Two Arizona gymnasts will represent the Wildcats in the NCAA Nationals at 1 p.m. today in Pauley Pavilion in Los Angeles.
Seniors Monica Bisordi and Andi McCabe are making their third and second Nationals appearances, respectively. McCabe tallied a 9.9 on the floor exercise at the NCAA South Central Regionals, and Bisordi's score of 39.450 in the all-around division earned her a No. 3 seed in the national all-around competition.
In the team rotation, Bisordi was placed with Iowa, while McCabe will perform floor with Oklahoma.
"We wish the team could be there, but I'm glad Monica's with me," McCabe said.
The regionals were held April 3 in McKale Center. Arizona finished third as a team, one spot away from a nationals berth.
"It's a great honor for these two gymnasts and they certainly deserve to be here," said head coach Bill Ryden. "Everything that's going on - the pressure, the lights - it's another level."
Depending on individual and team performances today, team finals will be held tomorrow and individual finals, which will be televised on CBS at 1 p.m. on Saturday.
"Hopefully I'll be experienced enough to do well and compete against the best girls in the nation," Bisordi said.
No stranger to the nationals, Bisordi qualified last year in the all-around and marked a 38.575 in the meet.
"We have nothing to lose because we want to go have fun, and we have the mentality to make it to finals on Saturday," Bisordi said.
The entire Arizona team went to nationals in 2002, giving both competitors their first taste of the national spotlight under Ryden.
"Experience is something you can't underestimate at this meet," Ryden said.
McCabe qualified on the floor despite being ranked No. 11 in the vault before the regional meet. To step it up in the spotlight, McCabe and Ryden have added difficulty to McCabe's floor routine so she can score higher at the meet.
"It will help me because everyone there has really hard floor routines," McCabe said. "If I do it to the best of my ability, it will help to make the event finals."