By Athletics Communications
University of Oklahoma
FEBRUARY 03, 2012
Feb. 3, 2012
NORMAN, Okla. – The fifth-ranked Oklahoma women’s gymnastics squad suffered its first regular season home loss in three seasons Friday at the Lloyd Noble Center after finishing in second place with a 196.475 behind No. 9 Nebraska’s 196.750.
Oklahoma (9-2) finished ahead of No. 25 Minnesota and Centenary but fell behind the Huskers after two falls on floor in the final rotation.
"We certainly missed an opportunity tonight," OU head coach K.J. Kindler said. "We went to floor after three pretty strong events. It was one of those moments, we were pretty close with our competition, a little ahead. We were feeling like 'we got this thing, all it takes is just nailing these last six routines.'"
The loss is just the second regular season loss at home under Kindler. The last home loss for the Sooners was on Jan. 26, 2009 to Arkansas.
"I honestly can't tell you what happened," Kindler added. " I felt like the wind went out of the sail. What should be very, very simple for our team looked incredibly difficult."
The Sooners started the night on vault with a 49.225 to tie Nebraska for first place after the first rotation.
Leading OU on vault were Sara Stone and Brie Olson who posted a pair of 9.9s. Stone’s 9.9 from the anchor position was her fourth score of 9.9 or higher in five vaults this season.
Olson tied her career-high on vault with a 9.9 on the apparatus. Olson also posted a 9.9 in OU’s season opener at Kentucky on Jan. 7.
Taylor Spears posted a 9.85 on vault for OU, her fourth straight score of 9.85 or higher on the event in just her first year in the vault lineup.
OU took sole position of first place at the halfway point after a 49.250 on bars, the team’s second-best score on the apparatus this season. Megan Ferguson led the team on bars with a season-high-tying 9.925 from the anchor position. Ferguson also posted a 9.925 on Jan. 21 at TWU.
Hayden Ward started the Sooners off on bars with a career-high 9.9 in just her second appearance in the bar lineup this season. Ward’s previous career-best was on April 2, 2011 when she posted a 9.875 during the NCAA Norman Regional.
Rebecca Clark tied her career-high with her third 9.825 of the year on bars. Clark has posted a 9.8 or higher four times in her five bar routines this season.
The Sooners remained in first after the third rotation with a season-high team score of 49.375 on beam. Ferguson posted a season-high 9.925 as the anchor on beam. Her previous best was a 9.9 on Jan. 21 at TWU.
Clark became the first OU freshman to score a 9.9 after posting a career-high 9.9 on beam for the Sooners. Clark has scored a 9.825 or higher in her last three beam routines with a previous-best score of 9.85 on Jan. 21 at TWU. Madison Mooring posted a season-high 9.875 on beam for the Sooners, her previous best was a 9.825 on Jan. 21 at TWU.
Despite holding first place heading into the final rotation, OU fell behind Nebraska after the Huskers posted a 49.275 on vault, while the Sooners scored a 48.625 on floor. Oklahoma was forced to count a 9.2 on floor after back-to-back falls on the event from Olson and Spears.
OU will see its second top five matchup of the season and second top 10 matchup of the weekend Sunday, Feb. 5 as the Sooners take on No. 2 Arkansas in Fayetteville at 2 p.m.