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Stanford Seeks Fifth Consecutive NCAA Berth
Courtesy: Stanford Athletics  
Release: 03/29/2011

March 29, 2011

STANFORD, Calif. -

Complete Release in PDF Format

This Week
The Stanford women's gymnastics team received a No. 1 seed to the NCAA regionals and is headed to Ann Arbor, Mich., to compete in the April 2 Ann Arbor Regional for the right to qualify for the NCAA Championships. This marks the 28th consecutive season that Stanford has qualified for NCAA regional competition. In the Ann Arbor Regional - one of six around the country, with six teams each - Stanford and Michigan are the top two seeds and will be joined by (in order of seeds): Ohio State, Iowa State, Minnesota, and Kent State. The meet begins at 3 p.m. PT. The top two advance to the NCAA Championships in Cleveland, April 15-17.

Notable Stanford Achievements in 2011
• Tied for most regular-season victories in school history (20)
• Best team season average (196.450) since 2004
• No. 1 seed for NCAA Ann Arbor Regional
• Ranked No. 4 in the nation
• Ranked among the nation's top 10 in every event
• Has nation's best gymnast, by scoring average, on floor: Ashley Morgan
• Beat defending NCAA champion UCLA three times
• Three times rallied from behind or a tie score in the final rotation to win
• Handed Utah its first home loss in four years
• Handed Michigan its first home loss in three years
• Record against Top 10 teams: 8-3
• Against perhaps the toughest schedule in the country, went 13-4 vs. Top 25 teams

Follow the Action
• Links to live stats and a free live Webcast can be found at gostanford.com, through Michigan's Web site, goblue.com. Friday's practice session also will be shown live.
• Stanford updates can be found on Stanford's twitter account, go to twitter@stanfordwgym or watch meet videos at the team's SWG Live Facebook page.

Stanford's NCAA Regional History
• Stanford has qualified 28 consecutive seasons.
• Stanford has finished in the top two to advance to NCAA's the past four seasons.
• Stanford teams under Kristen Smyth (since 2002) have won four regional titles, were runners-up three times, and have a third- and fourth-place finish.
• Twenty Stanford gymnasts have combined for 36 individual titles, including 31 since 1998.
• Two current Stanford gymnasts -- Shelley Alexander and Allyse Ishino -- have combined for three individual titles.
• Alexander was a two-time regional champion (vault, beam) last year.
• Stanford is seeking its sixth NCAA regional title, all since 1999.
• The Cardinal is seeking to win back-to-back regional titles for the first time.

Ashley Morgan: National Leader
Sophomore Ashley Morgan leads the nation in average score on floor exercise with 9.915. Only Nebraska's Erin Davis on vault (9.928) has a better scoring average in any event in the country. Morgan is on a nine-meet winning streak, having failed to capture first only once, at the season-opening Pac-10 Showcase when she was second with a 9.925. Morgan has scored 9.900 or higher in nine of 10 meets and her lowest score of 9.875 still was good enough to win. Morgan, the daughter of baseball Hall of Famer Joe Morgan, has been locked in a battle with Florida's Ashanee Dickerson (9.920) for the national lead all season. Dickerson has a higher Regional Qualifying Score (9.930 to Morgan's 9.925), but her average of 9.906 isn't as high.

Here are the nation's highest season averages on floor:
1) Ashley Morgan (Stanford), 9.915
2) Ashanee Dickerson (Florida), 9.906
3) Jaime Pisani (Arkansas), 9.904
4) Kylee Botterman (Michigan), 9.886

Stanford's All-Conference Gymnasts
Stanford has six gymnasts who have earned All-Pac-10 honors:

Shelley Alexander, sr.: Won vault (9.95) and beam (9.90) at the 2010 NCAA Southeast Regional in Morgantown, W.Va. ... in her second season as team captain ... first-team All-Pac-10 in all-around in 2011, and on vault (Pac-10 runner-up) and floor in 2009 ... missed first-team All-America by one spot in 2009 NCAA championships on vault.

Alyssa Brown, jr.: A first-team All-Pac-10 selection on balance beam in 2011 and a 2010 second-team selection ... tied for fifth in the conference on vault the past two seasons, and was seventh on beam and eighth on bars in 2011 ... in her first year as team captain ... Canadian national champ on vault and beam in 2006.

Danielle Ikoma, sr.: Earned first-team All-Pac-10 honors in the all-around in 2011 for her first all-conference selection ... a team captain.

Allyse Ishino, sr.: A fifth-year senior and team captain ... a three-time All-Pac-10 selection ... first-team bars in 2008, first-team beam in 2009, second-team bars in 2010 ... won the 2009 NCAA South Central Regional bars title ... 2004 U.S. Olympic team alternate ... missed two meets because of sprained ankle ... has Stanford's highest all-around score this season (39.475).

Ashley Morgan, so.: Tied for the Pac-10 championship on floor with a score of 9.90 ... named to the All-Pac-10 first team on floor ... an All-Pac-10 second-team choice on the floor as a freshman ... has the nation's highest average on the floor this season (9.915) ... has won nine consecutive meets on floor.

Nicole Pechanec, jr.: An All-Pac-10 second-team selection on the floor in both 2011 and 2010 ... has hit 9.9's in three events this season ... in October, competed in the all-around at the World Championships in Rotterdam for the Czech Republic. It was her third world championships.

NCAA Regional Experience
This is Stanford's 28th consecutive NCAA regional appearance, meaning that every gymnast on the roster has been part of a regional qualifying team each year. The following are current Stanford gymnasts (seven) who competed as part of past regional lineups:

Three regionals: Shelley Alexander (2008, 2009, 2010).
Two: Danielle Ikoma (2009, 2010), Allyse Ishino (2009, 2010), Nicole Pechanec (2009, 2010).
One: Alyssa Brown (2010), Ashley Morgan (2010), Jenny Peter (2010). Note: Jenny Peter is injured and will not compete.

Rotation Schedule
Here is the rotation order for the NCAA Ann Arbor Regional Championships on Saturday for Stanford: Floor, vault, bye, bars, beam, bye

Stanford's Most Recent Lineup
This was the lineup Stanford used during the Pac-10 Championships in Los Angeles on March 19:

Vault: Ikoma, Dayton, Pechanec, A. Morgan, Brown, Alexander
Bars: Alexander, Ikoma, Ishino, Brown, Pechanec, A. Morgan
Beam: Brown, S. Morgan, Ishino, Ikoma, A. Morgan, Alexander
Floor: Ikoma, Dayton, Vaculik, Alexander, Pechanec, A. Morgan

Team Scores in the National Rankings
Stanford ranks in the national top 10 in every event, by the Regional Qualifying Scores formula (with average scores):

Team: 4th, 196.715 (196.450)
Vault: 7th, 49.220 (49.165)
Bars: 9th, 49.210 (49.130)
Beam: 5th, 49.140 (49.038)
Floor: 6th, 49.230 (49.188)

Individuals in the National Rankings
Here is how Stanford gymnasts rank among the nation's top 25 in each event, with their RQS (with average scores):

All-Around: 15th, Shelley Alexander, 39.285 (39.242)
Vault: 23rd, Alyssa Brown, 9.880 (9.865)
Bars: 13th, Alyssa Brown, 9.885 (9.870)
13th, Nicole Pechanec, 9.885 (9.803)
17th, Allyse Ishino, 9.880 (9.853)
Floor: 2nd, Ashley Morgan, 9.925 (9.915)

Talent Throughout the Lineup
Here is Stanford's average-score range from 1-6 in each event:

Vault: 9.875 (Nicole Pechanec)-9.805
Bars: 9.870 (Alyssa Brown)-9.763
Beam: 9.833 (Shelley Alexander)-9.721
Floor: 9.915 (Ashley Morgan)-9.758
All-Around: 39.345 (Allyse Ishino)-38.850 (five total)

NCAA Qualifying
The top two teams in the regional advance to the NCAA Championships at Wolstein Center in Cleveland on April 15-17.

Team Seeding
The following is the seeding for Friday's regional based on national rankings, with their records and conference championship meet finishes:

No. 4 Stanford (20-4), fourth in Pac-10
No. 9 Michigan (17-5), first in Big Ten
No. 16 Ohio State (12-8-1), fifth in Big Ten
No. 21 Iowa State (8-7-2), third in Big 12
No. 23 Minnesota (13-7-1), fourth in Big Ten
No. 24 Kent State (17-3), second in Mid-American

Stanford vs. Michigan, Feb. 13, 2011
The teams met as part of a tri-meet in Ann Arbor on Feb. 13 that also included No. 10 Nebraska. Stanford rallied past Michigan in the final rotation (the bars for Stanford) to win. Stanford was competing in its second meet in three days and for the third time in nine days, and became the first team to beat Michigan in Crisler Arena in three years. The victories also gave Stanford a 13-0 dual-meet record, breaking the school mark for best start.

Here are the team scores and winners from that meet:
Scores: Stanford 196.800, Michigan 196.500, Nebraska 195.400.
Vault: Kylee Botterman (Michigan) 10.000.
Bars: Trish Wilson (Michigan), Lora Evenstad (Nebraska), each 9.925.
Beam: Shelley Alexander (Stanford) 9.900.
Floor: Ashley Morgan (Stanford), Kylee Botterman (Michigan), each 9.900.
All-Around: Kylee Botterman (Michigan) 39.625.

Last Time: Stanford vs. Other Regional Competitors
The following are results of Stanford's most recent meetings with teams from the NCAA Ann Arbor Regional:

Michigan: In a tri-meet in Ann Arbor, Mich., on Feb. 13, Stanford beat the Wolverines, 196.800-196.500. They also met twice in the 2010 postseason with Stanford winning each matchup. In the NCAA team preliminary, Stanford finished third to Michigan's fourth for the session's final qualifying spot for the Super Six. They also finished 1-2 in the NCAA Southeast Regional in Morgantown, W.Va. Stanford has won their past six matchups -- all in the postseason.

Mich.igan last beat Stanford at the 2001 (April 1) Northeast Regional in Ann Arbor, with the teams finishing 1-2. That was the last time Stanford has competed in a regional at Crisler Arena.

Ohio State: At the 2008 NCAA Central Regional in Baton Rouge, La., Stanford (197.525) finished second to LSU to advance to the NCAA Championships and Ohio State (195.125) was third.

Iowa State: On Feb. 9, 2007, Stanford (197.275) won a quad meet at home with Iowa State second (196.075), followed by Oregon State and San Jose State.

Minnesota: At the 2004 North Central regional in Denver, Stanford (196.575) won, with Minnesota (192.225) sixth.

Kent State: Stanford (196.775) won the 2010 NCAA Southeast Regional in Morgantown, W.Va., with Kent State (194.825) fifth.

Regional Success
Stanford has won five regional team titles and 36 individual titles in the program's 34-year history. Two current gymnasts have won regional championships. Shelley Alexander captured the vault and balance beam titles at the 2010 Southeast Regional in Morgantown, W.Va., and Allyse Ishino won the uneven bars championship at the 2009 South Central Regional in Fayetteville, Ark. This is Stanford's 28th consecutive NCAA regional appearance.


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