March 29, 2017
DENVER – The No. 9-ranked University of Denver women’s gymnastics team will compete at NCAA Regionals on Saturday, traveling to Fayetteville, Ark. The meet is slated to start at 3 p.m. MT.
This is Denver’s 19th consecutive appearance at NCAA Regionals. Denver enters Saturday’s meet as the regions No. 2 seed and the No. 9 seed overall. Joining the Pioneers will be No. 4 Utah, No. 16 California, No. 21 Auburn, host Arkansas and Central Michigan.
MEET #14: No. 9 Denver (18-6, 2-3 Big 12) at Fayetteville Regional
Date and Time: Saturday, April 1, at 3 p.m. MT
Location: Barnhill Arena/8,500 (Fayetteville, Ark.)
Tickets: Buy Tickets
Live Stream: Arkansas live stream
Live Stats: Arkansas live stats
Meet Info: DU meet notes
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DU will enter NCAA Regionals ranked inside the top 10 nationally for the first time in program history. This is only the second time that Denver has held the No. 2 seed at Regionals.
Ordered by seeding and with national rankings in parentheses, the Fayetteville Regional will feature:
(4) Utah – 197.550 RQS
(9) Denver – 197.040 RQS
(16) California – 196.515 RQS
(21) Auburn – 196.265 RQS
(27) Arkansas – 195.775 RQS
(28) Central Michigan – 195.765 RQS
Denver will begin the meet on vault in the first rotation and will finish on floor in the final rotation.
Two Pioneers earned regular season All-American honors from the coaches’ association after finishing ranked inside the top 16 on individual events. Freshman Maddie Karr (Stillwater, Minn.) and senior Julia Ross (Henderson, Nev.) both earned second team recognition in the all-around. Karr added a first team nod on vault while Ross was named second team on beam.
RECORD-BREAKING REGULAR SEASON
Numerous program records have fallen during the Pioneers’ 2017 season, including the team’s highest-ever RQS (197.040). Denver held a top-10 national ranking for nine weeks during the regular season, shattering the previous record of three weeks in 2003.
Four of the top 10 scores in program history were set this season, including the sixth-highest score (197.150) achieved three separate times. DU also set the ninth-best mark (197.125).
Denver set a new school record for team bars score (49.450) on the road on March 10 while also tying the second-highest (49.400) and seventh-highest (49.325) on the event. Additionally, the team set the third-highest (49.400) and tied the seventh-highest (49.300) beam scores, each on multiple occasions.
WHAT TO WATCH FOR
Vault: Karr, now a first team All-American on vault, leads DU on the event with a perfect 10.0 and seven event titles this season. At the 2017 Big 12 Championships, Ross had the team’s next-best mark, followed closely by fellow senior Rachel Fielitz (Walden. N.Y.) and sophomore Kaitlyn Schou (Orlando, Fla.), each with scores of 9.800 or higher.
Bars: Ross, Karr and sophomore Diana Chesnok (Charlotte, N.C.) had DU’s top scores in their last meet. Across the season, Ross, Chesnok and freshman Sam Ogden (Allen, Texas) have been DU’s top scorers with senior Leah Lomonte (Katy, Texas) and sophomore Claire Kern (Charlotte, N.C.) competing in every meet.
Beam: Ross earned second team All-American status on beam this season and has led the team in titles won and RQS. At the Big 12 Championship, Ross finished third overall with Karr and Schou close behind in scoring.
Floor: Junior Nikole Addison (Fort Myers, Fla.) again led the Pioneers on floor in their last meet and has the team’s highest RQS and most titles won on the event. Karr had DU’s second-highest floor score at the Big 12 Championship, followed by Schou and junior Claire Hammen (Loveland, Colo.), who made her season debut in her return from injury.
In 2016, Denver competed at the Minneapolis Regional, finishing fourth with a 195.700. Then-senior Nina McGee finished second in the all-around and won the floor title to advance to the NCAA National Championships where she would win DU Gymnastics’ first-ever individual national title, doing so on floor.
DU has qualified to NCAA Regionals in each of the last 19 seasons, advancing to the NCAA National Championships as a team in 2001, 2007 and 2008. In every season since 2000, at least one Pioneer gymnast has qualified to NCAA Nationals.
This will be the first time DU has competed in Fayetteville, Ark., for Regionals.
This will be the second meeting this season between Denver and Utah, first doing so in a quad meet in Salt Lake City where Utah finished first and DU finished second. In total, Denver and Utah have met in six times NCAA Regionals, last in 2013 in Tuscaloosa, Ala.
Denver and California last met in 2015 in a regular-season quad meet at Cal where the Bears finished first and the Pioneers finished second. This will be the teams’ first meeting at NCAA Regionals, and their last neutral-site meeting was in 2007 at UCLA where DU topped California.
DU’s last meeting against Auburn was at NCAA Regionals in Salt Lake City in 2010. Denver beat Auburn in that meeting. The teams also competed against each other at the 2008 NCAA Regionals in University Park, Pa., where DU also topped Auburn.
Denver last traveled to Arkansas in 2013 where the Razorbacks won in a regular-season competition. DU and Arkansas also met at the 2011 NCAA Regionals in Denver where Arkansas came out ahead of DU.
The last time that DU and Central Michigan met was in a regular-season meet in Denver in 2010 that DU won. While the teams have never met at NCAA Regionals previously, they last met at a neutral site in 1994 in Colorado Springs where CMU topped DU.
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