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Article Image
Courtesy: Walt Beazley
Stephani Canizaro and the Razorbacks closed their fall on Friday.
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Intrasquad prepares Razorbacks for opener

12/21/2012
Robby Edwards, Athletic Media Relations
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FAYETTEVILLE - Arkansas' gymnastics team is gearing up for the start of its season in January and the Razorbacks held their final intrasquad meet of the fall on Friday in Barnhill Arena.

Ten Razorbacks participated in the meet for co-head coaches Mark Cook and Rene Lyst.

"Overall, the team got the jitters out," Cook said. "We were landing on competition equipment for the first time and did a good job. This was a good way to wrap up the fall and gauge where we are."

Arkansas is led by five All-Americans on this year's roster. Junior Katherine Grable is the most decorated with four All-America honors - two in 2011, first-team on floor and second-team on vault; and two in 2012, first-team on beam and second-team on vault. Grable was also ranked No. 1 in the nation in the all-around for two weeks in 2012, helping Arkansas earn its first No. 1 team ranking.

In 2011, senior Amy Borsellino was a first-team All-American on vault and senior Kelci Lewis was a second-teamer on floor. Last year, junior Bailee Zumwalde and sophomore Stephani Canizaro were both second-team All-Americans on floor.

"Kat was great," Lyst said of her performance Friday. "She's back at the same level she was last year. Stephani competed as an all-arounder for the first time and did a great job. We had a strong night on beam. We've trained well throughout the fall, so that was nice to see."

Zumwalde got the meet started on vault. The rest of the lineup included Lewis, Canizaro, freshman Heather Elswick, Borsellino and Grable.

On bars, Canizaro led off and was followed by Lewis, Borsellino, Elswick, junior Shelby Salmon and Grable. The bars team was ranked No. 1 in the country for three weeks last year.

The beam team included Borsellino in the leadoff spot, followed by Canizaro, Salmon, freshman Keara Glover, freshman Sydnie Dillard, Grable and freshman Erin Freier.

The meet ended on floor where Zumwalde was followed by Canizaro, Elswick, Lewis, Borsellino, Grable and Dillard.

"Kat is healthy and she did a great job," Cook said. "Stephani showed improvement from last year and Amy looked good, too."

"This was a good meet for us to build off of," Lyst said. "We want to come back after the holiday and get off to a strong start in our first meet."

Arkansas opens the season on Jan. 11 in Barnhill Arena when the Razorbacks face No. 11 Georgia. Arkansas is No. 12 in the GymInfo preseason rankings. The Razorbacks get a short break for Christmas, but return next week to continue preparing for the season.


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