The Arizona Wildcats fell to the Bruins 196.800-196.475 on Saturday. Despite the loss, Arizona’s performance in McKale showed nothing but their tenacity and true fight of the Wildcat, capturing beam and floor titles for the team, along with seven #ARIZONASTICKS.
“Coming into tonight, we talked to the team about performing with heart for the community, the university and their teammates,” said head coach Tabitha Yim. “I think we definitely saw that tonight. We had several athletes really step up throughout the meet. They showed that they have grit and that they have belief in each other. I am so proud of my team, my staff and everyone who made this day as special as it was.”
Arizona hit the vault for the first rotation on Saturday evening, scoring a 48.80. Sophomore Maddy Cindric led the Wildcats on the event with a 9.875. Freshman Lauryn Mattson contributed another strong vault to receive a 9.80. Junior Gabrielle Laub and senior Shelby Edwards earned scores of 9.75 and 9.725, respectfully. Senior Jessie Sisler and junior Selynna Felix-Terrazas received a pair of 9.70’s.
The second rotation proved to be a highlight of the meet for several GymCats. Laub earned a season high on the event and a second place finish with a 9.875. Freshman Dani Spencer posted a career high score of 9.85. Teammate and senior Lexi Mills finished right behind with a 9.825. Sophomore Kennady Schneider recorded her highest uneven bars score after receiving a 9.80. Juniors Krysten Howard and Felix-Terrazas finished with scores of 9.775 and 9.125, respectively.
As a team, Arizona placed a season high on the uneven bars with a total of 49.125.
The GymCats picked up their momentum in the second half of the meet, defeating UCLA in the final two rotations. Cindric garnered her first beam title of the season after receiving a career high 9.875. Mills captured second place on the podium with a season high score of 9.50. Freshman Skyler Sheppard unfortunately fell during her series, but Sisler stepped up in the lineup to perform a beautiful 9.825 routine. Howard also received a 9.825.
Arizona finished over UCLA on beam, 49.175-49.150; they also outscored their last home meet’s score to post a new season high on the event.
Floor has proven to be Arizona’s strongest event this season, and that showed on Saturday. Sisler entered the floor lineup for the first time this season and made a big impact with a 9.90. Schneider, once again a crowd favorite, also earned a 9.90 and a new career high. Mattson too, earned a career high on the event with a 9.875. Edwards earned a career high, and Felix-Terrazas a season high with scores of 9.85. Cindric posted another season high score with a 9.775.
“Floor is the event where we can give all of our energy to the person competing,” said Laub. “We have complete confidence in each other and we can feel that when we are on the floor. That confidence helps us get excited and helps get the crowd excited too."
The Wildcats finished the fourth rotation over UCLA’s floor score by .25, and posted a new team season high of 49.375.
The team will be on the road for the next few weeks, facing Pac-12 rivals Utah and Cal-Berkeley. Arizona will first take on the Utah Utes on Monday, February 1 at 6 p.m. MST/5 p.m. PT. The Cats will compete the following Monday in Berkeley, Calif. The meet against the Golden Bears will be at 8 p.m. MST/7 p.m. PT. Both meets will be aired live on the Pac-12 Network.
The next time fans can watch the GymCats at home will be against Stanford on Saturday, Feb. 13. The meet will once again be televised on the conference network and will be at 7 p.m. MST.
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