UA gymnastics team faces Div. II champs

Arizona Daily Wildcat

GYMNASTICS

A champion is a champion.

And tomorrow night, the UA gymnastics team will travel to Denton, Texas, to face Division II defending national champion Texas Woman's University.

Although the Pioneers are a Division II team, they have shown they can compete with Division I teams like Oklahoma, Missouri and Iowa State.

"Just because they are Division II does not mean they will be an easy team to beat," UA coach Jim Gault said. "They are no slouches."

Texas Woman's coach Frank Kudlac said he is looking forward to his team's matchup with Arizona because it will give him a chance to see where his team is right now.

"This game will be our first meet of the year," Kudlac said. "And playing against a team like Arizona can only make us better."

The UA last competed against the Pioneers in the third meet of the 1994 season and beat them 190.95 to 182.65 in what was one of Arizona's best performances of the season. Junior Darci Wambsgans led the field in the all-around (38.950) and on the vault (9.80) and senior Nicole Garrett set personal bests on the vault (9.80) and the bars (9.80).

Junior Karen Tierney and redshirt freshman Tenli Poggemeyer have led the Wildcats since their season-opening win over Washington Jan. 13. Against the Huskies, Tierney scored a 38.850 on the all-around. Pogge-meyer gave impressive performances in both the vault (9.65) and the beam (9.70). But a major morale boost will be the return of Garrett and All-American Jenna Karadbil. Garrett performed in the vault against Washington and scored a game-high 9.775 before injuring her arm on the bars.

Gault feels that with all of his performers healthy, this weekend's matchup will help the Wildcats prepare for Utah, which they face next week.

"We need to clean up some of our routines and, more specifically, eliminate some of our falls on the bars," Gault said. "If we can do that and stay consistent on the beam and vault, we will be successful."

Arlie Rahn

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