Feb. 8, 2011
STANFORD, Calif. - Stanford junior Nicole Pechanec was honored for the Pac-10 Conference's Special Performance of the Week for her efforts on the uneven bars during the Cardinal's dual-meet victory over San Jose State in women's gymnastics on Saturday at Burnham Pavilion.
Starting in the anchor position, and with five clean routines in front of her, Pechanec was able to take some risks and unveiled a twisting release move off the high bar that she invented. That's how the "Pechancova" -- so named because of the surname she used in the World Championships while competing for the Czech Republic -- came to be used in collegiate competition for the first time.
That move, combined with her artistry, execution, and exquisite lines, gave Pechanec a collegiate career-high score of 9.925 to win the event. It far surpassed her previous best of 9.875.
Pechanec also scored a season-best 9.900 on floor -- helping the Cardinal to its highest team score (49.4540) on any event this year -- and hit a 9.825 on her first beam routine of the season, helping the Cardinal improve to 9-0 and maintain its No. 2 national ranking. She finished third on floor and beam.
The Pac-10 weekly honor was the first in Pechanec's collegiate career.
The Jersey Girl and the rest of the Cardinal have two road meets this weekend. First, Stanford takes on UCLA and Oregon State at the IGI Chicago Style Invitational on Navy Pier in the Windy City, and then heads to Ann Arbor, Mich., for a tri-meet with host Michigan and Nebraska.