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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Gymcats down Devils with season-high score

    UA redshirt junior Sarah Tomczyk performs her routine on the uneven bars during a dual-meet win against ASU Friday night in McKale Center. The Gymcats have now beaten ASU two straight times and are on a three-match winning streak overall.
    UA redshirt junior Sarah Tomczyk performs her routine on the uneven bars during a dual-meet win against ASU Friday night in McKale Center. The Gymcats have now beaten ASU two straight times and are on a three-match winning streak overall.

    The No. 19 Arizona gymnastics team made quite a statement Friday night in McKale Center.

    Last season, the squad claimed a Duel in the Desert win against ASU, and with a performance from a relatively young squad like Friday’s, one can only believe that title could be in Tucson for a while.

    The meet was no easy win for the Gymcats (3-5), but hard work and sheer determination earned them their highest score of the season, beating the Devils (1-5) 195.750-195.250.

    The team gained an early edge on Tempe’s finest, as the squad posted 49.075 points to start off the competition on the vault. Freshman Deanna Graham took first in the event with a 9.875, followed closely by redshirt junior Sarah Tomczyk’s 9.850.

    As seems to be the story of their season, the team would push their luck on bars and the early lead was soon gone, putting the heated rivals in a deadlock heading into the third rotation with running scores of 146.825. Tomczyk and Britnie Jones both scored 9.800s on the event, which helped keep the Gymcats from trailing the Devils.

    Lucky for the Gymcats, however, the floor and beam were yet to come.

    “”The beam team wasn’t at their 100 percent best,”” said UA assistant coach Colleen Johnson, “”but they didn’t let little mistakes affect them.””

    Sophomore Kristen Schmieder would post a career high 9.800 on the beam, and senior Beamer Bergeson would score a season-best 9.900 to take first in the event.

    “”I just sit back … and watch Beamer’s performance and just enjoy it,”” Johnson said. “”Kristen is learning quickly, she’s really developing in her role and (Friday night) especially she got up there and shone.””

    The two schools were tied going into the final event, but it was Arizona’s floor event that would seal the deal.

    “”With anybody, I’ll put our floor team against their beam team,”” said UA head coach Bill Ryden.

    The squad threw down 48.925 points on floor – led in part by Bergeson, Bree Workman and Rebecca Cardenas, who all posted higher than 9.800 on the event.

    “”Our floor is really strong, so we never really get nervous heading into floor,”” Bergeson said. “”We just rock floor.””

    Bergeson proved to be a crucial factor in the Gymcat win, and Ryden had a hard time putting into words just how proud he was of her.

    “”What about Beamer? Holy crud,”” Ryden said with a chuckle. “”She really came through.””

    The team only had one fall during the night, on beam, and would go on to win the meet with a season-high score of 195.75, which could reflect in this week’s rankings. The squad has, also, yet to count its scores from its past meet, a win against Texas Woman’s University.

    “”The Duel in the Desert is always a competitive rivalry and it’s been a couple years now since the Devils beat us,”” Johnson said. “”The whole team really pulled it together and we just had a really outstanding meet.””

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