Dec. 13, 2010
STANFORD, Calif. - The Stanford women's gymnastics team has been selected No. 6 in the country, according to a national coaches' poll.
Stanford is among six schools to receive first-place votes, with defending champion UCLA ranked No. 1 with 32 of the 42 possible top votes. However, the poll was taken before UCLA junior Vanessa Zamarripa, the reigning Pac-10 Gymnast of the Year and the NCAA vault champion, suffered a season-ending injury during practice last week.
If the rankings hold, Stanford would reach its fourth NCAA Super Six final for the fourth time in five years. Stanford received a single first-place vote, but may argue that it should be ranked even higher. The Cardinal finished fourth in the nation last season and third in 2008.
Among the top six ranked teams, Stanford is one of four to have reached the Super Six at least three times since 2007. The Cardinal loses 2009 national uneven bars champion Carly Janiga, as well as first-team All-American Blair Ryland, but returns with a solid recruiting class, as well as a strong senior class of Shelley Alexander, Danielle Ikoma, and Allyse Ishino.
Stanford opens its season Jan. 9 at the Pac-10 Showcase in Los Angeles, and opens its home season Jan. 23 against UCLA at Burnham Pavilion.
Stanford faces two top-five teams, five top-10 teams, and nine ranked teams altogether. Stanford competes against No. 1 UCLA four times and is at No. 5 Utah in a Jan. 28 dual meet.
Another highlight is a Feb. 13 tri-meet against No. 9 Michigan and No. 10 Nebraska in Ann Arbor, Mich.
Here are the GymInfo's top 25 teams, with first-place votes in parentheses:
1. UCLA (32)
2. Alabama (3)
3. Florida (3)
4. Oklahoma (2)
5. Utah (1)
6. Stanford (1)
8. Oregon State
14. Penn State
18. Boise State
20. Southern Utah
22. Iowa State
25. Arizona State