Women's Gymnastics Host Washington, Raises Money for Breast Cancer

Feb. 13, 2007

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The California Golden Bear women's gymnastics team will host Washington, on Sunday, Feb. 18, at 2 p.m., in Haas Pavilion. This meet has been designated the women's gymnastics breast cancer awareness meet. Last weekend, the Bears finished third at the UNO's Classic, hosted by Arizona State. The Sun Devils won the meet with their score of 196.400. Oklahoma finished second (19.275), as Cal wrapped up the meet with its score of 190.900.

Fans are encouraged to wear pink and pink-out Haas Pavilion. Those fans wearing a pink t-shirt or pants will receive FREE admission to the event. Cal gymnasts will don pink Cal uniforms for the event.

In conjunction with Cal's Feb. 18 meet against Washington the Golden Bear gymnasts will be soliciting flat donations or pledges for every Cal score of 9.5 and above. Cal will be donating all money earned to the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation Bay Area Affiliate. You are also more than welcome to make a flat donation towards the cause. With your help we hope to raise funds to eradicate breast cancer as a life-threatening disease through research, education, screening, and treatment. Pledge forms are located on www.CalBears.com, on the women's gymnastics page.

The Golden Bears rank No. 45 in the country. Cal also received votes in the Troster Preseason Coaches poll. About the rankings: Unlike other rankings, college gymnastics rankings are not based on wins or losses or votes. The teams are ranked by their meet scores alone.

The California women's gymnastics team fell to No. 21 Arizona State and No. 8 Oklahoma in Tempe, Ariz., in Arizona State's UNO's Classic Arizona State won the meet with its score of 196.400. The Sooners were second with their team score of 196.275. Cal finished the meet third, with the score of 190.900. The Golden Bears continued their strength on the floor this season, posting a team score of 48.050, marking their third straight meet with a score of 48.000. Senior Justine Cephus scored a team-high 9.700 in the event. Senior Elyse Wong posted a 9.625, while junior Nicki Wells was credited with a 9.600. On the vault, senior Isabel Garcia showed her dominance in the event with her team-high 9.725 in the event. Both junior Siobhan Luce and sophomore Bridgette Glass scored a 9.650 also on the vault. Sophomore Jessica Kelley posted a 9.750 on the beam, as Wong notched a 9.725 in the event.

The Washington Huskies enter Sunday's meet against the Golden Bears with a 1-4 overall record, and a 0-3 Pac-10 record. In last weekend's meet against Arizona, Washington posted its highest team score in nearly two years. The Huskies, however, fell to the Wildcats, 195.300-193.925. The team posted its season-best bar score of 48.950. All five of the Washington scorers posted their season-best marks. Sophomore Ashley Houghting scored a 9.850, winning the individual vault title.

For the third straight meet, the Golden Bear's highest team event score was on the floor, and Cal is continuing to rank nationally in the event, this week the Bears are 27th. At the UNO's Classic in Tempe, Ariz., this past weekend Cal posted a 48.050. Allison Szutu secured her season-high in the event with her score of 9.625, as did Nicki Wells with her mark of 9.600. Against Stanford, Cal notched a 48.325, with both seniors Justine Cephus and Elyse Wong tallying 9.725, this was Cephus' career-high and Wong's season-best. Cal started the season against Oregon State posting a 48.600. Several Bears posted their career-best, if not their season's best, in the event. Sophomore Joanna Bennett scored her career best of 9.700 at Oregon State, as did Jessica Kelley with her 9.850. Seniors Isabel Garcia set her season high of 9.775 and Elyse Wong notched a 9.675, also against the Beavers. Junior Nicki Wells snagged her season best on the floor with her mark of 9.600.

Senior Isabel Garcia has posted over a 9.700 on the vault in her last 11 consecutive competitions. This dates back to last year's meet against UCLA, Sacramento State, UC Davis on Feb. 10, when Garcia notched at 9.750. This past weekend at the UNO's Classic, Garcia scored a 9.725. In the first home meet of the season against Stanford, Garcia posted a 9.750. Against Oregon State, she notched her career-high of 9.825.

Against Stanford, senior Justine Cephus set her career-high on the floor. The Los Angeles native scored a 9.725 on the floor. Cephus seems to shine on the floor against the Cardinal, as her previous career-high of 9.700 was set last season against Stanford. She showcased her talent a week later at the UNO's Classic, where she notched a team-high 9.700 on the floor.

Senior Elyse Wong has continued to dazzle during her final season. At the UNO's Classic, Wong matched her career high of 9.725 on the beam. Her career-setting mark was set in 2005 against Utah State. A week earlier, Wong scored her season-best 9.725 on the floor against Stanford. This was the highest score since Wong set her career high of 9.875 at Boise State on Feb. 27, 2004. Wong also posted a 9.275 on the bars and 9.025 on the beam. This meet also provided the first time Wong competed in three events since March 12, 2004, against Ball State.

Sophomore Jessica Kelley was sidelined at the end of last season due to an injury. However in her first meet back, the Los Altos native notched her career's second-best all-around performance at Oregon State. Kelley scored a 38.625to finish third in the competition. She currently ranks 15th in the west region and 19th in the Pac-10 in the all-around. Against the Beavers, Kelley posted a 9.475 on the vault, 9.650 on both the bars and beam and set her career-high of 9.850 on the floor. She now ranks fourth in the Pac-10 Conference, fourth in the west region and tied for 21st nationally in the floor exercise.

In November, head coach Cari DuBois announced the signing of Stefanie Cheng (San Jose, Calif./Saint Francis High School) and Avery Gee (Los Altos, Calif./Los Altos High School). Both will attend the University of California in the fall of 2007.

In her fifth year at California, head coach Cari DuBois has already reshaped the women's gymnastics program from the day she arrived on campus. DuBois has posted a 35-41 record at Cal. Also she was named the 2003 Pac-10 Co-Coach of the year and the 2003 West Regional Coach of the Year. In her short tenure, DuBois has guided the Bears to their first back-to-back dual-meet winning seasons since 1991-92 and led the 2003 Cal team to its highest NCAA Regional finish (fourth) since 1992. A year later, Cal finished fifth at the NCAA Regional, the program's best back-to-back postseason showings since 1991-92. Prior to coming to Berkeley, DuBois worked as an assistant for nine years (six at West Virginia and three at Cal under Alfie Mitchell). DuBois also has spent time instructing and choreographing routines at several gymnastics camps and clubs nationwide. DuBois graduated from Ball State in 1992 with a degree in exercise science and wellness and holds a master's degree in athletic coaching from West Virginia. Scott Ryan, in his second year at Cal, was hired in August 2005 to assist DuBois. Ryan served as the director and head coach at Aztec Gymnastics in San Diego, Calif., prior to his hiring at Cal. While at Aztec Gymnastics, Ryan led his teams to 33 state and regional championships in the state of California and national championships in both the United States and Mexico. Also, 18 of his gymnasts earned college gymnastics scholarships. Mike Lynch, is in his first year as a volunteer coach for the Golden Bears.

The Golden Bears will hit the road again to compete at UCLA against Cal State Fullerton and Denver, along with host UCLA. The meet is scheduled for Sunday, Feb. 25, at 2 p.m., in Los Angeles.

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