No. 16 UW Gymnastics Team Opens at Denver
Jan. 11, 2001
This Week: The Washington women's gymnastics team (0-0) travels to Denver, Colo. this week to open its 2001 season. The Huskies will participate in a four-way meet with Denver, California and Maryland at Hamilton Gymnasium at the Univ. of Denver. The meet is the first competition for all four teams. The host Pioneers are ranked 13th in the preseason GymInfo. Preseason Coaches Poll while Maryland stands 23rd in the rankings. The meet gets underway at 6 p.m. PT.
"This is a great starting meet for us," says Husky coach Bob Levesque. "Denver came on really strong last year and the meet provides us the opportunity to see how we stack up against Maryland, a team that we really have never seen before, but they have been close to us in the polls the past few years. We'll put some freshmen out on the floor, so I'm anxious to see how they compete. Your first college meet is always an interesting experience, dealing with the pressure and nerves among other things."
Husky Breakdown: Washington's lineup includes six upperclassmen and seven seniors. Heading up this year's team are seniors Lanna Apisukh, Mandi Klug and Jessica Schedler. The three juniors on the team include Allison Bruce, Sidney Field and Stacy Wong. Washington's roster features seven freshmen, including four, Emily Pritchard, Molly Seaman, Kim Claussen and Gharde Geldenhuys, who are scheduled to compete in the season opener.
Injury Story: Washington will be without junior Allison Bruce during the 2001 season. Bruce suffered a preseason Achilles tendon injury that will force her to miss the entire season.
Wong Finally Set to Go: After being sidelined for most of her freshman and all of her sophomore seasons, Husky junior Stacy Wong is finally ready to step on the floor for a season opener. A knee prevented Wong from competing last season. As a freshman, she performed on bars in Washington's final five meets of the season after missing the first portion of the schedule due to back (disc) surgery. "We're really excited to see Stacy compete as an all-arounder," says Husky coach Bob Levesque. "She is someone that could really have an impact on our scoring."
Last Year: Washington posted a 12-11 record including a third-place showing at the Pac-10 Championships and a fourth-place finish at the NCAA regionals in Corvallis. The Huskies finished 17th in the final GymInfo Coaches Poll. Washington's NCAA regional appearance was its 19th straight. The Huskies were led by all-Pac-10 performer Tiffany Simpson, who tied a school record with a 10.000 performance on floor during the season. Washington All-American Lauren Riesenman made her fourth straight appearance at the NCAA championships, competing as an all-arounder.
Departed Seniors: Washington lost five starters from its 2000 team. The biggest loss was six-time All-American Tiffany Simpson, who was a fifth-year senior last year. She finished her career as the owners of the school records in floor exercise (10.000) and balance beam (9.975). Simpson posted three 10.000 scores on floor during her career. Also graduated is Lauren Riesenman, a four-time performer at the NCAA Championships. Crystal Collins was a steady specialist on bars while Rhyan Pelander and Leah Waarmaki came on strong as seniors and were regulars in the Husky rotation.
Next Up: Washington will head to one of the regional sites to attempt to qualify for the 2000 NCAA Championships.
2001 GymInfo Women's Pre-Season Coaches Poll (Jan. 2, 2001 - first-place votes in parentheses, with total points listed)
Team Points 1. UCLA (22) 718 2. Georgia (3) 674 3. Michigan (1) 647 4. Utah (3) 632 5. Alabama 614 6. Nebraska 553 7. Stanford 495 8. LSU 490 9. Penn State 464 Florida 464 11. Arizona State 398 12. Oregon State 386 13. Denver 341 14. West Virginia 301 15. Brigham Young 265 16. WASHINGTON 246 17. Iowa State 241 18. Minnesota 240 19. N.C. State 155 20. Arizona 142 21. Oklahoma 134 22. Iowa 98 23. Maryland 94 24. Ohio State 85 25. Boise State 83