Gymnastics Season Preview: Bars
Jan. 3, 2012
SEATTLE - Under the guidance of assistant coach, David McCreary, the bars will be one of the strongest events for the team, especially with the return of senior Ruby Engreitz and the return from injury of senior Hatsune Akaogi.
Engreitz (Kirkland, Wash.) is invaluable to the team on this event and will continue to be a strong competitor on bars for the 2012 season. She was named the team event specialist on bars last season, was named Second-Team All-Pac-10 on bars, and ended the year tied for 20th in the nation with a 9.875 average on bars. She posted her highest bars score at NCAA Regionals with a 9.925.
"Engreitz averaged a 9.875 last year on the event and just continues to improve," Bowers said. "She is one of the top bar workers in the country and will really help us again this year."
The return of Akaogi (Cupertino, Calif.) from medical redshirt last season will also serve as a great addition to the bars lineup. During her sophomore season, she scored a career high 9.850, tying for second place versus UCLA. She also scored a 9.825 on bars four times during her freshman year.
"Having her back on bars is going to really help fill the void of some of the top routines we lost due to graduation. Hatsune is a natural swinger, goes big, and can score," said Bowers.
Phoebe Tham (North Vancouver, B.C., Canada) has been working hard on bars during the off-season, and looks to compete on bars for the first time since her freshman season. During the 2010 season, she led the Huskies on bars with a 9.625 against then-No. 5 Oregon State and scored a career high 9.750 in the final home meet vs. SPU.
"Phoebe has done an amazing job in the off-season to improve her bar routine and we think she will be a great asset to our bar lineup this year," Bowers said.
"Other returners that we continue to expect big things from on bars are Lauren Rogers, Aliza Vaccher, and Amanda Cline," adds Bowers. Rogers (Plains, Pa.) competed on bars in all 12 meets last season, scoring a season high 9.825 twice, including at the NCAA Regionals. Vaccher (Eugene, Ore.) also competed on bars in all 12 meets last season as a freshman and tied for 28th in the country on bars with a 9.775 score. She scored her career high on bars with a 9.875 at ASU last season. Cline (Aurora, Colo.) competed on bars nine times last season, tying a career-high from her freshman year with 9.825 and a third place finish versus Air Force/SPU.