This Week in Pac-10 Women's Gymnastics
Jan. 6, 2010
Friday, January 8
Salbasgeon Suites Invitational - Corvallis, Ore., 7 p.m.
No. 13 Illinois/Air Force/Alaska at No. 10 OREGON STATE
No. 15 Nebraska at No. 25 WASHINGTON, 7 p.m.
Saturday, January 9
No. 20 ARIZONA at No. 8 Arkansas, 7 p.m.
No. 7 STANFORD at No. 1 Georgia, 4 p.m.
No. 2 Utah at No. 5 UCLA, 4 p.m.
All times are local to site
Rankings from 2010 Preseason Coaches Poll
ARIZONA: Coming off their 23rd-straight postseason appearance, the Wildcats open the 2010 season at No. 20 in the GymInfo Preseason Coaches’ Poll. RS-SR Sarah Tomczyk, an All-Pac-10 first team selection for floor last season, scored a 9.775 on the apparatus at the NCAA National Championship last season. SO Rebecca Cardenas, an All-Pac-10 second team selection on floor and SO Deanna Graham, an All-Pac-10 second team selection on vault, add depth for head coach Bill Ryden.
ARIZONA STATE: After finishing fifth at the NCAA South Central Regional last season, the Sun Devils are led by JRs Mary Atkinson and Beate Jones. Jones, an All-Pac-10 first team selection in the all-around last season, will lead a group of 10 underclassmen. Head coach John Spini adds four freshmen: Amelia Rew, Nicole Johnson, Jordan McInyre and Christina Salavec who are expected to make an immediate impact.
CALIFORNIA: A 2009 All-Pac-10 honoree and lone senior Sophia Hocini is the veteran on a squad that welcomes seven newcomers. Hocini has competed at the NCAA Regionals in her first three seasons and will be looked upon for experience, along with JRs Stefanie Cheng and Avery Gee. Cheng was a first team All-Academic Pac-10 first team selection and Gee qualified for the regionals last season.
OREGON STATE: Nine letterwinning gymnasts return for the Beavers, including SR Mandi Rodriguez, the reigning Pac-10 Gymnast of the Year and a 2009 first team All-American on the vault and floor exercise. JR Jen Kesler, a two-time All-American on uneven bars, will lead a squad with four elite freshmen who are all expected to have an impact in all four lineups.
e 2001, the Cardinal has seven top-10 team finishes and has advanced to the NCAA Super Six four times in eight years. Last year’s NCAA runner-up on the uneven bars SR Carly Janiga returns as well fellow seniors in regional bars champ Allyse Ishino and vault All-American Blair Ryland. Four-time and reigning Pac-10 Coach of the Year, Kristen Smyth also has a solid junior class led by all-around standout Shelley Alexander, and international veterans like Alyssa Brown and Nicole Pechanec.
UCLA: The Bruins return five All-Americans in SR Anna Li, JRs Brittani McCullough and Niki Tom, and SOs Elyse Hopfner-Hibbs and Vanessa Zamarripa. Head coach Valorie Kondos Field welcomes a talented freshman class, led by two-time World Championships competitor Lichelle Wong and former junior international elite Monique De La Torre from Glendale, Ariz.
WASHINGTON: The Huskies are coming off their highest Pac-10 finish, fourth place, in the last six years. Under the guidance of head coach Joanne Bowers, Washington has advanced to the West Regionals three-straight years and has sent individuals to the NCAA Nationals in two-of-three years. With no seniors, JR Samantha Walior and SO Hatsune Akaogi will be looked upon for experience.