GymDawgs Host Stanford, Sacramento State and SPU Friday
Jan. 15, 2009
Setting the Scene
The Washington gymnastics team hosts cross-town rival SPU, Sacramento State and Pac-10 rival Stanford this Friday, Jan. 16 at 7pm in Bank of America Arena. The Huskies picked up a win to start the season last Friday, posting a 192.550-184.650 victory over Alaska Anchorage.
A free live video feed will be available on GoHuskies.com at http://all-access.cbssports.com/player.html?code=wash&media=98456. In addition, all 2009 home meets will be available for viewing On-Demand to all regional Comcast subscribers.
Last Time Out
The Huskies started their season with a solid win over the University of Alaska Anchorage, defeating the Seawolves 192.550-184.650. Senior Ashley Houghting picked up two event titles (vault and floor), while sophomore Kristen Linton won two more (bars and beam). Sophomore Karen Cain earned the all-around title after consistent performances on four events. Washington's freshmen debuted well, with Hatsune Akaogi taking third on the beam and on the floor and Amanda Cline earning a fourth-place finish on vault.
Huskies in the Rankings
After the first weekend of competition, two Huskies find themselves among the top-20 in the nation. Houghting is in a five-way tie for second in the country on floor after posting a near-perfect 9.900 last Friday. Linton is tied for 21st on bars, after scoring a 9.825 on the uneven parallel bars to win the event. As a team, Washington received votes in the preseason poll, ranking them 27th in the nation.
Scouting the Cardinal
Seventh-ranked Stanford comes to Seattle on the heels of defeating No. 9 Oregon State, No. 15 Denver and BYU on Jan. 2 in the Cancun Classic. Carly Janiga was named the Pac-10 Gymnast of the Week following the win. The 2007 all-around All-American won two event titles in the quad-meet and finished second in a third event. Stanford is the defending Pac-10 Champion and will look for its fourth conference crown in six years this March, when it hosts the Pac-10 Championships on March 21.
About the Series
Washington and Stanford have met 68 times, with Washington holding a slim series edge, 36-32. The Huskies have lost the last three straight meetings, however, including both meetings last season (Chicago Style Meet - Stanford finished second, Washington finished fourth, and the Pac-10 Championships - Stanford finished first, Washington finished sixth).
Scouting the Falcons
Seattle Pacific heads across town to Bank of America Arena sporting a 1-0 record, having defeated Anchorage Alaska last Saturday, 188.075-185.550. The Falcons are a NCAA Division II team and have competed in the national championships 27 consecutive seasons, with the streak beginning in 1982. Last week, the Falcons won the floor, the bars and the all-around, tied with UAA on the vault and lost the beam. SPU is coached by 33rd-year head coach Laurell Tindell and assisted by former Washington gymnast Carly Dockendorf.
About the Series
Washington and SPU have met 69 times, with the Huskies on the winning side of a lop-sided 66-3 series record. The Huskies have won the last 10 meetings.
Scouting the Hornets
Sacramento State opened its season last weekend with wins over California and UC Davis in a tri-meet at Cal. The Hornets out-paced UC Davis, 191.975-190.250 and Cal 191.975-186.650. The score was the Hornets' highest season-opening score since 2005. Sac State was led by Marina Borisova, who took the all-around title and won the bars, beam and floor. Sac State has competed at the NCAA Championships the last three seasons, one of only 29 schools to qualify for three straight meets.
About the Series
Washington and Sacramento State have met 15 times in history. The Hornets have never defeated the Huskies. Washington last beat Sac State in last year's West Regional.
The Huskies boast three seniors on the 2009 squad, but have no juniors. Washington's 12-member squad is primarily comprised of four sophomores and five freshmen, giving the Huskies a youthful appearance. Among the Dawgs' seven returnees are 2008 NCAA all-around qualifier Haley Bogart (So.) and 2008 first-team All-Pac-10 (floor) selection Ashley Houghting (Sr.). Between them, Bogart and Houghting have racked up 41 individual event titles.
Henderson Added as Student Coach
Sophomore Danielle Henderson suffered a shoulder injury in the fall of 2007, sidelining her until mid-season 2008. Henderson then sustained a season-ending injury during a practice in February of 2008. While she continues to rehab, she has been medically disqualified from competing during the 2009 season.
Huskies in the Classroom
The Washington gymnastics team posted the highest team GPA in the department in the fall quarter, averaging a team GPA of 3.48. Cumulatively, the Huskies boast a 3.39 grade point average. Last season, five members of the Husky team were honored as Pac-10 All-Academic selections. Since Bowers took over as coach in 2007, 11 Huskies have been named to the Pac-10 All-Academic team. This is the second straight season the gymnastics team has posted the highest fall GPA in the Washington athletics department.
Inside the Roster
The Huskies hail from six states and two countries, with four gymnasts coming from the state of Washington. Of the four native Washingtonians, two are from Kirkland (Engreitz and Omori), one is from Edmonds (Linton) and one is from Lynnwood (Epps). Three Huskies came north from California, with Akaogi (Cupertino), Eller (Newcastle) and Bogart (Woodside) each heading for the great Pacific Northwest. Gilbert (Phoenix, Arizona) and Cain (Hays, Texas) represent the southwest in Seattle, while Walior (Prior Lake, Minnesota) adds some Great Lakes flair. Cline hails from the Centennial State (Aurora, Colorado). Houghting (Welland, Ont.) is the only Husky from outside the U.S., coming south from Canada.
The Huskies' average height is 5'-2', with Cline (5'-6') coming in as the tallest. Bogart and Gilbert tie for shortest on the team, standing at an even five-feet.
Washington again has one of the toughest schedules in the country, with seven 2009 opponents earning places on the preseason coaches poll and an eighth team receiving votes. In just their second meet of the season, the Huskies will face fifth-ranked Stanford on Jan 16. The road gets no easier, with Washington traveling to No. 2 Utah on Jan. 23 and votes-getter California on Feb. 1. February and March will see the Huskies take on seven ranked opponents, since the Huskies will face Oregon State twice.
Washington will serve as the host site of the 2009 NCAA West Regional on Saturday, April 4.