NORMAN, Okla. -- The Oklahoma Sooners (2-3) face Texas Woman’s University (2-3-1) and Air Force Academy (0-4) Sunday, Jan. 29, in Denton, Texas. The meet is scheduled to start at 2 p.m. in the Kitty Magee Arena. Oklahoma is coming off a 195.925-190.050 victory over Southern Utah in their first home meet of the season. With the victory, the Sooners moved to 6-0 in home openers under head coach Steve Nunno.
OU enters Sunday’s triangular meet as the No. 8 ranked team in the nation, while both TWU and Air Force are not ranked. The Sooners are now the highest ranked team in the Big 12 Conference and crack the top 10 for the second time this season.
“We are currently the top-ranked team in the Big 12,” said head coach Steve Nunno. “I’m proud of the way our team has been performing and the hard work they have put into the gym. We need to keep refining our routines, but I think we are on the right track in competing in a competitive Big 12 Conference.”
TWU enters the meet coming off a second-place finish (190.900) in a quadrangular meet with New Hampshire, San Jose State and Wisconsin-Eau Claire. The Pioneers conclude their three-meet homestand on Sunday and will face the Sooners again on March 3 in Norman.
“TWU is a strong team with tremendous athletic ability,” Nunno said. “They will bring tough competition and always have great fan support.”
Air Force enters the meet coming off a third-place finish (175.050) versus Centenary and Missouri. Senior Lauren Robison has been the Falcon’s top performer this season. Last week, she collected Air Force’s top scores on every event, including a team-best 37.475 in the all-around to finish fourth.
“Air Force is a little down this year but always comes ready to compete,” Nunno said. “Our team will look to come out and improve on last week’s results.”
The Sooners’ performance against Southern Utah saw improvement from the first meet of the season at the Cancun Classic.
“I’m hoping this weekend we will continue to improve and perform even better then we did against Southern Utah,” Nunno said. “It would be great to carry over some momentum into our meet against Nebraska.”
The Sooners will be back at home on Feb. 4 to open Big 12 Conference play versus Nebraska. The Cornhuskers are currently ranked No. 12 and carry a 4-2-1 record.
Southern Utah Recap
The No. 8 Oklahoma Sooners (2-3) opened their home schedule with a 195.925-190.050 win over the Southern Utah Thunderbirds (0-1) in the Howard McCasland Field House on Jan. 20.
With the victory, Oklahoma moved to 6-0 in home openers under head coach Steve Nunno.
Brittney Koncak-Schumann took first place honors for the Sooners with a 39.375 in the individual all-around competition while Kristen Cox finished close behind with a 38.950.
Oklahoma took an early lead in the first rotation after posting a 49.350 on vault while Southern Utah tallied a 48.450 on the uneven bars. Koncak-Schumann led Oklahoma with a career-high score of 9.95 on the event. Haley DeProspero and Tiffany Willin both contributed a score of 9.90 to finish in a tie for second place.
On uneven bars, junior Lori Winn recorded a season-high 9.80 to finish first, while Willin performed a 9.725 for a second place tie with Southern Utah’s Leah Sakhitab. Sakhitab’s second place honor was the highest finish for the Thunderbirds.
Oklahoma turned in its highest balance beam team score of the season with a 48.950. Koncak-Schumann’s season-high score of 9.875 paced all gymnasts. DeProspero (9.850) finished in second and Winn (9.825) finished in third.
On the floor exercise, Oklahoma took the top four spots. DeProspero’s 9.90 proved to be the high score in the event as the Sooners finished the event with a 49.025. Koncak-Schumann (9.850) finished in second, Winn (9.825) finished in third and Kristen Cox tallied a 9.750 to finish in fourth.
Scouting Air Force
The Air Force women’s gymnastics team holds an 0-4 record under first-year head coach Holly Tedeschi. The Falcons posted their best team total (175.050) of the season with a third place finish versus Centenary and Missouri on Jan. 20, in Shreveport, La. The last time OU and Air Force met was in 2004 in Norman. The Sooners posted a 197.150 team score to defeat the Falcons (188.650).
The team’s only senior, Lauren Robison brings a solid and successful three-year career to the Falcons’ rotation. A 2004 USAG All-American in the all-around, Robison has also racked up numerous accolades from the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation, including all-conference second-team honors on the uneven bars, floor exercise and all-around as a junior. Joining Robison among the team’s leaders are a trio of juniors, who have served on the Falcons’ team throughout their collegiate careers. The group is led by all-arounder Sashonna Iwaniec, who solidified her sophomore campaign with USAG All-America honors in the all-around.
Scouting Texas Woman's University
Oklahoma will face the TWU Pioneers twice during the 2006 schedule. The next meeting between the two teams will be on March 3 at the Howard McCasland Field House. TWU’s head coach Frank Kudlac enters his 27th season with the Pioneers and holds a 391-418-2 all-time record in regular season meets. He has helped guide TWU from a club sport in 1978 to seven USA Gymnastics Collegiate National Championships. The Pioneers won four consecutive USAG titles from 1993-1996, and recaptured the crown in 1998, 2000, and again in 2003 in front of a hometown crowd.
In 2005, the Pioneers captured second-place finishes at the Midwest Independent Conference Championships and the USA Gymnastics Collegiate National Championships. Last season, the Sooners were victorious in both meetings against the Pioneers. OU topped TWU in the first meet 193.6-188.65 in Denton, Texas, and won the second meet in Norman, 196.325-191.425.
The Sooners were tabbed No. 8 in the nation following their performance versus Southern Utah. The Sooners crack the top 10 for the second time this season and are currently the highest ranked team in the Big 12. Unlike other collegiate athletic rankings, collegiate gymnastic rankings are not based on wins and losses or votes. Gymnastics teams are ranked by their meet scores alone. From Jan. 9-Feb. 16, teams will be ranked by their total season average. Starting Feb. 20, teams and gymnasts will be ranked by a Regional Qualifying Score (RQS). An RQS is based on a team’s top six regular-season scores, with three scores coming from away meets. To obtain the RQS, the team’s or gymnast’s highest score is dropped and the remaining five scores are averaged.
Big 12 Conference
The Big 12 is shaping up to be one of the toughest conferences in the country. All four teams are currently ranked in the top 15. Oklahoma leads the way at No. 8 (194.625), followed by No. 10 Missouri (194.458), No. 12 Nebraska (194.258) and No. 15 Iowa State (194.075). Nebraska faces Missouri on Jan. 29 for the first Big 12 Conference meet of the 2006 season.
Big 12 Gymnastics Action
No. 12 Nebraska: at Missouri
No. 10 Missouri: vs. Nebraska
No. 15 Iowa State: at Iowa
No. 8 Oklahoma: vs. TWU and Air Force
Sooners Excel in Classroom
The Oklahoma women’s gymnastics team received an overall GPA of 3.42 during the fall term, marking the second highest single-term GPA under head coach Steve Nunno. The GPA puts the squad No. 1 on campus among women’s sports for the fall term and second among all sports. Four Sooner gymnasts finished the fall with a 4.0 GPA.
“I am extremely proud of our team,” said head coach Steve Nunno. “Not only do we have one of the most talented teams in program history but they are one of the best academically. I am proud of the hard work they put in the classroom.”
Academics have always been a high priority for the Sooners who strive to work hard both in the gym and in the classroom. Last season, Oklahoma finished 12th at the NCAA National Championships and had six gymnasts finish with a 4.0 GPA in the spring semester.
Koncak-Schumann Named Big 12 Gymnast of the Week
Brittney Koncak-Schumann was named Big 12 Gymnast of the Week on Jan. 24 after winning the all-around with a 39.375 against Southern Utah. The junior from McQueeney, Texas, earned the award for the second time in her career.
“Brittney had a great meet against Southern Utah,” said head coach Steve Nunno. “She is really starting to come back to her true form after suffering a knee injury her freshman year.”
Koncak-Schumann won the vault (9.95) and balance beam (9.875) while placing second on floor exercise (9.85) and tying for fourth on bars (9.70) in helping lead the Sooners to a 195.925-190.050 victory over the Southern Utah Thunderbirds. Her vault score was a career high and her all-around total was the third best of her career. Koncak-Schumann is the nation’s third-ranked vaulter and 21st in the all-around.
“She is a great competitor and is more confident then ever before,” Nunno said. “She feels like she has something to prove and shows it in her performance in the gym.”
2006 Big 12 Gymnast of the Week
Jan. 10 -- Emily Parsons, Nebraska
Jan. 18 -- Emily Parsons, Nebraska
Jan. 24 -- Brittney Koncak-Schumann, Oklahoma
Sooners in the Rankings
The Sooners are the highest ranked team in the Big 12 after recording the best team score with a 195.925 versus Southern Utah. Oklahoma also has the No. 1 vault team in the conference and No. 5 in the nation. Brittney Koncak-Schumann is ranked No. 2 in the Big 12 in the all-around (39.375) and tied for No. 1 in the vault in the Big 12 after posting a 9.95 score against Southern Utah. Freshman sensation Haley DeProspero is tied for No. 2 on vault in the Big 12 with a season-high 9.9 and No. 3 on floor exercise (9.9).
4.194.100 Iowa State
4.48.925 Iowa State
Big 12 Gymnastics 10th Anniversary Team
The Big 12 is selecting 10th anniversary teams for its sports in 2005-06 in celebration of its 10th Anniversary season. The Gymnastics team will be selected by the league’s head coaches and announced on March 22. In order to be eligible for the ballot, gymnasts must have won an event title at a conference championship.
Big 12 Gymnastics Championship
The 2006 Big 12 Gymnastics Championship will be Sat., March 25, at 7 p.m. in Lincoln, Neb., at the Bob Devaney Sports Center. Tickets are available through the Nebraska ticket office.
Nunno Signs World Champion
The University of Oklahoma women’s gymnastics team was proud to announce the signing of World Champion Hollie Vise to a National Letter of Intent.
Vise is arguably the best recruit head coach Steve Nuuno has signed in his five-year tenure at Oklahoma. She is the current World Champion on uneven bars and has been an International Elite gymnast since the age of 11.
“It’s a great day for Oklahoma women’s gymnastics,” said coach Nunno. “Hollie will bring world championship experience to our team next year. We have never had an athlete come in that has had a World Champion title.”
Along with earning World Champion honors, Vise was also the National Champion on balance beam and silver medalist in the all-around in 2003. In 2002, she was the National Champion in both the uneven bars and balance beam and a silver medalist in the all-around. In 2001, she earned a silver medal in the all-around and was National Champion on uneven bars.
“Hollie will bring OU gymnastics to a whole new level and a push for a national title in the future,” said coach Nunno. “She not only brings great accolades as a gymnast, but she will also excel in the classroom. We expect her to be a tremendous student-athlete.”
Vise is a member of the World Olympic Gymnastics Academy and was on the first-place 2003 World Champion team. She is the daughter of Eddie and LeeAnn Vise and has three brothers: Brandon (22), Brad (17) and Weston (15). She started gymnastics when she was three and enjoys shopping, watching movies and riding her bike.
Hollie’s grandfather, Burton Gilliam, is an actor and has appeared in many movies and tv shows: Paper Moon, Blazing Saddles, Back to the Future, Charlie’s Angels, Alice Evening Show and is the Pace Picante man. For more information on Vise you can visit her personal Web Site at Hollievise.com.
Oklahoma native Shannon Miller was the last gymnast Nunno has coached with World Champion honors. He helped lead Miller to two world championship titles, nine world championship medals and seven Olympic medals, including a pair of golds at the 1996 Olympic Games.
2006 Team Captains
Women’s gymnastics head coach Steve Nunno announced his team captains for the 2006 season. Kristen Cox and Tiffany Willin will take the leadership role and perform as captains for the team.
Steve Nunno on Cox and Willin:
“I think it will be a fun year with them as captains.” “They will provide great leadership and motivation for the team.”
“Kristen is my first recruit I have coached for all four years. She is a very popular person with team members. It is only right that she finishes out her collegiate career as a team captain. She brings commitment to the team and has a great personality to lead us this upcoming year.”
“Tiffany is one of two First Team All-Americans we have had in the past 15 years. It is only fitting that she is a team captain. She brings great accolades to the team and has a dynamic work ethic.”
OU Vote No. 10 in Preseason Poll
The Oklahoma women’s gymnastics team was voted No. 10 in the GymInfo Coaches’ preseason top-25 poll. It marks the highest preseason ranking in the program’s history and one spot better than last year’s No. 11 ranking.
“I am very proud of the student athletes of the past five years who have laid the foundation for this year’s team,” said head coach Steve Nunno. “I am also humbled by the votes of the other coaches around the country who believe the University of Oklahoma is now a top-ten program and among the great teams in NCAA women’s gymnastics. I have every confidence that this year’s squad will be our best ever.”