Women's Gymnastics Travels to Los Angeles

Feb. 20, 2007

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The California Golden Bear women's gymnastics team will travel to Los Angeles to compete against No. 6 UCLA, Cal State Fullerton and No. 11 Denver on Sunday, Feb. 25, at 2 p.m. (PT). Last weekend in Cal's first annual Flip for a Cure, Cal came up short against Washington, falling to the Huskies 194.800-193.025.

The Golden Bears are not ranked. Cal did receive 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 short against Washington in the first annual Flip for a Cure. Washington won the meet, 194.800-193.025 at Haas Pavilion. The Golden Bears posted their season-best score of the season in all four events. In the all-around competition, junior Siobhan Luce tabulated a career-high 38.925, finishing second in the competition. Luce matched her career-high on the vault with a score of 9.850. Luce also posted a 9.675, matching her career-high on the beam. She also recorded a season-high 9.700 on the floor and a 9.700 on the bars. As a team Cal got off to a quick start on the vault, scoring its season-best 48.775 in the event. All of the gymnasts either scored their career highs or season highs. Both senior Isabel Garcia and Luce matched their career highs. Garcia notched a 9.825, as Luce posted a 9.850. Junior Allison Szutu scored her career-best 9.775, and sophomore Bridgette Glass collected her career high of 9.675. Sophomore Jessica Kelley recorded her season high of 9.650, while senior Justine Cephus also posted her season high (9.575). The Golden Bears continued their dazzling performances, as the team posted its season-best on the bars with a score of 48.225. Kelley (9.675), Szutu (9.700) and junior Nicki Wells (9.750) all posted season highs. On the beam, Glass notched her career high with a 9.800 in the event. Luce matched her season high with a 9.675. The Bears also recorded their season best on the floor, with a 48.800. Cephus scored her career high on the floor, with the score of 9.800. Luce (9.700) and Szutu (9.675) both scored their season-highs, while Garcia matched her season high of 9.775.

No. 6 UCLA enters Sunday's meet with a 6-3 overall record, after posting its second highest team score of 196.650 against Oregon State last weekend. The injury depleted Bruins competed senior Ashley Peckett in the all-around competition for only the fifth time in her career. Peckett tied for second place in the all-around after scoring a 39.250. The Bruins rank fifth nationally on the vault (49.165), bars (49.175) and floor (49.055) and 10th on the beam (48.600).

The Denver Pioneers bring their 11th-ranking to Los Angeles, after already upending the seventh-ranked Bruins 194.900-194.800, on Feb. 10 in Denver. The Pioneers also notched a 197.000-193.525 win over Northern Illinois on Feb. 17. Denver ranks 10th on the vault, 13th on the bars, 17th on the beam and seventh on the floor. Against Northern Illinois, Heather Huffaker scored a 39.375 in the all-around competition.

Cal State Fullerton enters the meet on Sunday after beating Alaska 189.375-181.775 at home on Sunday, Feb. 18. The Titans compete 12-14 individuals on a regular basis during the meets, with not one competing in the all around competition. Against Alaska, they posted a 48.425 on the floor with six gymnasts scoring a 9.5 or higher in the event. Nicole Lim tallied a 9.775 for the Titans on the floor.

Against Washington last weekend, Cal produced its highest team score since last season's San Jose State victorious score of 194.275. The Bears' team vault score of 48.775 was the highest since the 2004 NCAA Regional, in which Cal scored a 49.200. The floor score, Cal tabulated this past weekend was the highest score since its 2004 meet against Ball State, in which the Bears posted a 49.125. The team also notched its season-highs on the bars (48.225) and the beam (47.225); both scores are the highest since last year's Pac-10 Championships.

Junior Siobhan Luce scored a career-high 38.925 in the all-around competition against Washington. The native of Reno, Nev., previously had posted her season-highest all-around score of 38.600 at the beginning of February against Stanford. Last season against San Jose State, Luce set her career high of 38.725 in the all-around. This past weekend against the Huskies, Luce not only set her career high in the all-around, but also on the vault, scoring a 9.850 and finishing second. She also posted her season best on the beam (9.675) and on the floor (9.700). Against the Cardinal this year, Luce scored season highs on the bars (9.775), beam (9.675) and floor (9.600), in conjunction to also posting a 9.550 on the vault. This was the first time Luce had competed in the all-around competition this season.

Senior Isabel Garcia has posted over a 9.700 on the vault in her last 12 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. Against Washington, Garcia matched her career high of 9.825. She originally set this career high in the first meet of the season against Oregon State.

Against Washington, sophomore Bridgette Glass posted her career-high 9.800 on the beam. The Oakley native was sidelined for most of last season with a leg injury, only competed on the bars, where she also set her career-high in that event of 9.800 in only her third attempt. Also against the Huskies, Glass tallied her career high on the vault of 9.675. A week before at the UNO Classic, she has set her then-career best of 9.650.

Against Washington, senior Justine Cephus set her career high on the floor. The Los Angeles native scored a 9.800 on the floor. Cephus previously set her career high of 9.725 against Stanford; she seems to shine on the floor against the Cardinal, as her previous career high of 9.700 was set last season against Stanford. She has continued to showcased her talent with a team-high 9.700 on the floor at the UNO's Classic.

Junior Allison Szutu showed off her talents during the Washington meet. The 5-3 Castro Valley product set her career high of 9.775 on the vault. Her previous career-high off 9.675 was set in her freshman season (2005) at San Jose State, against the Spartans and Stanford. Szutu also for the first time since her freshman season competed on the bars. She notched a 9.700 in her first attempt since March 26, 2005 (when she scored a 9.650 in the Pac-10 Championships). She also scored her season best on the floor, with a 9.675.

Sophomore Jessica Kelley made her debut in the all around since the Oregon State meet in which she notched her season-best score of 38.625. The Los Altos native posted a 38.450 in her second attempt in the all-around against Washington. In a flawless routine Kelley matched her career high on the floor of 9.850 against the Huskies. She also recorded her season best on the vault (9.650) and beam (9.675). In her season-best all-around performance against the Beavers, Kelley posted a 9.475 on the vault, tallied a 9.650 on both the bars and beam, and set her career high of 9.850 on the floor.

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 35-45 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 return home to host No. 13 Arizona on Friday, March 2, at 7:30 p.m. (PT). The meet, which will be held in Haas Pavilion, is the annual Cal women's gymnastics alumni meet.

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