GymDawgs Headed South To Face California And Illinois State
Jan. 27, 2009
Setting the Scene
The No. 29 Huskies (3-2) head south to the Bay Area to face off against Pac-10 rival Cal (0-5) and Illinois State (1-2) on Super Sunday at 12pm. Live meet statistics will be available on GoHuskies.com.
Last Time Out
Washington fell from the top-25 after a tough meet against then-No. 3 Utah last Friday. The 29th-ranked Huskies notched a season-high score of 49.000 on the vault, led by senior Ashley Houghting's 9.900 performance, good for second place in the event. Freshman Hatsune Akaogi was another bright spot for the Dawgs as the rookie took fourth on beam and in the all-around and fifth on the bars with a career-high 9.800.
Huskies in the Rankings
Houghting moved up to tie for No. 12 in the country on the vault (9.875) after her outstanding performance last weekend. Sophomore Samantha Walior is just outside the top-50 at No. 52 in the nation on the beam, averaging a score of 9.792. As a team, Washington currently sits at No. 29 with a team average of 194.250.
Scouting the Golden Bears
California is the only other Pac-10 school currently not in the top-25. The Bears have struggled this season, going winless so far with losses to UC Davis, Sacramento State, Oregon State, Arkansas and UCLA. Last week's meet at UCLA saw the Bears record new season-high scores in every event and was the highest team total of the season with a team score of 190.575. The Bears are led by Sophia Hocini and Avery Gee with Hocini coming in as the top all-arounder.
About the Series
Washington and Cal have met 76 times in history, with the Huskies holding the all-time series edge, 64-12. Washington has won the last nine straight meetings, including a victory at the Pac-10 Championship last spring.
Scouting the Redbirds
The Illinois State Redbirds (1-2) stop in to Haas Pavilion after meeting Sac State on Jan. 30 and will have only one day's rest between the two meets. The Redbirds dropped their first two meets against Southeast Missouri State and Central Michigan before picking up a come-from-behind win over Bowling Green last weekend. Sophomore Hannah Deutsch was named the Midwest Independent Conference Gymnast of the Week on Jan. 14 following her performance against Central Michigan. Against CMU, Deutsch recorded two second-place performances and one fourth-place showing.
About the Series
Washington and Illinois State have met only once before, with Washington defeating the Redbirds back in 2001.
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, setting a new team GPA record. 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 faced fifth-ranked Stanford on Jan 16. The road got no easier, with Washington traveling to No. 2 Utah on Jan. 23. February and March will see the Huskies take on seven ranked opponents, since the Huskies will face Oregon State twice. In addition to seeing the Beavers twice, Washington also takes on UCLA, Arizona State and Denver.
Washington will serve as the host site of the 2009 NCAA West Regional on Saturday, April 4.
Last weekend's meet at Utah marked the second straight Power of Pink weekend for the Dawgs. Washington hosted its Power of Pink meet on Jan. 16, warming up in t-shirts emblazoned with the phrase,'Real Dawgs Wear Purple And Pink.'