Husky Gymnasts Host NCAA West Regional On April 4
March 27, 2009
Setting the Scene: NCAA West Regional
After the best Pac-10 finish in six years, the Washington GymDawgs are rewarded with home-court advantage in the NCAA West Regional. The Huskies will host No. 2 Utah, No. 11 Auburn, No. 14 Illinois, No. 19 Boise State and unranked (No. 34) San Jose State this Saturday, April 4 at 6pm in Bank of America Arena. Rotating with the Huskies will be at-large all-around selection Eryn Stubblefield from Sacramento State.
Visit the tournament central page on GoHuskies.com for all the latest information about the 2009 NCAA West Regional: here.
NCAA West Regional Rotation Order
The Huskies will be in a favorable rotation order, starting on vault in the first rotation. Washington has a bye in the second rotation before moving to uneven bars in the third and beam in the fourth. The Huskies have a fifth rotation bye before finishing the night on floor in the sixth rotation.
Last Time Out
Washington pieced together a strong outing at the Pac-10 Championship on March 21, earning a 194.375. The Huskies finished in fourth place, their best finish since 2003. Freshman Amanda Cline was the top all-arounder for the Dawgs, finishing sixth overall. Classmate Hatsune Akaogi finished tied for 10th in the all-around. Washington's best finish of the meet came from senior Ashley Houghting, who took fourth in the vault with a 9.900, despite performing on two sprained ankles. Other highlights included sophomore Samantha Walior's floor performance, which garnered her a sixth-place finish.
Six Huskies were named to the Pac-10 All-Academic team, including three first-team selections, more than any other school. Senior Kristen Omori and sophomores Karen Cain and Samantha Walior were each named to the first team while senior Kelly Gilbert (3.33, psychology) and sophomores Haley Bogart (3.42, business) and Kristen Linton (3.37, law, society and justice) were each named to the second team. Cain owns the team's highest GPA with a 3.86 in political science. Walior boasts a 3.72 GPA in business and Omori carries a 3.56 with a dual major in environmental science and aquatic fishery science.
They're Honored, Part II
Three Washington gymnasts were named to the Pac-10 All-Conference teams. Senior Ashley Houghting was honored as a Vault All-Conference first team selection for her strong performances throughout the season and at the Pac-10 Championship. Sophomore Samantha Walior was named first team All-Conference on Floor for her RQS of 9.840 and her 9.850 at the Pac-10 Championship meet. Freshman Hatsune Akaogi was named second team All-Around All-Pac-10, rounding out the accolades for the Huskies. Akaogi has performed in the all-around in every meet this season.
Huskies in the Rankings
Ashley Houghting is the highest-ranked Husky in any event, coming in tied for eighth in the country on vault with a RQS of 9.915. Freshman Amanda Cline moved up a spot and is currently tied for No. 97 (9.825), wrapping up the Dawgs ranked on vault. On bars, Kristen Linton is tied for No. 67 (9.830). Samantha Walior leads the Huskies on balance beam, tying for 50th in the nation (9.840) and Haley Bogart comes in tied for No. 87 (9.810). Houghting paces Washington on floor, earning a ranking of No. 36 (T) (9.880) and Walior comes in tied for 75th (9.840). In the all-around, Akaogi is the top Husky, coming in at No. 82 in the nation (38.810).
As a team, the Huskies are ranked in all four events, coming in at No. 23 on vault (49.015), No. 34 on bars (48.760), No. 28 on beam (48.660) and No. 33 on floor (48.865).
Vaulting to Glory
Senior Ashley Houghting has won the vault in four of the Huskies' eight meets this season. The Welland, Ont. native was the 2007 Pac-10 vault co-champion and finished tied for third in 2008. Houghting has also won six titles on the floor this season, after finishing second on the floor at last year's Pac-10 Championship. The senior co-captain has been battling injury the last few weeks, but returned to the lineup against Denver on Senior Day to score a 9.825 on her signature event, the vault.
Freshman Hatsune Akaogi posted a season-high score on vault against Arizona, one week after taking third on the vault and earning her first all-around title against Cal and Illinois State. Akaogi, a native of Cupertino, Calif., finds herself ranked No. 78 in the nation on the strength of her AA performances this season, culminating in a season-high score of 39.025 against Oregon State, Illinois and Eastern Michigan on Feb. 21. Against Denver, the freshman was the definition of consistent, posting a 9.725 on all four events.
Sophomore Haley Bogart competed in her first all-around of the season against Oregon State, Illinois and Eastern Michigan, notching a career-best 39.125 to place third overall. Bogart has also been a go-to performer for the Huskies, competing on the vault, floor and beam for Washington. Three weeks ago, the native Californian posted a career-best-tying score on vault and a career-best-tying score on beam to help lift the Huskies over the Beavers for the first time in six years. Against Denver, Bogart tied with teammate Samantha Walior to take the title on the beam with a 9.850.
Sophomore Karen Cain has shown steady improvement and marked consistency this year. In three straight meets this season, Cain put up a career-best-tying 9.725 on vault. In three of the last five meets, the Texan has scored a career-best 9.750 on the floor, helping Washignton to big wins over Oregon State, Illinois and Arizona. On March 6, at the Salbasgeon Invite hosted by Oregon State, Cain scored a career-best 9.775 on bars to lead the Dawgs to its second win of the season over SPU.
Freshman Ruby Engreitz is in the vault rotation now, posting a career-best score against OSU, EMU and Illinois with a 9.775. Engreitz has competed all season on bars, but stepped in to the vault lineup for the first time against then-No. 9 Oregon State and then-No. 14 Illinois. The Kirkland, Wash. native competed in her first all-around three weeks ago, scoring a 37.250. Against Denver, Engreitz scored a career-best 9.800 on the vault, tying for fifth.
Senior beam specialist Kelly Gilbert has posted a 9.725 or above in five meets this season, making her an invaluable go-to performer for the Huskies.
Cline Steps Up
Freshman Amanda Cline has posted consistently high marks on vault all season, becoming one of the first freshmen to crack the starting lineups. This past weekend against Denver, Cline's hard work paid off. The Colorado native posted a 9.875 to win the vault, earning her first collegiate event title. At Pac-10s, Cline competed in her first all-around of the year, putting up a respectable 38.825, tying for sixth.
Linton In The Lineup
Sophomore Kristen Linton has been what head coach Joanne Bowers calls one of her 'Steady Eddies.' Linton has scored a 9.700 or above on bars in five meets this season and a 9.700 or above on the floor in all but two meets this season. The Edmonds, Wash. native has won three titles on the uneven bars this year and is ranked No. 67 in the country in the event.
Samantha Walior has won three beam titles this season, and added her first uneven bars win two weeks ago against Denver. The sophomore from Prior Lake, Minn. excels on the beam, scoring a 9.700 or above in all but two meets this season and scoring a 9.850 or above in four of the last five meets. Walior tied her career-best with a 9.875 on the uneven bars against Denver on 3/15 to win her first bars title of the season and second of her career.
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. This season, six Huskies were named Pac-10 All-Academic, including three first teamers, more than any other school in the league. Since Bowers took over as coach in 2007, 17 Huskies have been named to the Pac-10 All-Academic team.
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.