This Week in Pac-10 Gymnastics
Feb. 18, 2009
THIS WEEK IN THE PAC-10:
As the regular season of the 2009 gymnastics campaign begins to hone in on the championship segment, the rankings have transitioned from season average to regional qualifying score (RQS). Qualification for regional competition is based on a team's and an all-around competitor's six best regular-season-meet scores, of which three must be away. To obtain the RQS, the high score is eliminated and the remaining five scores are averaged. ARIZONA STATE and CALIFORNIA consequently slipped in the rankings this week, since teams without a valid RQS are automatically assigned zeros. The Sun Devils commenced their dual meet season a week late, whereas the Bears had an early-season bye.
Both ARIZONA and Arizona State recorded their first dual meet victories of the season last weekend. The wins required season-high team scores and career performances by their go-to all-arounders. Pac-10 gymnasts have shined on vault this year: UCLA freshman Vanessa Zamarripa landed her second perfect 10 on the apparatus on Sunday and secured the second-best ranking in the country. Rounding out the top five vault RQS are WASHINGTON's Ashley Houghting (No. 4, 9.895) and OREGON STATE's Mandi Rodriguez (No. 5, 9.890). The Bruins were a model of consistency last week when their lineup compiled a nation-leading high of 49.525.
This week, No. 19 Arizona hosts in-state rival Arizona State on Friday, Feb. 20. Wildcat junior Sarah Tomczyk competed in six events over the three-day weekend, tying a career-high 9.925 floor and posting a team-high 9.875 vault. No. 9 Oregon State travels to Washington on Saturday, Feb. 21. Last week marked the third time this season the Beavers have scored 49+ on all four events, and the fourth straight meet with a team score above 196. The 12th-ranked Huskers host No. 3 UCLA at the 18th Masters Classic on Sunday, Feb. 22. UCLA has an all-time record of 20-6 against Nebraska. Rounding out the week's competition, No. 4 STANFORD travels across the bay to California for the Bears' annual Flip for a Cure breast cancer awareness meet.
COMPETITION SCHEDULE, FEB. 17 -FEB. 23:
*All times are Pacific
Friday, February 20
ARIZONA STATE at ARIZONA, 6 p.m.
Saturday, February 21
Eastern Michigan/Illinois/OREGON STATE at WASHINGTON, 7 p.m.
(A free video webcast of the meet will be available on GoHuskies.com)
Sunday, February 22
UCLA at Nebraska, 11 a.m.
STANFORD at CALIFORNIA (Pink Meet), 2 p.m.
ARIZONA - Behind a season-high 195.7, the Wildcats collected their first win of the year, beating Brown and Wisconsin-Stout Friday night. The Gymcats posted season-high scores in three of four events, including vault (49.275), beam (49.075), and floor (49.350). Both Sarah Tomczyk and Rebecca Cardenas recorded career-high 9.925s on floor, the Wildcats' two highest scores in any event this year. Adding to the 9.9+ accolades were Britnie Jones and Briana Bergeson on beam. On Sunday, Arizona collected its second meet win in three days when it bested Texas Women's University. Alexis Greene surpassed the 39-point all-around mark for the first time this season and won the overall title. On bars, the Gymcats accumulated a team score of 48.75, three-quarters of a point higher than the team bar score posted earlier in the weekend. The 49.025 tallied on beam was the third consecutive 49+ team showing on the apparatus.
ARIZONA STATE - The Sun Devils defeated CALIFORNIA 193.725-191.475 in season-high fashion. Beaté Jones and Nicole Harris took first place honors in the all-around with 39.2, a career high for Jones. Francesca Mercurio tied for second (38.25). On bars, the Sun Devils set a season-high 49.0 behind a first-place 9.875 by Kaitlynn Bormann that shattered her career high. Courtesy of a season-high 9.85, Harris claimed event honors on beam. Finishing on floor, Tiana Jean and Jones each performed their way to career bests and ASU's first scores of 9.9.
CALIFORNIA - The Golden Bears posted their highest team score of the year (191.475) in a dual against ARIZONA STATE. The Bears bested the Sun Devils on beam (48.275) and vault (48.500). The latter was the team's top vault score of 2009. Bridgette Glass led the vault team with a 9.875, the highest score by a Bear on the apparatus so far this season. Freshman Alexandra Leggitt earned a career-best 9.600. Sophia Hocini set a season-high 9.825 on floor that matched Avery Gee's performance. The beam win is the second straight title for the Bears on that event.
OREGON STATE - Oregon State finished second in a tri meet at STANFORD. Despite falling to the Cardinal for the second time in 2009, the Beavers tallied their second-highest score of the year, 196.600. Mandi Rodriguez notched two more individual wins (9.925s on vault and floor) to improve to a career-best 15 titles this season. Jami Lanz added a pair of 9.9s on beam and floor, then tied a season-high 39.375 in the all-around. Becky Colvin set a career-best 9.85 on the vault. D'Anna Piro tied the highest bars lead-off of the season for the Beavers with a 9.775.
STANFORD - Stanford exceeded 197 for the second consecutive week, set 11 individual season-bests, one team event best, and a career-high mark of 9.95 by Carly Janiga on the balance beam, as it extended its best-ever start to 11-0 with a victory over OREGON STATE. On beam, Janiga led the Cardinal to a season-best 49.4, the highest team score in any event this year. Allyse Ishino hit season records on her two routines - 9.9 on bars and 9.85 on beam. Freshman Nicole Pechanec hit a 9.875 on the floor for the best score of her collegiate career.
UCLA - The Bruins, competing for the first time since being hit with the norovi- rus in January, scored a monstrous 49.525 on vault to claim victory in a quad meet against Boise State, WASHINGTON and Cal State Fullerton. Elyse Hopfner-Hibbs won the all-around (39.375), placed second on bars (career-high 9.875), and tied for third on beam (career-best 9.85). The latter upped UCLA's team score to 49.2, the team's second-highest beam total of the year. Anna Li won the uneven bars (9.9) and Niki Tom tied for the beam title (9.875).
WASHINGTON - The Huskies traveled south to face UCLA, Boise State and Cal State Fullerton. Washington earned its second-highest team score of the season with a 194.400, but fell to UCLA and Boise State. Senior Ashley Houghting was a bright spot for the Dawgs, winning her fifth floor title of the season with a 9.900.
She also tied her career-best vault with a near-perfect 9.950, but the Bruins pulled out a 10.0 to steal the title. As a team, Washington scored a season-high 49.150 on the vault and won the floor with a meet-high 48.975.
~ Pac-10 ~