Hocini (Murrieta, Calif./Murrieta Valley High School) and Nicole Day (Artesia, Calif./Richard Gahr High School). Both will attend the University of California in the fall of 2006.

COACHES:
In her fourth year at California, head Coach Cari DuBois has already reshaped the women's gymnastics program from the day she arrived on campus. DuBois has posted a 27-23 record at Cal; she was named the 2003 Pac-10 co-Coach of the year and the 2003 West Regional Coach of the Year. In her short tenure, DuBois has guided the Bears to their first back-to-back dual-meet winning seasons since 1991-92 and led the 2003 Cal team to its highest NCAA Regional finish (fourth) since 1992. A year later, Cal finished fifth at the NCAA Regionals, the program's best back-to-back postseason showings since 1991-92. Prior to coming to Berkeley, DuBois worked as an assistant for nine years (six at West Virginia and three at Cal under Alfie Mitchell). DuBois also has spent time instructing and choreographing routines at several gymnastics camps and clubs nationwide. DuBois graduated from Ball State in 1992 with a degree in exercise science and wellness and holds a mater's degrees in athletic coaching from West Virginia. Scott Ryan, hired in August 2005, assists DuBois. Ryan served as the director and head coach at Aztec Gymnastics in San Diego, Calif., prior to his hiring at Cal. While at Aztec Gymnastics, Ryan led his teams to 33 state and regional championships in the state of California and national championships in both the United State and Mexico. Also, 18 of his gymnasts earned college gymnastics scholarships.

UP NEXT:
California will host No. 11 UCLA, Sacramento State and UC Davis on Friday, Feb. 10 in Haas Pavilion. The meet is slated for a 7:30 p.m. (PST) start.

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