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No. 9 Women's Gymnastics Travels To Defending Pac-10 Champion No. 5 UCLA
Courtesy: Stanford Athletics  
Release: 02/02/2000

Feb. 2, 2000

This week's matchup: No. 9 Stanford (3-1, 1-1 Pac-10) travels to defending Pac-10 Champion, No. 5 UCLA on Sunday, Feb. 6. UCLA has won three consecutive meets coming into Sunday's meet, and Stanford has won two consecutive matches.

Last Week In Review: Stanford hosted then-No. 20 Washington at Burnham Pavilion on Friday, Jan. 28. The Cardinal took the match with a convincing 195.05-194.75 win. Senior Larissa Fontaine turned in an outstanding performance, taking the individual titles in the vault (9.9), bars (9.9), floor (9.95) and the all-around (39.525). Fontaine was named the Pac-10 Gymnast of the Week for her efforts.

Stanford in the Rankings: Stanford is currently ranked 9th by GymInfo after three meets with an average score of 194.2. The squad is also ranked 16th nationally in the floor (48.6583), eighth in the balance beam (48.55), ninth on the bars (48.65), and 17th on the vault (48.425). Last week, the Cardinal was ranked 10th by GymInfo after two meets with a score average of 193.775. The Cardinal began the 2000 season ranked 11th in the GymInfo preseason coaches poll. In the 1999 season, the squad was ranked as high as eighth during the year.

Gyminfo Rankings as of 2/1
Rank/team          Avg. Score
1  Alabama         196.29
2  Michigan        196.0875
3  Georgia         195.975
5  UCLA            195.525
6  Nebraska        194.7312
7  LSU             194.6437
8  Penn State      194.35
9  Stanford        194.2
10 Iowa State      193.8667
11 Denver          193.7875
12 Minnesota       193.3625
13 Washington      193.2583
14 N. Carolina St. 193.2375
15 Oklahoma        193.175
16 New Hampshire   193.1187
17 W. Virginia     193.1167
18 Arizona State   193.0937
19 Ball State      193.0437
20 BYU             193.0083
21 Florida         192.9437
22 Towson          192.925
23 Maryland        192.92
24 CS Fullerton    192.875
25 Auburn          192.8625

Stanford National Team Rankings
Event          Rank   Avg
Team            9    194.2
Floor Exercise  16   48.6583
Balance Beam    8    48.925
Uneven Bars     9    48.65
Vault           17   48.3417

Fabulous Fontaine: Senior Larissa Fontaine has been a pillar for the Cardinal this season. Named the Pac-10 Gymnast of the week for the week of Jan. 26-Feb. 1, she leads the team in titles won with six. Last week against Washington, she turned in an outstanding meet, recording a 9.9 in the vault and the bars, a 9.95 on the floor, and a 39.525 in the all-around. Those scores were good enough to earn her event titles in those four events. She is the only Cardinal ranked individually in the top 25. She is ranked third in the nation in the all-around with an average of 9.525, which she turned in at Washington, fourth in the uneven bars with an average of 9.9, and 10th in the vault with an average of 9.85. The 1998 NCAA Champion in the vault, Fontaine spent most of the 1999 season sidelined with a broken finger. Her return to the lineup for the Cardinal gives the squad a huge boost in the 2000 season.

First Class Freshmen: Freshman Abby Gair has made an immediate impact for the Cardinal. In her collegiate debut at the quadrangular meet at Arizona State, she placed 11th on the beam with a score of 9.65. She has continued to improve in every event. Against Arizona on Jan. 21, Gair took the event title on the bars with a score of 9.9, and was Stanford's top finisher in the all-around competition with a score of 38.8. Against Washington, Gair posted her career highs in the beam with a 9.775 and the floor with a 9.8. Freshman Kelsey Stillinger has also had an effect of the success of the Cardinal this season. She took her first event title against Arizona in the second meet of her collegiate career on the beam with a score of 9.875. Against Washington on Jan. 28 she improved her career best on the vault to 9.675.

Scouting the Bruins: Fifth-ranked UCLA, the defending Pac-10 Champions, hold a record of 6-4, 2-0 in the Pac-10. Last week, the Bruins defeated then-No. 11 Arizona State 196.65-191.575. The Bruins are led by junior Mohini Bhardwaj, who has taken 10 event titles in the four meets the squad has competed in, including two in the bars, beam and the floor, one in the vault, and three in the all-around. The five-time All-American is currently ranked seventh in the all-around, fifth on the floor and 11th on the vault. Also leading UCLA is the 1999 NCAA Champion on the vault and 1998 Champion on the bars, senior Heidi Moneymaker. This eight-time all-American has won six event titles this season, and 11 top three finishes. Both Bhardwaj and Moneymaker competed for the USA in the World University Games. Bruins teammate Lena Degteva also competed in the World University Games for Canada. Degteva has taken three event titles this season, and has scored no less than a 9.75 in any event this season.

UCLA National Team Rankings
Event         Rank  Avg
Team            5   195.525
Floor Exercise  3   49.2062
Balance Beam    11  48.3625
Uneven Bars     5   48.925
Vault           2   49.0312

Looking Back--The 1999 Season: The Stanford women's gymnastics program has seen unprecedented success in the last few years. In 1999, the squad finished fourth in the Pac-10 Conference and went on to win the NCAA Region IV for the first time in school history. The win put the team into the NCAA Championships for the third time, where they finished tied for 10th place. The team members turned in a fantastic year last season, recording new school records in four events, including six perfect tens. At NCAA Regionals, Katy Herbert tied as the NCAA Region IV Champion in the balance beam, Jenny Wilson finished third in the All Around, and Jennifer Exaltacion placed third in the balance beam. In 1999, the Cardinal produced four All-Americans, Larissa Fontaine, Sarah Harding, Amy Murakami and Kristin Jensen.


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