Searching for consistency
The Arizona gymnastics team is looking to improve on their season high score of 195.375, which they totalled last week against the Boise State Broncos.
The Wildcats will compete against the University of Illinois at Chicago at 7 p.m. in McKale Center.
""It's just repetition,"" said head coach Bill Ryden. ""To get really good at our sport you have to do so many routines that you are bored to tears. When you are finally bored that's probably when you are good. We have just been working on those little areas over and over.""
Deanna Graham is back to form after suffering a back injury, According to Ryden, who said that Aubree Cristello is also healthy.
The Wildcats spent the majority of Tuesday's practice working on the little things as teammates offered advice to each other on how to make their routines that much better.
""I think the performance that we had last week was pretty good, but we still left about .8 to a full point on the floor,"" said assistant coach John Court. ""We just want to have everybody maximize their potential and if that happens that gap will close.""
There have been visable signs of the team's improvements over the last two weeks. After several gymnasts fell against ASU, the Wildcats fell just once against Boise State.
""The last meet we were really good at hitting (our routines) but this meet I think, as a team, we are going to work on the details,"" Graham said. ""I know our coaches always say that, but it's come down to it. We hit our routines, but now it's all about the legs and the pointed toes and the handstands. We could easily improve a whole point.""
Russell leads Wildcats
The Pacific 10 Conference rewarded UA senior Miranda Russell as the Special Performance of the Week for her effort against Boise State. Russell placed in all three events that she participated in against the Broncos.
Russell finished first on bars and floor earning a 9.850 on both and also received second place on vault with a 9.825.
Russell has had a two-year struggle with her knees which caused her to redshirt one season. After scoring a career high 9.900 against ASU, Ryden said he was ecstatic.
""That routine was five years in the making,"" Ryden said. ""She has worked so hard and she deserved that. I couldn't be happier for her."" The team will also contribute to the fight against cancer in their annual ""Flipping for the Fight"" in honor of breast cancer awareness.