Feb. 5, 2009
STANFORD, Calif. - Illness forced UCLA out of a women's gymnastics dual at Burnham Pavilion, but UC Davis will take the Bruins' place for the Sunday meet against Stanford, which will be held at Burnham Pavilion at 2 p.m.
The meet is important for Stanford for several reasons: It is Breast Cancer Awareness Day, Alumni Day, and from a gymnastics standpoint, gives the Cardinal an opportunity to improve their Regional Qualifying Score.
The scheduled showdown between No. 2 UCLA and the No. 6 Cardinal was called off Wednesday because of an illness that has affected much of the UCLA team.
The decision to withdraw was made by the Pacific-10 Conference in consultation with the UCLA medical staff because of health and safety concerns of the gymnasts and for those with whom they may come into contact. UCLA's practices from Monday through Wednesday were canceled.
Stanford and UCLA have combined for the past 12 Pacific-10 Conference titles and still will face each other at Stanford this season, at the Pac-10 Championships to be held March 21 at Maples Pavilion at 4 p.m.
Stanford coach Kristen Smyth and her staff wanted to keep the meet alive and UC Davis agreed later that day to participate. Smyth said she is extremely thankful.
Fans are encouraged to wear pink and support breast cancer research by entering to win raffle prizes throughout the meet.
After the competition, the Stanford gymnasts will hold an autograph session.
"We just want to thank Davis for coming here for this very important competition," Smyth said. "This is a big sacrifice for them to fit it into their schedule. But it is much appreciated, especially because this is such a big meet for us."