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No. 3 Women's Gymnastics Faces TWU Sunday
January 22, 2011

Jan. 22, 2011

 No. 3 Oklahoma (5-0) at Texas Woman's (1-1)
 Date  Sunday, Jan. 23 | 4 p.m. (CT)
 Location  Denton, Texas | Kitty Magee Arena
 Tickets  Order Online 
 Live Stats/Webcast  Live Video | Live Scoring
 Meet Notes  Sooners

NORMAN, Okla. - The third-ranked Oklahoma women's gymnastics squad heads to Denton, Texas, for a dual meet with Texas Woman's on Sunday, Jan. 23 at 4 p.m. at Kitty Magee Arena.

Oklahoma (5-0) will compete in its second team competition in a three-day span for the first time since a two-meet road trip in 2007 to Iowa and Iowa State.

The Sooners enter Sunday’s meet after a nail-biting first place finish against No. 6 Oregon State, No. 23 Denver and Centenary in Norman on Friday night. OU trailed Denver going into the final rotation but finished with a 195.300 after a season-high 49.300 showing on floor to seal the victory.

With OU’s three wins on Friday, OU head coach K.J. Kindler collected her 99th victory at Oklahoma. The Sooners are 99-36-2 overall under Kindler, 32-2 at home, 31-5 on the road and 60-6 in the regular season.

OU leads the all-time series history with TWU, 57-3. The Pioneers are 1-1 this season. After winning their season opener at Centenary, the Pioneers fell to Denver on Jan. 15, 195.000-189.400.

ON THE WEB:
Live scoring and live video for Sunday's meet at TWU can be found at www.TWUAthletics.com.  

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MEET NOTES:
 
BACKING IT UP
Following their first place finish at Friday’s quad meet, the Sooners head to Denton, Texas, for a dual meet with Texas Woman’s on Sunday, Jan. 23 at 4 p.m. This weekend will be the first time Oklahoma has competed in two team events within a three-day span in the regular season since 2007 when the Sooners had a two-meet road trip to Iowa State (Feb. 16) and Iowa (Feb. 18).

WIN NO. 99
OU improved to 5-0 on the season, with wins over No. 6 Oregon State, No. 23 Denver and Centenary Friday. With the three wins, OU head coach K.J. Kindler moves to 99 victories at Oklahoma. The Sooners are 99-36-2 overall under Kindler, 32-2 at home, 31-5 on the road and 60-6 in the regular season.

CLUTCH CLOSING
For the first time this season, Oklahoma trailed their opponent going into the final rotation Friday. The Sooners trailed Denver, 146.275-146.000, heading to floor but OU pulled out five scores of 9.825 or higher, including Kayla Nowak’s 9.9, to seal the quad meet victory. OU finished floor with a 49.300 event total, a season-high on any one event this season.

 
 SOONER TO WATCH

Natasha Kelley | RS-So. | VT-UB-BB 
 
Kelley scored OU’s first 9.9 of the season on Friday during the Sooners’ quad meet. The redshirt-sophomore scored a 9.9 on vault to boost OU to a season-high 49.150 on the event. Kelley also scored a 9.825 or higher on both bars (9.85) and beam (9.825), helping the Sooners rally to a 195.300 team total and take first place in the meet.

   

RECORD-BREAKING
Despite the Sooners struggles on bar, OU set multiple team season-highs and individual highs in Friday’s quad meet. OU set season-highs as a team on vault (49.150) and floor (49.300), while tying its season-high on beam (49.025). The Sooners set season-highs on 14 routines including six career-highs (Madison Mooring - vault, beam, floor; Brie Olson - floor; Taylor Spears - floor; Sara Stone - floor).

FIRST TIME’S THE CHARM
In her first appearance in the OU beam lineup, freshman Taylor Spears scored a 9.875 on the event against N.C. State. With the score, Spears won the individual event title on the apparatus and is now ranked No. 1 in the nation on beam.

CONFERENCE CALL
For the second week in a row, an OU gymnast was recognized as the best in the Big 12 conference. Sophomore Kayla Nowak was named Big 12 Event Specialist of the Week while Taylor Spears was named Big 12 Newcomer of the Week. Junior Sara Stone earned the first conference honor for the Sooners when she was Big 12 Event Specialist of the Week on Jan. 11.

MOVING ON UP
With their 196.175 score against N.C. State, OU improved to a 195.825 season average and moved up to the No. 3 spot in this week’s national rankings. OU has been ranked in the top three spots in 15 of the last 17 national polls.

HOME SWEET HOME
The Sooners are 33-2 in Norman under fifth-year head coach K.J. Kindler. OU’s only two losses at home have come against SEC opponents in Alabama and Arkansas. Top-seeded Alabama knocked off the Sooners en route to the NCAA South Central Regional title in 2008, while OU’s loss to Arkansas in the 2009 home opener marked Oklahoma’s only regular season home defeat in Kindler’s tenure.

Among the 65 home wins since 2000 are notable victories over then-ranked No. 1 Alabama and then-No. 4 Florida in 2010 as well as wins over Auburn, Georgia, Illinois, Iowa State, Missouri, Nebraska, Penn State, Stanford and West Virginia.

DAZZLING DEBUTS
Twenty-one of OU’s 72 routines this season were performed by freshmen. Madison Mooring has competed on three events (vault, beam and floor) in OU’s first three meets after joining the team less than a month ago following her December high school graduation. Taylor Spears competed on two events in the season opener and three events against N.C. State and Friday’s quad meet. Spears scored a 9.875 on beam in Raleigh to win the event title, the score was the highest by an OU freshman this season.

A GROUP EFFORT
Oklahoma did not have an all-around competitor against Arkansas or N.C. State, which is nothing new for the Sooners. OU had an all-arounder just twice during OU’s record-breaking 2010 season (Kayla Nowak at Illinois and Hollie Vise vs.
Washington).

REGULAR SEASON SENSATIONS
Oklahoma is 60-6 in the regular season under Kindler. The Sooners finished the 2010 regular season as the only undefeated team in the NCAA at 14-0. OU has gone undefeated in the regular season twice in the past three seasons.

TOP-NOTCH SCHEDULING
The Sooners face 10 teams currently ranked in the preseason top 25, including four top 10 teams and five programs that competed at the 2010 NCAA
Championships. CollegeGymFans.com recently ranked OU at No. 10 nationally in strength of schedule.

ROAD WARRIORS
Oklahoma opened its 2011 road season strong with a 196.175 showing against N.C. State last weekend. The Sooners are no strangers to road success, OU posted five of its seven highest scores away from Norman for three-straight seasons. The Sooners are 31-5 on the road during the regular season under head coach K.J. Kindler.

CLOSER LOOK AT OKLAHOMA IN 2011
Oklahoma started the season ranked No. 4 nationally, the highest preseason ranking in program history. The back-to-back-to-back Big 12 Champions return nine members of the record-breaking 2010 squad, as the team looks to make its second-straight NCAA Super Six in 2011.

Headlining OU’s returnees are Megan Ferguson and Natasha Kelley. Ferguson is a two-time All-American and was named All-Big 12 on both bars and beam in 2010. Kelley was named the 2010 Big 12 Newcomer of the Year and All-Big 12 on vault and bars. The redshirt-sophomore enters the 2011 season with a career-high 9.925 on vault and 9.9 on both bars and beam.

The Sooners welcome four newcomers for the 2011 season. Hope Bruce and Taylor Spears joined the team in the summer of 2010, while Madison Mooring and Hayden Ward began training with the team in December.

IN ELITE COMPANY
Oklahoma is one of just five programs to advance to the NCAA
Championships every year since 2004. OU joins Alabama, Florida, LSU and Utah on the elite list.

CHAMPIONS IN THE CLASSROOM
For the fourth-straight season, five Sooners earned National
Association of Collegiate Gymnastics Coaches All-American Scholar Athlete Awards. Nitya Ramaswami finished the academic year with a 4.0 in chemical engineering, she was one of just 67 gymnasts in the country and was the only gymnast in the Big 12 to finish with a 4.0.

FOLLOW THE SOONERS
The OU gymnastics program maintains its own Facebook, YouTube and Twitter accounts, which are updated frequently with all of the latest news about the squad. Links to each of these pages as well as a behind-the-scenes blog can be found at www. SoonerSports.com, the official site of the Oklahoma Sooners.

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