Sunday, December 28, 2014
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

Aggie gymnastics squad seeks fourth conference title

By
From page B1 | March 21, 2013 |

UCD junior Anna Shumaker is one of three Aggies to have won MPSF Gymnast of the Week awards in 2013. The locals head to Seattle for the conference championships on Saturday. Wayne Tilcock/Enterprise photo

While some gymnasts have gotten more of the press, it has been an entire UC Davis squad that has contributed to a record-shattering 2013 campaign.

For their team-wide effort this season, the Aggies are perceived as the favorites to win their fourth consecutive Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Championship on Saturday at Seattle Pacific’s Royal Brougham Pavilion.

But even though UCD head coach John Lavallee has faith in the abilities of his squad — which ended the dual meet season at 11-11 — he is hesitant to declare that distinction.

“It’s not really on our radar,” Lavallee said. “There’s a lot of things tied to the meet; we have (NCAA) regional qualification implications, both as a team and individuals.

“But we’re trying to block all that stuff out and just concentrate on finishing with the best gymnastics we can do. We’ll focus on what we’ve been doing well to be successful up to this point.”

It’s easy to see why the Aggies are favored when looking back on their achievements in a campaign that began with the highest season-opening score in school history.

UCD later exceeded the 195-point barrier for the program’s first time, scoring 195.475 at a March 1 meet with San Jose State. Also noteworthy that day was senior Katie Yamamura breaking her own school all-around record with a winning 39.325.

The following week, the Aggies’ strong performance in the first three events had them temporarily holding a lead over Boise State — a squad ranked 23rd in the country.

UCD’s momentum continued through the last meet of the season on Friday, where it once again reached new heights, topping the mark it has set just two weeks prior with a score of 195.625 against rival Sacramento State.

“This season has put UCD gymnastics on a new level,” Lavallee said, “and it has been incredibly exciting to watch.”

As the Aggies head to Seattle for Saturday’s conference meet, thoughts of climbing even higher in the record books aren’t far behind.

“We feel that if we can go out there and hit five out of six routines on each mat, we will be fine,” Lavallee said. “If by chance we do better than that, maybe we can reach another school record.”

This is one of the last opportunities to rise to the occasion for Yamamura, who was selected as the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Gymnast of the Week twice this season — and has earned 12 weekly awards in her career.

Fellow senior Michelle Ho also received two conference nods in 2013, while junior Anna Shumaker — who has broken the 39-point all-around barrier in the past two weeks of competition — earned one MPSF award.

According to Lavallee, the entire cast of Aggies has been putting in extra hours on the mat in preparation for the upcoming conference finals. He added that this continued tenacity is what has set the 2013 UCD edition apart:

“This team has done a great job of getting themselves ready physically. We’re stronger, faster and more powerful than in the past. That athleticism has allowed us to perform better.”

The Aggies hope a combination of work ethic and natural talent is enough to beat Air Force, Alaska-Anchorage and Seattle Pacific — their primary opposition in the race for conference glory.

Air Force, after scoring a 194.700 in a home dual with Denver on March 11, is probably the biggest obstacle in UCD’s path to a four-peat. Alaska-Anchorage was the last team other than the Aggies to win an MPSF title — doing it in 2009 — and Seattle Pacific’s home-turf advantage will make it tough to get past.

“Anything can happen,” Lavallee said. “The only thing we can control is the performance. We’re not so much concerned about what others are going to do.”

— Reach Brett Johnson at bjohnson@davisenterprise.net or 530-747-8052. Follow him on Twitter at @ReporterBrett

Comments

comments

  • Recent Posts

  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this newspaper and receive notifications of new articles by email.

  • .

    News

     
    Yolo makes hydrogen connection

    By Elizabeth Case | From Page: A1 | Gallery

     
    N. Korea uses racial slur against Obama over hack

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

     
    AirAsia plane with 162 aboard missing in Indonesia

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

     
    Sacramento man convicted for 2011 bar shooting

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A2

    Drugs, stolen car lead to women’s arrests

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A2

     
    NYC officer mourned at funeral as tensions linger

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

    Covell Gardens hosts New Year’s Eve dance

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

     
    UC Davis debate team wins national championship

    By Kathy Keatley Garvey | From Page: A3 | Gallery

    Portuguese breakfast set for Jan. 25

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

     
    Pedal around Davis on weekly bike ride

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    Nominate teens for Golden Heart awards

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

     
    USA Weekend calls it quits

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    Supplies collected for victims of abuse

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

     
    Sweet success: Cancer Center helps young patient celebrate end of treatment

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3 | Gallery

    Reserve tickets soon for Chamber’s Installation Gala

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

     
    Holiday hours continue at The Enterprise

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    At the Pond: It all started with kayaking on Putah Creek

    By Jean Jackman | From Page: A5 | Gallery

     
    Find the first cabbage white butterfly, and win a pitcher

    By Kathy Keatley Garvey | From Page: A6 | Gallery

    Does pre-eclampsia raise autism risk?

    By Phyllis Brown | From Page: A6

     
    Long will talk about value of hedgerows for adjacent farms

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A6 | Gallery

     
    It’s a wonderful life — and a wonderful state

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A8 | Gallery

    College sees benefits in loan guarantees

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

     
    Tickets for New Year’s Eve party going fast

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A12

    .

    Forum

    It was a busy, black-eye year for disease control

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

     
    This cat is on life No. 7

    By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B4

     
    Say thanks to the caregivers

    By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B5

     
    Bombing is not the answer

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A10

    Just Us in Davis: Despair and hope for the new year

    By Jonathan London | From Page: A10

     
    Commission’s list needs vetting

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

    Rifkin’s statement is offensive

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

     
    Cuba policy changes highlight a momentous opportunity

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A11 | Gallery

    Writer’s arguments fall flat

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A11

     
    .

    Sports

    Sacramento survives Knicks in OT

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

     
    Kings cruise past Sharks

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

    Lady Blue Devils top Tigers to reach Ram Jam title game

    By Spencer Ault | From Page: B1 | Gallery

     
    DHS boys get good film in tournament loss

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

    Sports briefs: Republic FC to host camp series

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B2

     
    College bowl roundup: Sun Bowl goes to the Sun Devils

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B10 | Gallery

    .

    Features

    .

    Arts

    .

    Business

    Rob White: Davis tech community is growing

    By Rob White | From Page: A9

     
    Yolo County real estate sales

    By Zoe Juanitas | From Page: A9

    First Northern adds Peyret to agribusiness loan team

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9

     
    Kaiser’s trauma center in Vacaville earns verification

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9

    .

    Obituaries

    Ruth Allen Barr

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

     
    Charles ‘Bud’ Meyer

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

    .

    Comics

    Comics: Sunday, December 28, 2014

    By Creator | From Page: B8