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Stanford Women's Gymnastics Opens Season at Washington
Courtesy: Stanford Athletics  
Release: 01/19/2005

Jan. 19, 2005

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THIS WEEK: at Washington
WHEN: Friday, January 21, 2005 - 7:00 PM (PT)
WHERE: Seattle, WA - Bank of America Arena
COVERAGE: Watch The Meet Live - Free Webcast

LAST TIME VERSUS THE HUSKIES
January 30, 2004 - Stanford, CA
Stanford def. Washington - 197.400-195.475

ON THE HORIZON
Friday, January 28, 2005
vs. Oregon State
Stanford, CA (Burnham Pavilion)

SCOUTING THE HUSKIES
While Friday's meet is the season opener for Stanford, Washington has already participated in a pair of meets this season ... The Gym Dawgs started off with a second place finish at the Cal State Fullerton quad meet, and defeated Arizona State at a dual meet in Tempe for the first time in program history last week ... The Huskies are currently ranked No. 18 in the nation ... Senior captain Carly Dockendorf, who won the all-around title at the CSF Quad with a score of 39.300, will not compete in the home opener for the Huskies due to injury ... Freshman Nikki Waiss paced the team on vault against ASU, posting a score of 9.775.

RANKINGS REVIEW
The Cardinal received a No. 3 ranking in the preseason coaches poll, receiving four first place votes. Stanford tallied 554 total votes, just 11 shy of No. 2 ranked Georgia. Defending NCAA Champion UCLA grabbed the top spot, receiving 15 first place votes. Since the Cardinal have not competed yet in the 2005 season, the team is not listed in the current top-25 rankings.

LAST MEET
Stanford rescheduled its January 14th meet with California for the 2006 season. The Cardinal were originally slated to take part in the California quadrangular meet, along with UC Davis and Brown. Stanford will have the opportunity to compete against the Golden Bears a number of times this season, as the two squads will meet at Utah (March 4), and at San Jose State (March 19). California is also slated to host the Pac-10 Championship in Berkeley on March 26th.

RETURNING STARS
With no seniors on the 2005 squad, the Cardinal will be led by a trio of juniors. Natalie Foley (Englewood, CO) returns after an outstanding season in which she garnered five All-American honors. Foley established herself as one of the top gymnasts in Cardinal program history, receiving first team All-American honors on the vault, uneven bars, floor exercise, and all-around, while garnering second team honors on the balance beam. Foley will serve as the team's co-captain along with junior Jessica Louie (Loomis, CA), who competed on the vault, bars, and floor exercise at last season's NCAA Super Six. Louie tied for first on the vault at last season's North Central Regional, scoring a 9.900. Glyn Sweets (Reston, VA), the third junior on the squad, earned second team All-American honors on the vault and bars as a freshman, and is back to full strength after battling injuries throughout much of her sophomore campaign. The Cardinal roster also features a pair of sophomores in Brittany Billmaier (Woodinville, WA) and Stacy Sprando (Portland, OR). Billmaier sat out her freshman season and did not compete due to injury. She is expected to contribute on the beam and floor in 2005. Sprando saw considerable action on the competition floor as a freshman, competing primarily on the bars and balance beam.

The returning group will have to replace five outstanding seniors that graduated from last season's team. Lise Léveillé (Burnaby, B.C.) garnered five All-American honors in her senior campaign, while Lindsay Wing (Tyler, TX) received three All-American selections, and Caroline Fluhrer (Seattle, WA) earned a pair of All-American honors in 2004. Kendall Beck (San Antonio, TX) joins the Cardinal staff as an undergraduate assistant coach after an All-American career on The Farm, and Shelly Goldberg (Mequon, WI) also graduated following a distinguished career at Stanford.

FRESHMAN CLASS AMONG NATION'S ELITE
Coach Smyth welcomes a highly-touted six member freshman class to The Farm for the 2005 season. The group was recently ranked as the nation's second best recruiting class by Collegegymfans.com, being narrowly edged out by Georgia's incoming group. Headlining the incoming class is a pair of gymnasts that competed at the U.S. Olympic Trials last summer. Liz Tricase (Itasca, IL) will jump right into the Cardinal lineup as an all-around performer, while Tabitha Yim (Irvine, CA) continues to rebound from an injury and should be ready to compete early in the season. Stephanie Gentry (Plano, TX) joins the squad after competing in the Junior Olympic Nationals twice, and participating as a member of the National Team from 2000-2001. Lauren Elmore (Bloomington, IN) is a five-time Junior Olympic Nationals Competitor, a former Junior Olympic National all-around champion (2003), and will contribute immediately in a number of events. Alex Pintchouk (Mt. Laurel, NJ) is a two-time Level -10 New Jersey state champion, and competed for Will-Moor Gymnastics. Aimee Precourt (Pasadena, TX) is a two-time Junior Olympic Nationals competitor and captured the Texas State all-around championship in 2004. The six members of the incoming class will be called upon to contribute immediately in 2005.

A LOOK BACK AT 2004
The 2004 Stanford Cardinal gymnastics team capped off a record setting season with a program-best third-place tie with Alabama at the Super Six last April. The Cardinal also garnered a program-best 15 All-American awards, easily eclipsing the previous season's program-high of eight. After guiding Stanford to its most successful season in school history, head coach Kristen Smyth swept the annual coaching awards, being named Pac-10 Coach of the Year, West Region Coach of the Year, and NACGC National Coach of the Year. The Cardinal began the season on a high note, entering the campaign with a school-best No. 6 preseason ranking. But the team didn't hit its stride until February, when the squad started posting record-setting numbers. On February 20, Stanford's five seniors put on a show to remember in their final home meet, leading the Cardinal to a 198.875-195.750 win over California. The team score established a national season-high, while the team scores of 49.925 on the floor and 49.750 on the beam were also the best scores in the country. The Cardinal continued to roll along, as the then-No. 2 ranked squad edged the top-raked UCLA Bruins for the Pac-10 Championship, 197.900-197.875. Stanford entered the North Central Regional as the hottest team in the country, and captured first place with a 196.575 team score. The team then moved on to the NCAA Championship, where more records crumbled as the Cardinal wrapped up the best season in program history.

THE SMYTH FILE
Kristen Smyth returns for her fourth year as Stanford women's gymnastics coach, following an incredible 2004 campaign that saw her sweep the annual coaching awards, garnering Pac-10, West Region, and NACGC National Coach of the Year honors. During her time at Stanford, Smyth has quickly turned the Cardinal program into one of the nation's elite. Smyth came to The Farm in June of 2001 and in her first season, led Stanford to its first-ever NCAA Super Six appearance. The Cardinal continued to flourish under Smyth's guidance in 2003, advancing to the program's third consecutive NCAA Championship. Last season she guided Stanford to its fourth straight NCAA Championship, and capped the most successful season in program history by tying for third at the Super Six. Under Smyth's tutelage, the Cardinal garnered a program-record 15 All-American honors in 2004. ™


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