Sun Devil Gymnasts Compete Against No. 6 UCLA in First Home Meet of 2007

Jan. 22, 2007

This Week --
The Arizona State Sun Devil hosts No. 6 UCLA in its first home meet of the 2007 season on January 26 at 7:30 p.m. MT. This week's meet is Club Night where the Sun Devil gymnasts invite gymnastics club from across the Valley to cheer them on.The Sun Devils, under 27th-year head coach John Spini, return 12 gymnasts to the squad. After finishing ninth at last year's Championships and taking first in the North Central Regional, Spini and the Sun Devils look to compete in the NCAA Championships again this season. Spini is currently ASU's longest-tenured head coach, and is second on the all-time Sun Devil head coaching list. Former Sun Devil women's tennis coaching legend Anne Pittman holds the distinction as the longest-tenured ASU head coach at 31 seasons. Spini's regular-season record is now 316-118-2. His won-loss record at home is 168-27-1.

ASU In The Rankings --
The Arizona State women's gymnastics team was ranked 11th in the Preseason Coaches' Poll released Friday by the National Association of Collegiate Gymnastics Coaches. While ASU is not ranked overall as a team this week, they are ranked 12th in the floor exercise. Individually, Lauren Powell is ranked 21st in the all-around (39.050) and 24th on bars (9.850), April Boone is ranked sixth on beam (9.850) and 19th on floor (9.850), and Cassandra Jusino is ranked 16th on vault (9.850).

ASU Faces Nation's Finest --
The Sun Devils look to face seven of the top-ranked programs in the country, four of which are in the Pacific-10 Conference, according to the preseason coaches poll. The Sun Devils begin their season at No. 8 Stanford on Jan. 19. This week, they return home to take on another ranked Pac-10 foe, No. 5 UCLA on Jan. 26. Along with Stanford and UCLA, the Sun Devils also compete against No. 12 Oregon State (Feb. 2), No. 10 Oklahoma (Feb. 9), No. 16 Arizona (Feb. 23), No. 15 Arkansas (March 16), and No. 2 Utah (March 23).

ASU Versus UCLA --
ASU trails the all-time series with UCLA 30-55. The Sun Devils trail in regular-season meets (16-21) and in post-season competition (14-36). The Sun Devils lead the Bruins in Tempe (11-7) but trail in Los Angeles (4-13) and are 1-2 at neutral sites. The Sun Devils fell to the Bruins last season in Los Angeles 194.575-196.675 and also at the Pac-10 Championships.

Returning All-American --
Sophomore Nicole Harris comes back to the Sun Devil squad as the lone returning All-American. Last season Harris capped her stellar season by gathering second team All-American status on beam after scoring a 9.875 at the NCAA Championships in Corvallis, Ore.

Boone Named Captain for 2007 Season --
Senior all-arounder April Boone has been named the team captain for the 2007 season. A leader in and out of the gym, Boone has become one of the most consistent gymnasts on the team. She ended her junior campaign ranked 13th nationally in the all-around. She posted her first career 10.0 on vault, last season. A business major, Boone was also awarded Pac-10 Second-Team All-Academic.

Spini Named 2006 Pac-10 Conference Co-Coach Of The Year --
Sun Devil head coach John Spini was named the 2006 Pacific-10 Conference Co-Coach of the Year by his peers following last year's Pac-10 Championships in Corvallis, Oregon. Spini led his squad to a ninth-place national ranking in 2006 and a fourth-place finish at the conference championships. Stanford's Kristen Smyth, a former Spini assistant coach, was the co-winner along with Spini.

2007 Results --
1/19: vs. Stanford -- ASU scored a 193.075 in its season opening loss against the Cardinal. Lauren Powell placed third (39.050) in her first all-around competition since the 2005 season. April Boone posted a 9.850 on both beam and floor placing third in both those events. Cassandra Jusino scored a 9.850 on vault to tie for second place.

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