Feb. 20, 2009
NORMAN, Okla. — The 11th-ranked Oklahoma women’s gymnastics squad (6-3) won event titles on vault (49.250), beam (49.075) and floor (49.300) en route to a team tally of 196.375 in a victory over No. 13 Missouri, No. 18 West Virginia and No. 45 Brown at the Lloyd Noble Center on Friday night.
The Sooners led all the way in front of a hometown crowd of 1,261, outpacing second-place Mizzou (196.225), WVU (195.250) and Brown (185.950) in OU’s Flip for a Cause quad meet, promoting Heart Health Awareness and the Go Red for Women campaign.
“I thought we started really well on vault, but have to get much better on our landings across the board on all events,” said OU head coach K.J. Kindler. “Aside from all the technical jargon, it comes down to sticking landings and we aren’t doing that consistently enough and as a result, are giving up precious tenths here and there."
"At the same time, I was very proud of the way we ended on floor," added Kindler. "Closing the meet with three-straight 9.875s, when we knew we were in a dogfight, shows a lot about the character of this team.”
Oklahoma senior Ashley Jackson shared second in the all-around (39.300) with MU’s Adrianne Perry. The pair fell right behind reigning Big 12 Gymnast of the Week Sarah Shire’s 39.400 for the Tigers.
The Sooners jumped out to the early lead with a season-high 49.250 on vault. The final five OU vaulters all scored a 9.825 or higher, paced by Jackson’s 9.9. Jackie Flanery and Melanie Root tallied a pair of 9.85s, while Natalie Ratcliff and Sara Stone both stuck a pair of 9.825s in closing the rotation.
Oklahoma escaped counting a fall after a miss in the second spot on bars, scoring a team tally of 48.750 on the apparatus. The Sooners were paced by Megan Ferguson’s 9.85. OU also received a 9.8 from Hollie Vise and a 9.775 from Haley DeProspero.
Mizzou cut into OU’s lead in the third rotation, but the Sooners still moved to the final apparatus with a 147.075-147.000 advantage. Oklahoma scored a 49.075 on beam, led by Vise’s 9.85, which shared event honors with Missouri’s Shire. DeProspero and Ratcliff tallied a pair of 9.825s, Jackson a 9.8 and Smith a 9.775 as the Sooners escaped counting a fall on their second consecutive event.
OU needed a big score on floor and got just that -- closing with a trio of 9.875s for a team tally of 49.300 to secure the victory. It was Oklahoma’s highest floor tally since posting a 39.325 at TWU on Jan. 17. Kristin Smith, Flanery and Jackson all shared the event title with Perry of the Tigers. Oklahoma’s Jessica Kinder rebounded from her fall on bars with a 9.85 as the Sooners also scored a 9.825 from Ferguson in the leadoff position.
Oklahoma closes out its regular-season meetings against conference opponents at Iowa State on Feb. 27.
The Sooners and Cyclones will battle inside Hilton Coliseum at 7 p.m. (CT). It’s the first of two trips to Ames, Iowa, for Oklahoma this year as ISU hosts the Big 12 Championships on March 21.