Friday, April 10, 2009

Putting a wrap on the team semifinals...

Here are a few more golden nuggets of information from last night's team semifinals of the 2009 USA Gymnastics Collegiate National Championships:

-Dr. Ann Stuart, the Chancellor and President of TWU, made the trip to Connecticut to cheer on the Pioneers! Dr. Stuart represented the Pioneers well and sat with a rowdy group of TWU gym parents to watch last nights' meet. Word is that she even put a TWU PIONEERS tatoo on her face (just like the gymnasts). One of the parents got a picture of that, so I'll have to get it and put it up here. Seriously, though, thanks to Dr. Stuart for coming all the way out here to New Haven. I know the TWU gymnasts and coaches definitely appreciate the support of the Pioneers' number one fan!

-The Pioneers have now advanced to the team finals of this championship for the last 16 years in a row. That's called rising to the challenge folks.

-Kristie Costa and Rashonda Cannie will take part on bars in Saturday's Individual Event Finals. Should Costa or Cannie win the event, it will be the fifth year in a row that TWU has the national champion bar swinger. Brisa Fuentes won the event in 2005, Bethany Rehm grabbed the title in 2006, and Courtney Arno-Templet won the crown in 2007 and 2008.

-Tonya Pipkorn, Brittany Parker, and Kristie Costa will compete on beam in the Individual Event Finals. TWU has also won three in a row beam titles - Courtney Arno in 2006, Rachel Zimmerman in 2007, and Arno-Templet again in 2008.

Also, here's a few more quotes from my post-meet interview with Coach Kudlac that did not make it into my meet story:

"I thought we handled the new format (Capital Cup - warmup/compete) of this meet very well. That's a credit to our preparation. We did a mock meet last week where we simulated every step of this competition."

"The main goal tonight was just to advance. Finishing first is just a bonus. But honestly, nobody remembers who wins the team semifinals. Tomorrow is the big one."

"I told the girls in our team meeting that they needed to forget about this meet before they got back to the hotel. I want their focus to be 100% on Friday night's team finals."

"It's always good to have several athletes qualify for individual event finals. That speaks well about the program. We have a history of success in the individuals and I'd like to see that continue on Saturday."


Well that's all I got about the semifinals. The team finals start at 7 EST. Check back for more updates as the day goes along.

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