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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Gymnastics season review: top five moments

Tom Price

Tabitha Yim hired to lead Arizona, May 6

When long-time head coach Bill Ryden stepped down after leading the Arizona gymnastics program for 17 years, Greg Byrne went out searching for youth and confidence to bring to the program. He came back with Tabitha Yim, who managed to bring a new-found energy into the locker room and push her team every step of the way. Yim brought a winning attitude to the program and her team believed in the coaching staff. By season’s end, the Wildcats were able to place fourth overall at regionals.

Arizona tops ASU in Tempe, Feb. 22

Defeating an arch rival is always a sweet moment. For Arizona, it was the destruction of the Sun Devils, who fell to Arizona 196.375-193.975. The meet capped off with Jessie Sisler, Kennady Schneider and Krysten Howard hitting their routines of 9.875, all consecutively.

Senior Day leads to highest score of the season, March 11

Five GymCats competed for the final time in McKale Center when the Wildcats defeated BYU 196.850-195.400. The mark was the highest of the season for Arizona, as the GymCats picked up 10 #ARIZONASTICKs. After the meet, Lexi Mills, Shelby Edwards, Kristin Klarenbach, Danielle Buchanan and Sisler were given awards for their time at the UA.

Athens, here we come, March 21

The GymCats waited in the locker room for their names to be called. It wouldn’t be long until Arizona would be placed in the Athens Regional. For Yim, it would be extra special, as she had brought the team to its No. 30 consecutive regional postseason competition. Buchanan wound up competing for the first time since 2013 on the balance beam in her final time in a Wildcat uniform.

Lexi Mills competes at NCAA Championships, April 15

Mills secured an individual bid and competed at the NCAA Championships on the balance beam in Fort Worth, Texas. She was accompanied by senior teammate Shelby Edwards and her coaches. Mills hit a routine of 9.7875 and placed No. 27 overall.

“Competing at the NCAA Championships was an experience I will remember for the rest of my life,” Mills said. “Being able to represent Arizona at the national level next to some of the best athletes in the nation was a true honor. I’m very thankful for all the support and wouldn’t have been able to get here with out my Arizona family.” 

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