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Third top 10 final ranking

BY ANDRES FOCIL
Third top 10 final ranking

FAYETTEVILLE – With its tie for ninth in the NCAA Championship last week, Arkansas’ gymnastics program recorded its third top 10 finish in the program’s nine-year history and its seventh consecutive final top 15 ranking.

The Razorbacks earned a spot in an NCAA Regional for the eighth straight year and advanced to the NCAA Championship for the fifth time in six years.

Arkansas tied for fourth in the NCAA Session I Semifinal, missing the Super Six by one spot. The tie for fourth is the second-best finish in program history. The 2009 team finished second and went on to finish fifth in the nation in the Super Six.

With the tie for fourth in the Session I Semifinal, Arkansas finished tied for ninth in the nation with Georgia. Arkansas entered the post-season ranked No. 12.

"We did very, very well," co-head coach Mark Cook says. "We came in fourth and missed advancing by just a little bit. The girls competed hard and they competed well, and we were very pleased.

Arkansas’ five NCAA Championship appearances already rank 18th in the nation. Over the nine years the program has existed, since 2003, the five appearances rank 12th in the country.

In the individual events, Arkansas finished tied for No. 9 on vault, No. 22 on bars, No. 13 on beam and No. 11 on floor.

In the South Central Regional rankings, Arkansas was No. 3 overall, tied for No. 2 on vault, No. 4 on bars, No. 3 on beam and No. 4 on floor.

"This team still has some room for growth," Cook says. "There’s some work to be done, but our potential is outstanding."

Individually, junior Jaime Pisani was No. 5 in the country in the all-around, freshman Katherine Grable was No. 16 and sophomore Jordan Salsberg No. 38.

Pisani was No. 3 on floor, tied for No. 16 on vault and tied for No. 43 on beam. Grable was No. 22 on floor, tied for No. 32 on beam and tied for No. 47 on vault.

In the regional rankings, Pisani was No. 1 in the all-around, Grable No. 3 and Salsberg No. 6.

Pisani was No. 1 on floor, Grable tied for No. 5 and sophomore Kelci Lewis tied for No. 22.

On vault, Pisani was No. 3, Grable tied for No. 11, senior All-American Michelle Stout tied for No. 16 and Salsberg tied for No. 23.

Pisani was No. 11 on bars, followed by Stout tied for No. 21 and junior Mariah Howdeshell at No. 29.

Grable was tied for No. 9 on beam, Pisani tied for No. 11, Salsberg No. 19, senior Stacy Bartlett tied for No. 20 and freshman Scarlett Williams tied for No. 27.

Arkansas’ All-Time Final National Team Rankings:2003 – No. 382004 – No. 252005 – No. 152006 – No. 122007 – No. 132008 – No. 102009 – No. 52010 – No. 112011 – T-No. 9

Final 2011 Team Rankings:1 – Alabama2 – UCLA3 – Oklahoma4 – Nebraska5 – Utah6 – Michigan7 – Florida8 – Oregon State9 – ArkansasGeorgia11 – Illinois12 – Kent State13 – Boise State14 – Penn State15 – Stanford16 – Ohio State17 – Denver18 – Washington19 – Auburn20 – LSU21 – Arizona22 – Minnesota23 – Central Michigan24 – Iowa State25 – Kentucky



Sports Category : Gymnastics (W)