Inside the Locker Room: By Danielle Ikoma

Feb. 10, 2010

STANFORD, Calif. - With a hard gymnastics week ahead of us, we were prepared to be resilient with whatever challenges lay before us. While the conditioning was lighter, the assignments on the events were not, testing both our physical and mental toughness. Friday's practice was harder than expected. We came out of practice that day though knowing that we could hit our routines under any circumstance and in any condition we may be feeling.

On Saturday Stanford hosted a Dance Marathon, which is held every year to educate and support the community about HIV/AIDS. It is a 24-hour Dance-a-thon, demonstrating students' commitment to service and willingness to help raise money. A few of the girls went and danced for a few hours to help show their support, but unfortunately could not stay for very long considering we had a competition the next day.

We also had two recruits this weekend, one from North Carolina and the other from Australia. They came to watch the meet get to know the team and Stanford campus, but were very tired from traveling and the drastic time change (especially the recruit from Australia).

After a long Friday practice, we were ready to attack the meet one event at a time, one person at a time, and one skill at a time. Our approach for the home meet was to be aggressive and commit to what we had been practicing in the gym, especially on beam. We started off the first event with a huge vault and an amazing stick by Ashley Morgan, which carried us into the next event. On bars Allyse Ishino and Carly Janiga carried the momentum by nailing their bar routines and scoring an incredible 9.925. We started off rough on beam, but brought it back with four strong beam routines, demonstrating our toughness as a team and overall growth this year. On our last event our goal, as usual, was to light up Burnham Pavilion and pull in the crowd by performing and having fun. One of the most exciting highlights was Allyse Ishino's floor routine. It was the last performance of the day and grabbed the attention of every person sitting in the stands. It was a great way to end a great day.

Thanks for joining us this week,


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