Oklahoma Heads West for No. 17 Arizona
January 23, 2014
 No. 1 Oklahoma at No. 17 Arizona  |  Saturday, Jan. 23  |  5 p.m. CT
 Be There  McKale Memorial Center (Tucson, Ariz.)
 Arizona Athletics Ticket Office
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 Pre-Meet Info  Game Notes (PDF)


With the experience of two home meets under its belt, the Oklahoma women’s gymnastics team will take on a new challenge in its first road contest of the season this weekend. The No. 1 Sooners will take their 2-0 record on the road at No. 17 Arizona on Saturday, Jan. 25 in Tucson, Ariz. Head coach K.J. Kindler’s group will gain valuable exposure to a road environment this weekend as the team opens a stretch that will see the Sooners on the road or in neutral gyms four times over five weeks.

OU continued to lead the country in this week’s national rankings, posting a team average of 197.188 to take the No. 1 spot for the second consecutive week. Although Oklahoma has achieved regular-season No. 1 rankings multiple times since 2010, this week marks the first time that the program has been No. 1 in back-to-back weeks of competition. The Sooners have been setting plenty of No. 1 milestones under Kindler--in 2010, Oklahoma gymnastics became the first women’s sport at OU to be ranked No. 1 in the country during the regular season. OU has also been ranked in the top 5 nationally for each of the past 26 regular season rankings.

Oklahoma’s 2-0 start to the 2014 season has already been accompanied by plenty of recognition at the conference level. The Sooners have earned five of six Big 12 weekly honors so far this season, led by junior Erica Brewer’s two Gymnast of the Week awards. Lara Albright joined Rebecca Clark this week as the two Sooner gymnasts to be named Event Specialist of the Week, while freshman Chayse Capps pulled down Newcomer of the Week accolades following her first career collegiate competition vs. Georgia.

Oklahoma’s two strong outings this season have been bolstered by a pair of outstanding team performances on vault. The Sooners posted a 49.475 to open the season vs. No. 8 Georgia before adding a 49.400 on the event against Iowa State last weekend. The team is currently ranked No. 2 in the nation on vault, marking OU’s top ranking on any individual event. Oklahoma has seen major contributions from every class on the event: senior Madison Mooring has served in the lead-off position, junior Erica Brewer has appeared in the No. 2 slot, Chayse Capps has taken over at the No. 5 spot as a true freshman and sophomores Maile’ana Kanewa, Keeley Kmieciak and Haley Scaman have contributed big scores throughout the lineup.

Both head coach K.J. Kindler and Rebecca Clark described OU’s 196.675-193.050 win over Iowa State as a “learning experience” for an Oklahoma roster peppered with new faces this season. After a dominant win over Georgia in week one, the Sooners were forced to bounce back from several more difficult situations against ISU. Kindler stressed the importance that the team continued to learn about itself in these early weeks of the season, making OU’s road matchup at Arizona this weekend another crucial step in the process for the 2014 team.

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