No. 1 Oklahoma vs. No. 12 Arizona State, No. 10 Arkansas & No. 15 Denver
March 9 | 6:45 p.m. CT | Norman, Okla. | Lloyd Noble Center
|MATCHUP AT A GLANCE|
|2018 Ranking||No. 1||No. 12||No. 10||No. 15|
|2018 Team High||198.375||196.800||197.275||197.300|
NOTES AND NUMBERS FOR MEET NINE
The No. 1 Oklahoma women’s gymnastics team wraps up its home slate with a quad meet against No. 10 Arkansas, No. 12 Arizona State and No. 15 Denver Friday at 6:45 p.m. The Sooners will celebrate their 2018 senior class, which includes Natalie Brown, Stefani Catour, Samantha Craus and AJ Jackson. Since their arrival in Norman, the Sooners have secured two NCAA Championships (2016, 2017) and a third-place finish (2015). The quartet has won three straight Big 12 titles and three NCAA regional titles. Brown, Catour & Jackson have combined for eight All-America honors and five Big 12 event titles in their careers.
For the eighth straight week, the Oklahoma women’s gymnastics team is the No. 1 team in the nation. This is the second week that rankings have been determined by regional qualifying scores (RQS). RQS is based on a team's six best regular season scores, three of which must be away. The overall high score is eliminated, and the five remaining scores are averaged. RQS scores are used to determine seeding for NCAA regional competition at six campus sites on April 7. OU’s RQS of 197.980 is the best mark in the nation. Additionally, the Sooners are in the top five on all four events, posting regional qualifying scores of 49.510 (vault; No. 1), 49.500 (bars; No. 2), 49.550 (beam; No. 1) and 49.455 (floor; No. 4). OU also possesses the highest average on vault and bars.
The Sooners are currently 6-0 in the state of Oklahoma this season, winning four meets at home and the Perfect 10 Challenge in Oklahoma City.
HOME SWEET LLOYD NOBLE
On Friday, the Sooners will look to build upon their 92-4 all-time home record under 12th-year head coach K.J. Kindler. OU has claimed 30 straight victories in Norman dating back to 2014.
Of the top scores so far this season, OU has five that rank in the top 10. OU holds the No. 1 team score in the nation with a 198.375 against Michigan (March 3). The Sooners also have the third-best total with a 198.150 against North Carolina (Feb. 11), the fifth best with a 198.125 at Florida (Jan. 26) and the and the eighth and ninth best totals with a 198.050 scored at UCLA (Feb. 4) and a 198.025 scored at home against West Virginia (Feb. 23).
TO 198 AND BEYOND
From Jan. 26-Feb. 11, Oklahoma posted three straight scores of 198 or higher. This season, OU has put up five scores of at least 198, a program record for the regular season. The Sooners are one of just two teams to put up more than one mark of 198 or higher this season and only four schools have posted a 198 in 2018 (Florida, LSU, UCLA). Oklahoma put up scores of 198.125, 198.050 and 198.150, marking the first time in program history that the Sooners have scored a 198 or better in three consecutive meets. In its last nine meets (dating back to the 2017 Super Six), Oklahoma has reached the 198 threshold six times.
With 192 routines under their belts, the Sooners have put up 93 scores of 9.9 or better. That means that 48 percent of Oklahoma’s routines fall in the “excellent” category. The Sooners are averaging 11.63 scores of 9.9 or higher per meet. OU’s 93 scores of 9.9 is second in the nation, behind LSU’s 96. However, LSU has competed in two more meets than OU, putting up an extra 48 routines. Florida (81), UCLA (79) and Utah (66) are within striking distance of OU but have done so in 216 routines.
Below is a breakdown of the Sooners’ individual scores on each event this season, including totals of at least 9.85, 9.9 and 9.95.
VAULT At least 9.85 (38) | 9.9 (21) | 9.95 (9)
BARS At least 9.85 (41) | 9.9 (28) | 9.95 (10)
BEAM At least 9.85 (37) | 9.9 (26) | 9.95 (11)
FLOOR At least 9.85 (33) | 9.9 (20) | 9.95 (7)
Six Sooners hold 12 individual top-25 rankings, which are also determined by RQS this week. Sophomore Maggie Nichols is ranked first in the all-around with a 39.755 RQS, a mark that is better than the highest score of all but two gymnasts. Nichols is tied for first on bars (9.945) and beam (9.960), tied for second on vault (9.940) and second on floor (9.945). Junior Brenna Dowell is tied with Nichols for second on vault (9.940) and tied for 15th on bars (9.900). Junior Nicole Lehrmann is seventh on beam (9.925). Freshman Anastasia Webb and sophomore Bre Showers are tied for 13th on beam (9.900). Webb is also tied for 24th in the all-around with an RQS of 39.330. Senior AJ Jackson is tied for 15th on vault with an RQS of 9.885.
A GLANCE AT ARIZONA STATE
Rankings (as of March 5)
Overall: 12th (196.510 RQS)
Vault: 20th (49.035)
Bars: 15th (49.145)
Beam: 14th (49.135)
Floor: 18th (49.175)
All-Around: Cairo Leonard-Baker (10th, 39.455)
Vault: Cairo Leonard-Baker (65th, 9.835)
Bars: Cairo Leonard-Baker (12th, 9.905)
Beam: Ashley Szafranski (T-80th, 9.835)
Floor: Cairo Leonard-Baker (T-14th, 9.905)
A GLANCE AT ARKANSAS
Rankings (as of March 5)
Overall: 10th (196.660 RQS)
Vault: 21st (49.015)
Bars: 7th (49.245)
Beam: 9th (49.250)
Floor: 14th (49.235)
All-Around: Jessica Yamzon (32nd, 39.235)
Vault: Braie Speed (T-25th, 9.875)
Bars: Amanda Wellick (T-25th, 9.880)
Beam: Sophia Carter (T-13th, 9.900)
Floor: Sarah Shaffer (T-18th, 9.900)
A GLANCE AT DENVER
Rankings (as of March 5)
Overall: 15th (196.330 RQS)
Vault: 9th (49.175)
Bars: 29th (48.995)
Beam: 19th (49.105)
Floor: 16th (49.230
All-Around: Maddie Karr (T-7th, 39.535)
Vault: Maddie Karr (14th, 9.890)
Bars: Maddie Karr (T-17th, 9.895)
Beam: Kaitlyn Schou (T-17th, 9.895)
Floor: Maddie Karr (T-14th, 9.905)
OU vs. Arizona State: Arizona State leads 21-11-1; Last meeting: OU won 197.475-193.325 (2016)
OU vs. Arkansas: OU leads 14-2; Last meeting: OU won 197.575-195.500 (2016 NCAA Regional)
OU vs. Denver: OU leads 36-8; Last meeting: OU won 197.7250-196.4750 (2017 NCAA Semifinal I)
The east entrances of Lloyd Noble Center will be open for general public and student access beginning at 5:15 p.m., 90 minutes prior to the start of the meet. ADA entrance will be at the lower south level.
Fans are encouraged to #ArriveSooner to avoid delays into the gates with new enhanced screenings. Fans are encouraged to not bring bags to help expedite screening. For more gameday tips at Lloyd Noble Center, visit the LNC's information page.
Fans with reserved season tickets will have seats in sections LE3 or LE4, and the seat number info will be printed on the tickets. All reserved season ticket holders will also receive a Lloyd Noble Center concessions meal voucher to use during one home meet.
Single-meet tickets are available for purchase online through SoonerSports.com or over the phone at (405) 325-2424 or toll-free at 800-456-GoOU.
ON THE AIR
Friday’s meet will air through Sooner Sports TV on FOX Sports Oklahoma and will stream on FOX Sports Go. Former OU greats Bart Conner and Kelly Garrison-Funderburk will call the action, and Megan McDonald will be on the sidelines.
- OU swept the Big 12 Weekly awards with Maggie Nichols (Gymnast), Stefani Catour (Event Specialist) and Anastasia Webb (Newcomer) all receiving honors from the conference. It was the third time this season that the Sooners have swept the awards.
- Four current Sooners have recorded at least one 10.0 in their careers, including juniors Nicole Lehrmann (UB, 2017) and Brenna Dowell (UB, 2017; VT 2018), sophomore Maggie Nichols (VT,UB, BB, FX), and freshman Anastasia Webb (BB, 2018).
- Oklahoma returns six previous NCAA All-Americans who own 16 total accolades: Natalie Brown (BB), Stefani Catour (UB, BB), Brenna Dowell (UB, FX), AJ Jackson (VT, UB, FX), Nicole Lehrmann (UB, BB), Maggie Nichols (VT, UB, FX).
- OU was ranked No. 1 in the NACGC/W Preseason Coaches’ Poll for the third straight season, receiving 33 of 50 first-place votes. It marked the eighth straight year the Sooners had been ranked in the top five nationally to begin the season.
• Super Hero Senior Night (Wear a super hero costume, best dressed wins a prize pack)
• Student Giveaways (admission is free): OU Gymnastics "Slay the Day" t-shirts
• Weather Day (National Weather Service in attendance to teach about weather preparation and safety)
• A petting zoo, photo booth, balloon artist and face painter in the Kids Zone from 6:15-8:15 p.m.
• Pre-meet performances from Tumbling with Syd and Tumble Zone
• National anthem sung by Bella Brown
The Sooners will have their first double weekend of the season, traveling to Alabama and TWU. OU will face off against Alabama Friday, March 16, at 6:30 p.m. in Tuscaloosa, before hitting the road to Denton, Texas to take on TWU Sunday, March 18, at 2 p.m. The meet against Alabama will air on the SEC Network+.