Loaded Gymcats look forward to 2015
The season concluded for Arizona women’s gymnastics after its poor display at the Baton Rouge Regional, so head coach Bill Ryden and his team went back to the drawing board to make improvements and begin preparing for next year.
“We have a very strong returning class that will be seniors next year,” Ryden said. “Kristin [Klarenbach], Amber [Wobma] and Allison [Flores] all had exceptional years and, if anything, even leading by example will be a very strong thing for us.”
These three current juniors have been leaders throughout the season and have pushed themselves constantly, encouraging their teammates to be the best they can.
Flores said that she is ready for the recruits to come in next year and ready to be the leader that she has learned how to be since the Gymcat injuries at the beginning of the season.
Senior Shana Sangston earned First-team All-Academic honors for the third time in her gymnastics career. Sangston earned a 3.84 GPA.
“I have been doing gymnastics for 17 years, and it is weird that it is coming to an end,” Flores said. “I want to finish out my career on a high note and I hope next year we can put all the puzzle pieces together and go out with a bang.”
Ryden said he is confident that the new recruits will do just that, putting together all the pieces and bringing more youth to the squad.
“We are going to be bringing in four athletes … that bring us a lot of gymnastics with young, healthy bodies,” Ryden said. “The thing about our sport is by the time that they get to be a senior, they have been beat on a lot. We will still be a young team, with over half the team being freshmen and sophomores. That youth will certainly carry with us.”
Yet the other two juniors are also ready to bring their experience to the team. Klarenbach has earned All-America honors and Wobma has added valuable beam and vault performances that have carried the team.
“Off this regional lineup, only Shana Sangston leaves the team,” Ryden said. “All three of our seniors had great careers and did a lot for us, but we are basically losing a beam routine and a floor routine and everybody else returns.”
—Follow Matt Wall @mwall20