Arizona Flips for the Fight vs. UCLA

Feb. 4, 2010

This Week:

No. 18 Arizona competes in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness it’s in annual Flip for the Fight Meet. The Gymcats will host No. 6 UCLA in McKale arena this Friday, Feb. 5 at 7 p.m. Each gymnast will wear a special pink leotard in honor of the life threatening illness. Fans receive $1 off for showing support by wearing pink.

Last Week:

The Gymcats earned another win under their belt in their home opener against Cal 194.700 to 189.375. Though there were a few minor hiccups along the way, the Cats had a strong start in their home territory.

Highlights of the meet included Junior Miranda Russell’s bar set, earning her first place on the event with a 9.850.

“Miranda had the best bar routine I’ve ever seen her do in competition. She has really grown as an athlete on this event – this routine was just amazing.” Head Coach Bill Ryden said.

Other accolades go to Freshman Mykle Douglas, who won floor with a career high of 9.775, and Freshman Molly Quirk, who clinched her first all-around title with a 39.000.

Packed House:

Gymcat fans continued to impress this season, packing the house for Friday’s home opener. A crowd of 1,688 was in attendance, welcoming the Arizona gymnasts back home for another season. Thanks for your support!

Rising to the Occasion:

Freshman Molly Quirk continues to surprise Gymcat fans with her rise to become one of Arizona’s top gymnasts. Against ASU, Quirk performed her way to the podium, earning first on beam and scoring a 39.050 all-around. This was no different against Cal. Quirk had a consistent meet allowing her to take first all-around with a 39.000.

“Molly just continues to impress me. I don’t want to jinx her, but she is definitely in a groove with her gymnastics. She is very confident and always rises to the occasion. She is doing a great, great job.” Ryden said.

Scouting the Opposition:

No. 6 UCLA will definitely be a tough opponent for Arizona this weekend. Coming off of a win last weekend at Arizona State, the Bruins have earned a 5-1 season so far, and are looking to continue their streak. Look out for Senior Ana Li, who won the all-around against the Sun Devils with a 39.45, as well as Junior Brittani McCullough who posted a 9.925 on vault, earning her Pac-10 Performance of the Week.

What’s Coming Up:

The Gymcats hit the road again, heading north to take on No. 5 Oregon State. The meet will take place in Corvallis, Ore. at 7 p.m. Pacific Time.

2009 Review:

The Wildcats completed the 2009 season with an overall record of 12-12 and were able to make their 23rd consecutive NCAA post-season appearance. Thanks to a pristine floor exercise performance, then Junior Sarah Tomcyzk was able to take it one step further and competed floor at the NCAA National Championships. In addition, three Gymcats earned All-Conference accolades, including freshman Deanna Graham (2nd Team Vault), freshman Rebecca Cardenas (2nd Team Floor), and redshirt junior Sarah Tomczyk (1st Team Floor).

Look Out for New Gymcats:

Arizona bolsters a fairly young team, including four fresh new faces. These include: Aubree Cristello from Glenville, NY, Mykle Douglas from Plano, TX, Ellen Pitluck from Chicago, IL, and Molly Quirk from Glenmont, NY.

Pre-season Rankings:

The Arizona Gymcats head into the season ranked No. 20 in the 2010 Women’s Pre-Season Coaches poll. They are one of only five Pac-10 schools to be rated. The others include No. 4 UCLA, No. 7 Stanford, No 10 Oregon State, and No. 25 Washington. Arizona State was listed as another team receiving votes for consideration.

Stacked Schedule:

Arizona faces an extremely stacked schedule this season, competing against nine schools ranked in the pre-season poll. This includes some tough meets early on, including opening the season against No. 8 Arkansas, then No. 7 Stanford immediately after. The Gymcats must also take on No. 5 UCLA, No. 10 Oregon State, No. 3 Alabama, No. 15 Nebraska, No. 21 West Virginia, No. 22 Minnesota, and No. 25 Washington.

Ryden’s Record:

Head Coach Bill Ryden earned his 150th win last season, totaling his career and school record to become 152-153-3 after last Friday’s home opener.

Pac-10 Championships in the Desert:

Arizona will have the honor of hosting the Pac-10 Championships on March 27 at 4 p.m. The last time the Wildcats hosted the championships was in 2004. Tickets are available for purchase through the McKale Center Ticket Office.


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