Women's Gymnastics Continues Momentum Into Pac-10 Championships

March 27, 2007

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The California Golden Bear women's gymnastics team will travel to the 2007 Pac-10 Women's Gymnastics Championship this weekend on Saturday, March 31 at 6 p.m. (MT) in Tempe, Ariz. Last weekend the Bears set the second-highest score in school history with their winning 196.500, picking up victories over Sacramento State (195.150), San Jose State (194.500), UC Davis (193.150) in a meet in Davis, Calif.

The 2007 Pac-10 Championships will be held at Wells Fargo Arena on the Arizona State campus, on March 31. Arizona, Arizona State, UCLA, California, Stanford, Washington and Oregon will converge on the arena to battle for the team title, and five individual titles: vault, bars, beam, floor and all around. Cal will vault in the first rotation, have a bye during the second rotation, be on the bars during the third rotation, hit the beam during the fourth rotation, have a bye the fifth rotation, perform on the floor during the sixth rotation and end with a bye for the seventh rotation.

The Pac-10 Championships in Tempe, Ariz., will be shown taped delayed on April 5 on Fox Sports Net. Check your local listings for times depending on where you live. Jim Watson and Amanda Borden will provide the play-by-play and analysis.

At Saturday night's Pac-10 Championships the Golden Bears hope to break a streak, but not a good streak. Cal has suffered 19 straight Pac-10 losses, including six this season. The Bears last defeated a Pac-10 foe on Jan. 30, 2004, when they outmatched Oregon State, 195.675-195.550.

The California women's gymnastics team finished seventh at the Pac-10 Championships in Corvallis, Ore.
Britani Pittullo scored a team-high 38.850 in the all-around competition. Pittullo recorded a 9.750 on the vault, 9.700 on the bars, 9.675 on the beam and a 9.725 on the floor. The senior finished 12th in the competition. Siobhan Luce tallied a 38.400 in the all-around competition. Luce collected a 9.600 (vault), 9.625 (bars), 9.525 (beam) and a 9.650 (floor). Lydia Williams finished fifth on the bars after she matched her career-high with a 9.850. Williams also matched her career-high on the beam, 9.800. Isabel Garcia notched a 9.775 on the vault and a 9.625 on the floor.

The Golden Bears are ranked 40th in this week's Troester Poll. The Bears also rank 27th on the vault (48.860 V RQS), 41st on the bars (48.475 UB RQS), 31st on the floor (48.775 F RQS). 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.

With a berth into the West Regional on the line the California Golden Bears notched a near-perfect performance, recording the second-best team score in school history of 196.500 in the meet in Davis. The score from the meet fits second in the school's record book, behind the 196.800 the Bears notched against Ball State on March 12, 2004. Cal won the meet, and finishing second was Sacramento State with a 195.150. San Jose State (194.500) and UC Davis (193.150) rounded out the competition in third and fourth respectively. Sophomore Jessica Kelley scored a career best in the all-around of 39.450, winning the competition. The Los Altos native collected a 9.800 on the vault, 9.875 on the bars, 9.900 on the beam and a 9.775 on the floor. Kelley's teammate Siobhan Luce also notched her career high in the event of 39.225. Luce scored a 9.775 on the vault, 9.800 on the bars, 9.875 on the beam and a 9.775 on the floor. The Bears got off to a powerful start, posting a 49.225 on the beam in the first rotation. Cal was only a quarter of a point off matching the school record on the apparatus. The Bear notched a 49.300 on March 6, 2004, at Utah State. In today's meet five gymnasts scored their career highs. The mark tonight was the fourth best in school history. Freshman Sophia Hocini started the rotation off on the beam with her career-high of 9.725. Sophomore Tiffany Tam also notched her career best of 9.825. Luce scored the first 9.875 on the beam since Lauren Shipp posted the number in 2005. Also on the beam, Kelley scored her first 9.900 as a Golden Bear on the beam. Sophomore Bridgette Glass also matched her career high of 9.900 on the beam. Cal continued its momentum on the floor during the second rotation, notching a season high 49.100. Kelley (9.875), Luce (9.775) and senior Justine Cephus (9.825) all scored their career-highs in the event. Junior Allison Szutu matched her career high on the floor of 9.800, while senior Elyse Wong matched her season-high of 9.725. On the vault, Kelley matched her career high of 9.800 she scored last weekend against Air Force. Senior Isabel Garcia scored a 9.825 third time this season. The Bears scored the third best mark in school history of 49.325 on the bars. Sophomore Joanna Bennett got the Bears going on the bars, notching her season best mark of 9.850. Glass scored her career high of 9.900 on the bars. Kelley also set her career high of 9.875 in tonight's meet, while Luce matched her season best mark of 9.800. For the second week in a row, sophomore Lydia Williams also scored a 9.900 on the bars.

The Arizona Wildcats enter the Pac-10 season with a 4-2 Pac-10 record, with their only losses to UCLA and Stanford. The 15th-ranked Wildcat rank 18th on the vaults, 20th on the bars, 16th on the beam and 10th on the floor. Karin Wurm ranks 21st on the all around her regional qualifying score is 39.295.

The 25th-ranked Arizona State Sun Devils rank 28th on the vault, are tied for 27th on the bars, rate 21st on the beam and rank 33rd on the floor. Arizona States' all arounder Nicole Harris ranks sixth in the Pac-10 with a regional qualifying score of 39.265.

UCLA enters the meet Saturday with a 4-2 record in Pac-10 action. The eighth ranked Bruins rank among the best in several events. The Bruins are third nationally on the vault, fifth in the bars, eighth on the beam and seventh on the floor. Tasha Schwikert (49.335) and Anna Li (39.325) ranks 17th and 18th nationally in the all around.

The Stanford Cardinal enters the Pac-10 Championships with a flawless record. The Cardinals have also recorded two wins over No. 8 UCLA during the season. Stanford ranks in the top ten on the bars (fourth), beam (fourth) and floor (sixth). They rank 12th on the vault nationally. Carly Janiga is 13th in the all around competition nationally and third in the Pac-10 Conference.

The Ninth-ranked Oregon State Beavers' Jami Lanz is tied for 10th nationally in the all-around competition and first in the Pac-10. Her highest score this season is 39.625. Oregon State as a team ranks ninth on the vault, 11th on the bars, 11th on the beam and eighth on the floor.

Washington's only Pac-10 victory was a Feb. 18 victory at Cal, 194.800-193.025. Ashley Houghting ranks second in the Pac-10 conference on the vault. She is 11th overall in the Pac-10 all-around rankings. As a team the Huskies are fourth on the vault and fifth on the floor in the Pac-10.

At the UC Davis quad meet, the Bears scored the second-best team score in school history of 196.500. Not since the 2004 season has Cal hit the 196.000 mark. In 2004, Cal last notched its best score in history of 196.800 on March 12, 2004 against Ball State. Cal first reached the 196.800 mark in 2003 in a meet against Arizona. Also at the UC Davis meet this past weekend Cal scored its third-highest marks in school history on the bars (49.325) and beam (49.225).

In California women's gymnastics history a 196.000 or higher has only been accomplished six times after last weekend's record-setting performances. The last to come was the 196.800 (highest) set against Ball State in 2004. During the 2003 season, Cal notched three of these feats posting a 196.800 against Arizona, 196.475 against Washington and Sacramento State, a 196.375 against Boise State. CS Fullerton, UC Davis. The Bears also recorded a 196.075 against Stanford during the 2001 season. Head coach Cari DuBois has overseen five of the six 196.000 or higher.

As the individual scores continue to rise and the potential of a berth in the NCAA West Regional that Cal is hosting increases, the Bears have raised their team scores continually this season. Prior to this past weekend's 196.500 (second highest in school history) the Bears also scored a 194.575 in their final home meet. The Bears continue to raise their scores, as they upended the 22nd-ranked BYU Cougars this past weekend, 198.875-193.800. This trend started against Washington on Feb. 18, when they scored a 193.025, and has continued over the past week with only two scores lapsing below 193.000.

After starting out the season rocky on the beam, the Bears have continued to improved and collected a near perfect-performance at the UC Davis quad meet, as Cal score its third-best score in school history of 49.225. Freshman Sophia Hocini recorded her career-high of 9.725 on the beam, as Tiffany Tam also notched her career-high of 9.825. Siobhan Luce posted her career best mark on the apparatus of 9.875. Both sophomore Bridgette Glass and Jessica Kelley each scored a career-high 9.900, winning the competition.

Already this season, Cal has notched seven meets over 48.800 on the vault. The Golden Bears have also tallied their best scores on the vault since the 2004 season. The Bears rank No. 5 on the vault in the west region and 27th nationally in the event. Cal notched its best score this season of 48.950 in the tri-meet against Air Force and Penn. Senior Isabel Garcia scored her career high of 9.925, winning the event. Against Arizona, Cal notched a 48.825. Sophomore Bridgette Glass won the individual title after posting her career-best 9.875. In the UCLA quad meet Cal posted a 48.875 in the event. Junior Allison Szutu collected a career high of 9.850; her previous career high was 9.675, set twice in 2005.

The Bears continue to post those record breaking scores over 9.900. Four gymnasts have hit a 9.900 or higher on the different events throughout the season. Sophomore Bridgette Glass scored two 9.900 on the bars and beam at the UC Davis quad meet. Glass is the first Golden Bear gymnast to post two 9.900 in the same competition since Stephanie Kim notched a 9.950 on the bars and a 9.925 on the beam on March 12, 2004 against Ball State. Also on Friday night at the UC Davis quad meet, Jessica Kelley notched her first career 9.900 on the beam, tying with Glass to win the event. Also scoring over a 9.900 during the tri-meet against Penn and Air Force, senior Isabel Garcia scored a 9.925 on the vault, the first since Monique Chang collected the score at Stanford on Feb. 20, 2004. In the same meet, Lydia Williams scored a 9.900 on the bars, the first since last season when Britani Pittullo notched the mark last season at George Washington on March 12, 2006.

Sophomore Jessica Kelley won the all around competition after tallying her career high of 39.450 at the UC Davis quad meet. This was the first time since My-Lan Dodd notched a 39.575 in 2004 against Ball State a Cal gymnast scored a 39.400 or higher. The Los Altos, Calif., native put together a perfect performance scoring a 9.800 on the vault, 9.875 on the bars, 9.900 on the beam and a 9.875 on the floor. The 9.900 on the beam was Kelley's first 9.900 she scored as a Cal gymnast in any event. Kelley was also the second gymnast to score a 9.875 on the floor this season. Senior Isabel Garcia also notched the number in the UCLA quad meet.

Sophia Hocini leaped her way into the record book against Air Force. The freshman scored a 9.875 in only her fourth collegiate vault attempt. Hocini's vaults have gotten progressively better throughout her vaulting attempts. In her first attempt against Arizona Hocini tallied a 9.575 and against Air Force and Penn she notched a 9.625. Hocini then collected a 9.775 at the Denver and BYU meet before setting her career best against Air Force. Also at the UC Davis quad meet Hocini scored her career high on the beam, posting a 9.725 in only her fourth collegiate attempt on the apparatus.

On senior night, Isabel Garcia couldn't have asked for better performances. The Fair Oaks, Calif., native has vaulted over a 9.700 on the vault in her last 18 consecutive competitions. This dates back to last year's meet against UCLA, Sacramento State and UC Davis on Feb. 10, when Garcia notched at 9.750. In Cal's final home meet this season, Garcia scored a career-best 9.925 winning the event and etching her name in the Cal record books. This was the first 9.925 on the vault since Monique Chang collected the score at Stanford on Feb. 20, 2004. Against Arizona, Garcia tied with teammate Jessica Kelley for the floor individual title with her 9.850. Garcia now ranks No. 17 in the West region on the vault with her regional qualifying score of 9.805.

Sophomore Bridgette Glass continues to post flawless performances. After being sidelined for the majority of last season, Glass has competed for the first time in her career in the all-around competition in the UCLA quad-meet. She had a solid performance posting a career-best 38.950 in the event. This past weekend at the UC Davis quad meet, Glass notched two 9.900, one on the beam and another on the bars. Glass had previously notched a 9.900 on the beam against Arizona. Also in the Arizona meet, she scored her career-high 9.875 on the vault and her career best on the floor of 9.825.

As the season progresses Siobhan Luce continues to wow judges with her performances. The junior notched her career-best in the all around of 39.225 at the UC Davis quad meet. She put together a solid performance scoring her career-highs on the beam (9.875) and on the floor (9.775). She finished the competition in third. The native of Reno, Nev., previously had posted her career-highest all-around score of 39.075 against Arizona. Against the Wildcats, Luce notched career-best on the beam (9.800) in addition to tallying a 9.775 on the vault, 9.750 on the bars and 9.775 on the floor. Luce finished third overall in the competition.

After being sidelined at the beginning of the season, sophomore Lydia Williams continues to elevate her performance on the bars. At UC Davis Williams matched her career high of 9.900 on the bars she originally scored in the tri-meet against Penn, Air Force. This was the first 9.900 on the bars since former Bear Britani Pittullo notched the mark last season at George Washington (March 12, 2006).

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 43-49 (47 win. percentage) 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.

If the Golden Bears qualify for the NCAA West Regional through the Pac-10 Championships, they will compete at home at Haas Pavilion on April 14, at 6 p.m. (PT). For ticket information please visit CalBears.com or call 1-800-GO-BEARS.

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