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Arizona Set to Host No. 4 Utah

Feb 22, 2022

TUCSON, Ariz. — The GymCats are set to host No. 4 Utah on Friday night for their first Wildcat Pride Night. The meet is scheduled to begin at 6:30 p.m. MST on Friday, February 25 and will be televised on the Pac-12 Networks.

"We had a solid performance on Monday," said head coach John Court. "With a shortened week, we have to focus on our recovery tactics and mental preparation. We have to set the pace from the first event on Friday until the last routine. It will also be our first every Pride meet which will be exciting and we are proud to show support to our teams, departments, and university's DEI initiatives."

The GymCats earned their second-best road score with a 196.025 on Monday at California. Arizona had six gymnasts earn career high scores, with Malia Hargrove and Caroline Herry leading the way with 9.925s on floor. 

A complete preview of Friday's meet can be found below.
 

HOME FOR WILDCAT PRIDE NIGHT: Arizona is returning to McKale to host No. 4 Utah on Friday for Wildcat Pride night. The GymCats are looking to continue climbing on all events after posting one of their best road score of the season at Cal on Monday. The GymCats will celebrate Wildcat Pride night by encouraging fans to be their authentic selves. 

LAST WEEK: Arizona earned its second-highest road score of the season with a 196.025 at California. Malia Hargrove and Caroline Herry both earned career highs of 9.925 on floor. Elena Deets, Alysen Fears, Elizabeth LaRusso, and Emily Mueller also earned career highs.  

FABULOUS FRESHMEN: Freshmen Alysen Fears and Emily Mueller have made huge impacts in the lineups for the GymCats. Fears holds season highs 9.80 on vault and 9.875 on bars, 9.85 on beam, 9.90 floor, and 39.350 in the all-around. Mueller has hit every routine so far this season and holds season highs of 9.800 on vault and bars, 9.85 on floor, 9.90 on beam, and 39.200 in the all-around. 

FRESH FACES: The GymCats welcomed four newcomers to the team this season. Alysen Fears, Elizabeth LaRusso, and Emily Mueller are all freshmen. Lara Burhans transferred to the program from Utah State.

FAMILIAR FACES: Arizona returns 13 gymnasts from last season. MacKinzie Kane enters her senior year and helped the GymCats finish the 2021 season ranked No. 35 on the uneven bars. Six juniors and seven sophomores will return for the Cats. Malia Hargrove enters her junior season following her individual appearance on floor at the NCAA Championships.

G-PAC: Malia Hargrove and Sirena Linton will represent Arizona in the student-athlete driven organzation "Gymnasts for Peace, Action, and Change." G-PAC's mission is to foster diversity and inclusion. Linton was a member of G-PAC during the 2021 season. 

COACHING STAFF: The GymCats have a very accomplished coaching staff. John Court enters his fourth year as head coach and 24th year on staff in Tucson. Taylor Spears, the 2014 NCAA individual beam champion, is in her fourth season as assistant coach and has helped the beam team improve every year. Peter Jansson enters his second season as an assistant with the GymCats, bringing his nearly 30 years of coaching experience. 

PRESEASON POLLS:
Arizona was picked to finish sixth in the preseason Pac-12 coaches poll. In the WGCA preseason poll, the GymCats were picked to finish 27th.