No. 8 Denver Hosts Home Opener on Sunday
Pioneers welcome Air Force for Magness Arena matinee
BIG 12 SWEEP
Denver took home all three of the weekly Big 12 Conference awards after the first week of competition. Sophomore Maddie Karr (Stillwater, Minn.) was named Gymnast of the Week after winning the all-around with a 39.500 at Arizona—the highest score in the conference last week and tied for the third best in the country.
Junior Kaitlyn Schou (Orlando, Fla.) earned the first conference award of her career as Event Specialist of the Week following her second-place finish on beam with a 9.875 and her lead-off performance on floor in the season opener.
Freshman Lynnzee Brown (Kansas City, Mo.) won Newcomer of the Week with her 39.425 in the all-around, which was the second-highest score in the conference and seventh-best in the nation. She also won her first career title (floor with a 9.900).
Sunday’s meet will be the annual Colorado Club Day in which DU recognizes local gymnastics clubs. This year’s meet will also feature the only other NCAA women’s gymnastics program in the state in Air Force.
It will mark the home debut for DU’s three freshmen as well, two of whom are from Colorado. Both Emily Glynn (Longmont, Colo.) and Mia Sundstrom (Boulder, Colo.) are from Airborne Gymnastics in Longmont, Colo.
Two other gymnasts on DU’s roster are from Colorado: senior Claire Hammen (Loveland, Colo.) and junior Grace Broadhurst (Broomfield, Colo.).
WHAT TO WATCH FOR
Vault: Though only competing with only five student-athletes, Denver posted its highest event score in the season opener on vault (49.225). Karr’s 9.925 was the highest individual score in the country on the event, giving her the No. 1 ranking after Week 1. Brown was right behind her with a 9.900 while the remaining five vaulters each earned 9.800s.
Bars: DU will look to improve on its bars performance from last weekend. Karr and Brown led the team with 9.850s while Diana Chesnok (Charlotte, N.C.) and Claire Kern (Charlotte, N.C.)—two of the team’s most consistent bars workers—also hit their routines. Freshmen Glynn and Sundstrom will also be looked on to contribute to bars line ups throughout the season after making their debuts last week.
Beam: Denver finished its first meet of the season with a six-for-six performance on beam in the final rotation. Karr’s 9.900 won the event title, and Schou was second with a 9.875, just .025 off her career high. Sundstrom scored a 9.825 for third-best on the team and to tie the third-highest beam score by a DU freshman in her debut. Chesnok returned to the beam line up for the first time since her freshman season.
Floor: A balance of freshmen and returners completed DU’s floor line up in the season opener. Brown won the event title with a 9.900, and senior Nikole Addison (Fort Myers, Fla.) was close behind with a 9.875. Karr and Schou hit their routines while freshmen Glynn and Sundstrom made their collegiate debuts with solid routines.
EYE ON THE RANKINGS
Denver retained its No. 8 national ranking following the team’s 195.775 at Arizona. The Pioneers are also ranked inside the top 10 on three events: vault, beam and floor.
DU’s No. 2 national ranking on vault is a new program record for highest ranking on the event, topping the previous record of No. 3 from the 2005 season. Denver is also No. 4 in the nation on beam and No. 6 on floor.
For the first time in her career, Karr holds the No. 1 ranking on vault. She is also tied for No. 3 in the all-around, tied for No. 4 on beam and tied for No. 22 on bars.
Brown is tied for No. 2 on vault, tied for No. 6 on floor, is No. 7 in the all-around and tied for No. 22 on bars.
Schou holds her first career national ranking in a tie No. 12 on beam while Addison returns to the floor rankings with her tie for No. 15 this week.
LAST TIME OUT
Denver opened its 2018 season on the road at Arizona, winning 195.775-195.425. The Pioneers’ 49.225 is the program’s best vault score in a season opener—achieved with only five competitors on the event—while the team’s beam score (49.125) is the second best. DU’s overall team score and floor score (49.150) are each the third-highest in the first meet of the season.
Karr and Brown finished 1-2 in the all-around. Karr added wins on vault and beam while Brown captured her first collegiate title on floor. The entire vault line up finished in the top three overall. Brown and Karr each tied for second on bars. Schou was second overall on beam, and Addison tied for second on floor.
ABOUT AIR FORCE
Air Force topped UW-La Crosse in its season opener with the highest first meet score under head coach Doug Day (193.425). The Falcons took home individual wins in the all-around (Mariana Murphy) and on vault (Tyler Davis), bars (Jessica Kirkpatrick) and floor (Murphy).
AFA is tied for No. 21 in the nation on beam and tied for No. 23 on bars after one week of competition.
Denver and Air Force have met 96 times previously where DU holds a 92-4 all-time record. Air Force is Denver’s most frequent opponent, and the teams have met at least once every year since 1991.
The Pioneers and Falcons last met on the same date in 2017 (January 14) in a quad meet in Denver. DU topped AFA 196.350-189.900 in that meet.
Season tickets for the 2018 season are now available online or by calling 303-871-4625. New for 2018, season ticket holders have the opportunity to reserve their seats in Hamilton Gymnasium with chair backs for $45. Season tickets without chair backs are $35. Single-meet tickets begin at $9 and are also available online.
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