March 13, 2008
LOGAN, Utah -
After three dual meets in a row, No. 45 Utah State (4-11, 2-5 WAC) returns to multi-team gymnastics meet when the Aggies travel to Denton, Texas for a quad-meet with 23rd-ranked Kentucky and No. 50 Centenary, hosted by 37th-ranked Texas Woman's. Action gets underway at 6 p.m. (MT) at TWU's Kitty Magee Arena.
Friday is USU's first trip to Denton, Texas since 2006, which was the last time that the Aggies tangled with either Texas Woman's or Centenary and its the first time Utah State has faced Kentucky since 2005.
Utah State is currently ranked No. 45 in the RQS rankings while Kentucky is 23rd, Texas Woman's 37th and Centenary is No. 50. A team's RQS is determined by the top three road scores and then the highest scores for a team during the year.
Junior Nicki Felley is USU's only Texan on the roster and she is the tallest active Aggie at 5-6. Felley is a native of Flower Mound, Texas, where she attended Marcus HS and competed for Texas Dreams Gymnastics club.
Gretchen Goerlitz was a USU gymnast in 2004, before transferring to Denver, where she was a three-year letterwinner. Goerlitz is in her first season as an assistant coach for the Texas Woman's program. As a freshman for the Aggies, Goerlitz qualified for the NCAA Regionals as an individual all-arounder and received the USU Whiteside's Award, an honor given in recognition of her academic excellence.
USU is 4-11 on the season after losing at BYU on Monday, 196.300-194.250. After not scoring higher than a 192.400 in their first nine outings of the year, the Aggies have topped the 194 plateau in back-to-back meets, after a season-high 194.450 in a win over San Jose State on Friday.
Individually, freshman Nicole Simoneau has a 9.840 RQS on bars, currently leading the WAC and ranking third in the region and is presently ranked tied for 32nd in the nation.
The No. 37 Pioneers of Texas Woman's are coming up a their second-highest overall score and season-high road score of 194.050 in a tri-meet at Denver last weekend, finishing behind 13th-ranked Denver's 195.950, while Pittsburgh finished third with a 191.675.
TWU has a 191.991 team total average, with a 48.305 vault average, 47.966 bars average, 47.927 average on floor and a 47.793 average on beam.
Kentucky totes a No. 23 national ranking after upsetting No. 5 Arizona and No. 26 Ohio State last week, jumping 10 spots from their previous ranking.
Kentucky's best event this season has been the floor exercise, as the Wildcats have a 48.898 season average. UK also has a 48.683 floor average, a 48.225 beam average and a 48.058 bars average for a 193.863 season-average.
The Ladies of Centenary are No. 50 and have not competed since March 2 when they lost to then-No. 8 LSU, 197.050-193.125, which was Centenary's season-best score.
On the year, the Ladies have a 190.919 season-average, led by a 48.113 on floor as well as a 47.906 on vault, 47.816 on bars and 47.097 on beam.
Utah State returns home on Friday, March 21 to host in-state foe Southern Utah at 6:30 p.m... That is USU's final meet of the season and will be "Senior Night" as the Aggies will honor their four seniors: Megan Tschida, Katie Omann, Kelly Patterson and Ana Rickard-Whitfield.
Tickets are available through the USU Ticket Office at the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum, online at www.UtahStateAggies.com and clicking on "tickets" in left column, or by calling or (435) 797-0305 or 1-888-U-STATE-1 (1-888-878-2831).
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