FAYETTEVILLE – After leading Arkansas to the championship of last week’s Cancun Classic and winning the all-around title, sophomore All-American Katherine Grable has been named the Southeastern Conference Gymnast of the Week, the league has announced.
Grable and the Razorbacks are home this week, entertaining Kentucky in the SEC opener on Friday in Barnhill Arena at 7 p.m.
Grable, from Oshkosh, Wis., won the all-around championship in Cancun with a 39.275. She also won beam with a career-high 9.925, tied for second on vault with a career-high matching 9.90 and finished second on floor with a 9.90.
Her total helped the Razorbacks score a 196.45, setting a school record for a season-opening meet. That total was the second-best score in the nation for the opening week of the season, topping scores by No. 1 UCLA, No. 3 Florida, No. 4 Oklahoma and No. 5 Utah, among others.
Arkansas had a 49.325 on vault, which ties the sixth-best in school history, and a 49.20 on bars, which ties for eighth-best. Those marks equal last year’s season highs.
Arkansas won the meet over a field of four other top 25-ranked teams, outdistancing No. 12 LSU, No. 17 Auburn, No. 19 Arizona and No. 25 Iowa.
Earlier this week, Grable was named the national "Primetime Performer of the Week" for gymnastics by CollegeSports360.com.
The SEC award is the first of her career. Grable is the seventh Razorback to earn SEC honors, joining Dana McQuillin, Katie Hardman, Cassie Drew, Michelle Stout, Casey Jo Magee and Jaime Pisani.
As a freshman last year, she won nine individual titles, was a first-team All-American on floor to become the first freshman first-teamer in school history, was a second-team All-American on vault, was an NCAA Regional vault champion and advanced to the NCAA individual event finals where she tied for ninth on floor.
Arkansas’ gymnastics program is in its 10th season. In nine years, the Razorbacks have earned eight NCAA regional bids, won two NCAA regionals, advanced to the NCAA Championship five times, reached the NCAA Super Six, finished in the top 10 in the nation three times, finished ranked in the top 15 seven consecutive seasons, and produced 28 All-America selections and 13 NCAA individual event finals appearances.
In 2011, the Razorbacks tied for the Southeastern Conference regular-season championship, won the NCAA North Central Regional, tied for ninth in the nation, recorded two wins over No. 1-ranked Florida, beat No. 4 Georgia, and set school records with seven dual-meet wins and four road wins.