Utah State Gymnastics Signs Trio
Dec. 19, 2011
LOGAN, Utah - Utah State gymnastics head coach Jeff Richards has announced the signings of three gymnasts who intend to compete as Aggies in the 2012-13 school year.
McKenzey Martinez from Kimberly, Idaho, Michelle Yasukochi from Carlsbad, Calif., and Hayley Sanzotti from Wheaton, Ill. have all signed letters of intent with USU and will be in Logan in the fall of 2012.
"We are excited about the signing of our 2012 class, our goal was to recruit vaulters and beam workers," Richards said. "This is the first time we will be this strong on vault. Beam has been a weak area in the past for us but the addition of these three with our 2011 class will give us more strength and depth for the future."
Martinez competes for Magic Valley Gymnastics under Jen Clinton in Twin Falls, Idaho. She is a five-time Junior Olympic National Qualifier. In the 2011 Junior Olympics, she placed 10th on the uneven bars and 14th in all-around competition. She earned her trip to Nationals after winning the all-around title at the 2011 Idaho State Meet, to advance to 2011 Regional Meet, where she placed second in all-around. She attends Kimberly High School and is the daughter of Robert and Toni Martinez.
Yasukochi competes for Ellie Gerber and Quin Shannon at Seawind Gymnastics in Carlsbad, Calif. In 2011, she was named Regional Qualifier after competing at the California State Meet. At the Classic Rock Invite, she took home the title in the balance beam competition. At the 2011 Monarchs Malibu Coast Challenge she took second-place on both vault and floor exercises. The daughter of Kerry and Sally Yasukochi, she is a senior at Carlsbad High School.
Sanzotti is a gymnast at the Illinois Gymnastics Institute under Todd Gardiner and Amy Blackburn. At the 2011 Level 10 Regional Competition, she placed in all four events as well as in all-around competition. She took fourth on vault, fifth on beam, sixth on bars, eighth on floor exercise and fifth in the all-around. She was a 2011 Junior Olympic National Qualifier where she placed 37th in the all-around competition. The daughter of Bryan and Pamela Sanzotti, she attends Wheaton North High School.
Adding these three gymnasts to the current Aggie roster will help Richards and the team reach their goals of bettering their vault and beam scores. All three of the girls have won beam titles and have 10.0 start values on the vault.
"These three added to our current freshmen this season with Kaitlyn Betts (Canton, Mich.) and Sarah Landes (Edmond, Okla.) give us five 10.0 vaulters. All have been Regional Qualifiers. All three are academically very sound," Richards said. "These three will bring high-level skills and experience as well as being well rounded individuals."
The Aggies will open the season with two meets on the road, starting Jan. 13 at Utah and Texas Woman's University. The team will return home to the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum on Friday, Jan. 27 where they will host a tri-meet with Southern Utah and Boise State.
For USU gymnastics ticket information, contact the USU Ticket Office at the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum, by phone by calling 1-888-USTATE-1 or (435) 797-0305, or online 24 hours a day at www.UtahStateAggies.com and clicking on the "buy/renew tickets" under the "tickets" drop down menu.
Fans can follow the Aggie gymnastics program at twitter.com/USUGymnastics or on Facebook at UtahStategymnastics Aggies. Aggie fans can also follow the Utah State athletic program at twitter.com/USUAthletics or on Facebook at Utah State University Athletics.
NAME HOMETOWN (HIGH SCHOOL/CLUB) McKenzey Martinez Kimberly, Idaho (Kimberly High School / Magic Valley Gymnastics) Hayley Sanzotti Wheaton, Ill. (Wheaton North High School / Illinois Gymnastics Institute) Michelle Yasukochi Carlsbad, Calif. (Carlsbad High School / Seawind Gymnastics)