The UCLA Gymnastics team is currently in Utah preparing for their first ever Pac-12 Championships. They are the top seed and are ranked #4 in the country. (Rankings are based on a compilation of the team's scores over the season.) The team has lived up to preseason expectations when they were picked to win the Pac-12 and were voted the top team in the preseason coaches poll.
The meet will be held in two sessions, with teams seeded 5-8 competing in session one starting at 2pm MT (1pm UCLA Time) and teams seeded 1-4 (UCLA included) will be competing in session two at 7pm MT (6pm UCLA Time.)
The meet will not be televised or streamed live. Live stats will be available online and it will be televised a week later on March 29th on Fox Sports with Jim Watson and 1996 Magnificent Seven Team USA Member Amanda Borden.
More info on the seeds and UCLA's season so far after the jump.
The Pac-12 (really, Pac-8 since there are only 8 schools fielding a team) seeds are as follows:
7. Arizona State
3. Oregon State
Oregon State is the defending Pac-10/12/Conference Champion and they return Pac-10 2011 Gymnast of the Year senior Leslie Mak and reigning Coach of the Year Tanya Chapin. UCLA is looking to win it's 16th overall conference championship and has several gymnasts who have been leading the way all year, led by former Olympians Samantha Peszek and Elyse Hopfner-Hibbs. They are also looking to build on the momentum of two weeks ago, when they defeated #2 Oklahoma in the final home meet of the season 197.525 to 196.475 (complete domination) behind Peszek's career night and Tauny Frattone's perfect 10 on the vault with a Yurchenko half on, front pike (check it out! Perfect scores are difficult in gymnastics but her form was beautiful in the air, and she stuck the landing. Let us know in the comments if you need that broken down for you.)
UCLA also has four seniors in their final Pac-12 Meet - Kaelie Baer, Tauny Frattone, Aisha Gerber and Elyse Hopfner-Hibbs.
UCLA's rotation starts on the vault, then moves to uneven bars, balance beam, and ends on the floor, which is a great rotation for any school. You always want to end on the floor, where fewer mistakes tend to be made and allows you to put on a show for all those watching. Vault is also one of UCLA's strong events, while beam is probably the weakest.
With six of the eight conference teams ranked in the top 25, the competition will be fierce but we are cheering UCLA on towards Conference Title #16 and the road to 109 (#7 for gymnastics.) After the Conference Championships will be the Regional Championships April 7th which will determine who move on to the NCAA Championships in Georgia April 20-22nd.