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OU Hosts Nebraska in Home Opener
January 31, 2008

Jan. 31, 2008

 OU Gymnastics Double Dual vs. Nebraska
 Date  Friday, Feb. 1 at 7 p.m. CT
 Location  Norman, Okla. | Lloyd Noble Center 
 Tickets  OU Athletics Ticket Office | Call (800) 456-GoOU
 Online  Live Webcast on Oklahoma All-Access | Free Live Stats 
 Promotions  50-Cent Hot Dog Night, Giveaways, Autographs 

NORMAN, Okla. - The University of Oklahoma women's gymnastics squad hosts Nebraska in the team's 2008 home opener at 7 p.m. on Friday at the Lloyd Noble Center in a dual meet with both school's men's squads.

No. 6 OU enters the meet with a 8-0 record, fresh off a season-high team score of 196.550 in last Sunday's competition at West Virginia.

The Sooners are led by senior All-American Kiara Redmond-Sturms who earned her second-consecutive Big 12 Gymnast of the Week honor for her efforts in the win, as the Los Angeles, Calif., native won her fourth-straight all-around, vault, bars and floor title.

Redmond-Sturms enters the meet ranked No. 1 in the nation on the floor exercise, with a season-average score of  9.931. 

Twelfth-ranked Nebraska travels to Norman with a 3-1 overall record, 2-0 in Big 12 matches. The reigning Big 12 Champions, Nebraska's only loss on the year is to second-ranked Utah.

The Cornhuskers are led by senior Emily Parsons, who shared Big 12 Gymnast of the Week honors with Redmond-Sturms, after her efforts in the NU win against conference-rival Missouri.

 Media Guide | Meet NotesLive Scoring | Men's Gymnastics Meet Preview 

Billed as "Youth Gymnastics Night," children in attendance will receive free OU gymnastics bracelets and can register to win an OU bicycle which will be given away following the meet.  In addition to OU men's and women's gymnastics posters, the first 500 fans into the Lloyd Noble Center will be given free OU gymnastics T-shirts and 50-cent hot dogs will be sold while supplies last.  Following the meet, both Sooner squads will sign autographs on the upper concourse. 

Tickets will be available Friday night in the East lobby of the LNC of by calling the OU Ticket Office at 325-2424, or toll free at (800) 456-GoOU.  General admission tickets are $7 and $5 for youth.  Admission to the event is free to OU students with a student ID.

  Women's Gymnastics Notes

LOOKING BACK:                              
The Oklahoma women's gymnastics squad won all four event titles for the fourth consecutive meet en route to a season-high team score of 196.550 as the Sooners bested No. 33 West Virginia (192.7), George Washington (192.05) and William & Mary (187.45) in Morgantown, W. Va., on Jan. 27.

The Sooners posted a season-high team score of 49.375 on floor while tying season bests on vault (49.075) and bars (49.2).

Senior All-American Kiara Redmond-Sturms won her fourth consecutive all-around title with a score of 39.525, that included wins on vault (9.875), uneven bars (9.9) and floor (9.925).


BIG 12 BATTLE:
Nebraska enter Friday's contest with two of the top six scores in the NCAA this season.  Both squads are coming off of season-high team scores as the Sooners posted a 196.550 in their weekend sweep of West Virginia, William & Mary and George Washington, while the Cornhuskers bested conference-rival Missouri by a score of 196.675-195.350 in Lincoln, Neb., last Friday.


TENTATIVE OKLAHOMA LINEUP

VAULT                         
1. Jessica Kinder
2. Haley DeProspero
3. Jackie Flanery
4. Mary Mantle
5. Natalie Ratcliff
6. Kiara Redmond-Sturms

BARS                         
1. Ashley Jackson
2. Jackie Flanery
3. Haley DeProspero
4. Hollie Vise
5. Stephanie LoPiccolo
6. Kiara Redmond-Sturms

Beam                         
1. Kristin Smith
2. Ashley Jackson
3. Stephanie LoPiccolo
4. Hollie Vise
5. Haley DeProspero
6. Kiara Redmond-Sturms

Floor                         
1. Kristin Smith
2. Jessica Kinder
3. Haley DeProspero
4. Jackie Flanery
5. Ashley Jackson
6. Kiara Redmond-Sturms

All-Around                         
1. Kiara Redmond-Sturms
2. Haley DeProspero 


NEW YEAR, SAME RESULTS
Following her all-around title that propelled OU to its highest score of the 2008 season, gymnast Kiara Redmond-Sturms was named co-Big 12 Gymnast of the Week by the league Tuesday, sharing the honor with Nebraska's Emily Parsons.

It marked the second consecutive week that the senior All-American had earned the accolade. 

The Los Angeles, Calif., native won her fourth straight all-around title as the Sooners coasted to wins over West Virginia, GWU and William & Mary in Morgantown, W. Va., on Sunday.

Champion on vault (9.875), bars (9.9) and floor (9.925), Redmond-Sturms finished second on beam to teammate Hollie Vise in the only event she didn't win.

Her four sole wins over the weekend were the most of any Big 12 Conference gymnast.

The senior All-American leads the country on floor with an event average of 9.931 and also holds top-10 rankings in the all-around (No. 8) and on vault (No. 9). 

Redmond-Sturms has won every all-around (4), vault (4), bars (4) and floor (4) title on the year. 



THE BEAM QUEEN(S)
OU junior Haley DeProspero won the beam title at the first three 2008 meets for the Sooners. Her season average of 9.856 on the apparatus ranks sixth in the nation.  The McKinney, Texas, native has company though.  Hollie Vise earned the first event title of her career after a 9.85 on beam at West Va., a week after being named the Big 12 Event Specialist of the Week.


AMONG THE BIG 12's BEST
Leading OU in its win over TWU, Sooner gymnasts Kiara Redmond-Sturms and Hollie Vise were honored as Big 12 Gymnast and Event Specialist of the Week, respectively, the conference office announced Jan 23.

Redmond-Sturms won her third all-around title of the season with a career-high 39.65, the second-highest mark in OU women's gymnastics history. Highlighted by a career-high 9.95 in the win on the floor exercise, the Los Angeles, Calif., native also earned event titles on bars and vault against the Pioneers.

The five-time All-American leads all Big 12 opponents on bars, floor and the all-around average.

It marks the second time Redmond-Sturms has garnered Big 12 honors. She was named the event specialist of the week on Jan. 31, 2007, after posting a perfect 10.00 on vault in the Sooners' wins over TWU, George Washington and Centenary.

Capped off by career high's in both events, Vise finished second on beam (9.9) to teammate Redmond-Sturms and third on the uneven bars (9.825) against TWU to earn her first weekly honor. The Dallas, Texas, native's 9.9 on beam tied for the second-highest non-OU beam score this season in the Big 12.


REGULAR SEASON SENSATIONS
OU has won 21 of its last 22 regular-season matchup's dating back to Jan. 19, 2007.
Winners of all regular season meets on the year, the Sooners last regular season defeat was to Stanford on March 9, 2007 in Palo Alto, Calif.


NO. 6
The OU women's gymnastics squad jumped to sixth in the latest GymInfo rankings, released Monday.  The Sooners cruised past host West Virginia, George Washington and William & Mary in Morgantown, W. Va., on Sunday after posting a season-high team score of 196.550.

The Big 12 features three teams ranked in the top-15, led by Oklahoma's sixth-place standing. Nebraska, who OU faces in its home opener on Friday, is ranked 12th.  Missouri stands three spots back at No. 15.

The Sooners are No. 3 in the country on the floor exercise after posting a season-high team score of 49.375 in the event on Sunday.

OU leads all Big 12 foes on bars, floor, beam and team score.

On bars, the Sooners hold four of the top-5 spots in the conference with Redmond-Sturms ranked first (9.862), Stephanie LoPiccolo fourth (9.819) and Ashley Jackson and Hollie Vise tied for fifth (9.775).

DeProspero is second in the conference on beam while Vise stands third (9.831).

Redmond-Sturms (No. 1), Jackson (No. 3) Jessica Kinder (No. 4) and Jackie Flanery (No. 6) hold top-six rankings on the floor.


COMING UP NEXT...
After the NU meet, the Sooners hit the road for the fifth time in six meets as OU travels to Denver, Colo, on Feb. 9, to face DU. The meet against the Pioneers is slated for a 7 p.m. (CST) start.


Impact Performer 

Kiara Redmond-Sturms | Sr. | Los Angles, Calif.
The senior All-American leads the country on floor with an event average of 9.931 and also holds top-10 rankings in the all-around (No. 8) and on vault (No. 9). 

Redmond-Sturms has won every all-around (4), vault (4), bars (4) and floor (4) title on the year. 



SOONERS OPEN SEASON RANKED NO. 8
The Oklahoma women's gymnastics team was ranked eighth in the preseason GymInfo Coaches Poll, the second-highest ranking of any Big 12 team.

The Sooners return All-Americans Kiara Redmond-Sturms and Stephanie LoPiccolo from a Sooner squad that finished eighth last season at the NCAA Championships under first-year head coach K.J. Kindler, marking a program-best.

OU returns 11 letterwinners from last season's squad that went 20-8 and finished second in the Big 12. 



KINDLER SIGNS THREE FOR 2008

The Oklahoma women's gymnastics team posted its best finish in NCAA history last spring and recruits are taking notice. Head coach K.J. Kindler announced one of the most decorated classes in OU history during the early announcement period, signing three gymnasts to National Letters of Intent.  Megan Ferguson, Natasha Kelley and Sara Stone will join the Sooners in the fall of 2008.
 
"We feel that this signing class will be instrumental in the future of the Sooner Gymnastics Program," said Kindler.  "Megan, Natasha and Sara bring with them numerous accolades including many National titles both in the Elite arena and at the Junior Olympic level.  All three of these women have displayed an absolute desire to be Sooners and we salute their enthusiasm for the University and our program."
 
Ferguson, a Level 10 from Blue Valley High School in Olathe, Kan., trains at Eagles Gymnastics, the former club of current OU gymnast Jacqueline Flanery.  Ferguson was two-time Junior Olympic Nationals beam champion and five-time J.O. Nationals qualifier. She has dominated state competition, winning the level 10 all-around title in 2005, `06 and `07 while sweeping every individual event honor all three seasons as well.

Kelley enters the OU program as a four-time U.S. National Team member.  The senior elite gymnast from Katy, Texas, has found success on both the international and national stage, finishing second in the all-around of the 2006 Visa Championships, after capturing the all-around title a year prior in the junior division of the Visa Championships. In her `06 Visa Championships runner-up finish, Kelley finished second on the uneven bars and beam, and fourth on the floor exercise.  Kelley shared all-around honors at the 2006 U.S. Classic, placing first on the uneven bars, second on vault and fourth on beam and floor. At the 2007 Visa Championships, Kelley finished 10th in the all-around after placing sixth on the beam and ninth on the uneven bars. On the International stage, Kelley won the all-around title at the 2007 Houston International Invitational, placing first on the beam, floor, uneven bars, and second on the vault.  The 17-year old placed second at the 2007 Tyson American Cup and fourth in the all-around of the `07 USA vs. Great Britain International Competition in Lisburn, Ireland. She also captured all-around titles at both the `05 Junior Gymnastics Competition in Yohohama, Japan, and the Olympiad Elite in Ensenada, Mexico, a year prior.  Kelley helped the U.S. squad to a silver medal at the 2006 World Championships as a finalist on floor.

A native of Dallas, Texas, Stone is a member of Metroplex Gymnastics where she is coached by Bryan Streeter, Dave Marus, and Jana and Marcus Harlin.  The Spring Creek Academy senior and junior elite gymnast is a two-time qualifier for the U.S. Classic. She won the all-around title at the 2005 Metroplex Challenge and won the beam title at the 2006 level 10 Texas state competition.


 

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