March 11, 2008
IRVING, Texas - After leading the undefeated OU women's gymnastics squad (16-0) to a victory over No. 11 Auburn on March 7, Sooner gymnasts Kiara Redmond-Sturms and Jackie Flanery were honored as Big 12 Gymnast and Event Specialist of the Week, respectively, the conference office announced Tuesday.
Hitting all 24 routines, the Sooners' squad posted a season high team score of 196.750 against the Tigers, led by Redmond-Sturms Big 12-leading eighth all-around title. The Los Angeles, Calif., native capped off Senior Night with 9.95s in event wins on vault and floor, also adding the bars title (9.875) to push her season total to 33. Her all-around score of 39.625 was just 0.075 off of the program record and her second highest this season. The senior All-American posted a 39.65 in OU's victory at TWU on Jan. 19.
Tying career-highs on vault (9.85) and floor (9.875), Flanery helped guide the Sooners to their 29th regular-season win in their last 30 outings. The Plattsburg, Mo., sophomore tied for fourth on vault and third on floor against an Auburn squad that ranked 10th (vault) and 11th (floor) in the nation on the respective events.
It was the fifth time this season that Redmond-Sturms had been awarded Gymnast of the Week honors and the sixth time in her OU career that she garnered a weekly award. The conference nomination was the first for Flanery.
With Tuesday's announcement, an OU gymnast has garnered conference Gymnast of the Week honors six out of a possible nine occasions. It was also the fifth time this season that the event specialist has been an Oklahoma athlete. No other conference school has had more than three nominees in either category.
It marked the fourth time this season that Oklahoma has won both conference awards during the same week.
Moving to ninth in the latest GymInfo poll, the Sooners hold top-14 event rankings across the board, highlighted by a fourth-place standing on the floor exercise. The top-ranked squad in both the Big 12 Conference and South Central Regional, OU is led by Redmond-Sturms' third-place standing in the NCAA all-around category. Oklahoma gymnasts also hold seven spots in the latest top-25 NCAA event rankings.
OU hits the road for two consecutive weeks before returning home for back-to-back postseason competitions. The Sooners square off with South Central Region-rival Arkansas in Fayetteville, Ark., at 2 p.m. on March 15, before traveling to Minneapolis, Minn., for a matchup with the Golden Gophers of Minnesota on March 22.
The Sooners host both the Big 12 Championship (March 29) and NCAA South Central Regional (April 12) at the Lloyd Noble Center. For tickets, please call (405) 325-2424 or toll-free at (800) 456-GoOU or stop by the OU Athletics Ticket Office, located on the plaza level of the Asp Avenue Parking Facility, immediately West of the Gaylord Family-Oklahoma Memorial Stadium. Tickets can also be purchased on the day of the event at the Lloyd Noble Center box office.
Visit www.SoonerSports.com for more information on the OU gymnastics squad as the team continues its march towards the NCAA Championships.