OU Gymnasts Set to Challenge No. 2 Gators
January 29, 2014
 No. 1 Oklahoma at No. 2 Florida  |  Friday, Jan. 31  |  6 p.m. CT
 Be There  Stephen C. O'Connell Center 
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 Pre-Meet Info  Game Notes (PDF)


One of the most compelling meets in collegiate gymnastics this weekend will take place in Gainesville, Fla., when the top two finishing teams from the 2013 NCAA Championships will come head-to-head at the Stephen C. O’Connell Center. The defending national champion Gators will play host to the NCAA runner-up Sooners--only this time, the rankings will be reversed with OU entering as the nation’s No. 1 team and Florida trailing close behind at No. 2. The early-season contest is only the fourth meet of the year for both teams, but should provide valuable experience for head coach K.J. Kindler’s relatively young Sooner squad.

True freshmen McKenzie Wofford and Chayse Capps each earned weekly awards from the Big 12 following their performances against Arizona: Wofford was named Big 12 Event Specialist of the Week, while Capps took home her second Newcomer of the Week honor this season. With the two awards, Oklahoma has now won at least two of three Big 12 weekly honors every week this season. OU swept the award listing the first week of the year and captured two honors in week two and week three. Erica Brewer and Capps each hold two conference awards to their names, while Lara Albright, Rebecca Clark and Wofford have each taken turns earning Event Specialist accolades.

In the preseason, Kindler predicted her freshman class would play a huge role in the Sooners’ 2014 season, and her prediction has held true. OU’s freshman contributors have played key roles in each of the squad’s wins this season, including several fearless performances in their first road competition last weekend. Oklahoma freshmen Capps, Kara Lovan and Wofford accounted for seven of 24 lineup spots last weekend and notched six top-five overall finishes in their appearances.

Oklahoma could have posted a nerve-wrought performance in its first road meet of the season at Arizona, but the Sooners were more than composed. OU earned a 197.575 against the Wildcats, the team’s second-highest score this season and the nation’s highest road score of 2014. The meet served as valuable experience for the Sooners, who have entered into a portion of their 2014 schedule that will see the squad away or at neutral sites in three of their next four meets.

OU’s challenging slate has set Sooner fans up to see plenty of exciting gymnastics in the coming weeks: the No. 1 team in the nation is set to face the country’s No. 2 and No. 3-ranked squads in the next two weeks of competition. OU will take on second-ranked Florida this weekend in Gainesville before returning to Norman to face No. 3 LSU at the Lloyd Noble Center on Feb. 9. The challenges won’t stop there for the Sooners, who will also take on the Tigers again at the Metroplex Challenge before facing No. 4 Michigan and No. 7 Alabama at the Perfect 10 Challenge in Oklahoma City on Feb. 21.

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