Gymcats douse Flames in Chicago
No. 17 Arizona gymnastics opened the season with a dominant road win at Illinois-Chicago on Saturday. The Gymcats finished first in every event.
Head coach Bill Ryden said in a press release that he was happy with their start.
“They did a great job for their first time out,” Ryden said. “For three events, we were on cloud nine.”
Arizona earned a team total of 48.700 on bars, the first event of the year.
Junior Allison Flores tied for first place, leading Arizona with a 9.800 score on bars.
Sophomore Lexi Mills and freshman Krysten Howard had scores of 9.750, and senior Jordan Williams and freshman Gabby Laub added scores of 9.725 and 9.675.
Arizona finished with a team total of 48.975 on vault. The top three scores on vault were given to junior Kristin Klarenbach, sophomore Shelby Edwards and Williams.
“We feel like we have a vault team that should score over 49.000 every time, and we were very close to that [Saturday],” Ryden said.
According to Ryden, the UA made a lot of changes to the lineup prior to the meet.
The third event of the competition was floor, and Klarenbach led Arizona with a 9.900.
“It looks like once again, floor is going to be our best event,” Ryden said.
The final score on floor for Arizona was 49.175. The Gymcats ended the event title with top-three finishes from Klarenbach, Williams and sophomore Jessie Sisler.
Their final score on beam was 47.900, despite three falls.
“To have a really good meet going and then have three falls on beam, we expect more from ourselves than that,” Ryden said. “We are going to have to regroup, figure out what went wrong and make the changes in practice.”
Williams won the title event on beam with a score of 9.850, and Edwards finished second with a score of 9.825.
Williams was the only all-around competitor for the Gymcats, and earned the all-around title by a margin of 0.175.
“I’m very proud of Jordan [Williams],” Ryden said. “She had a great start and a great meet.”
The Gymcats will travel to No. 6 Stanford for a tri-meet on Sunday that will include Sacramento State. Their home opener is Jan. 25 against Oklahoma.
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