April 8, 1999
THREE INDIVIDUALS TO REPRESENT CAL: For only the third time since the introduction of the NCAA Women's Gymnastics Championships in 1983, and the first since 1993, California will not advance as a team to regional competition. However, three Golden Bear all-arounders will compete in this week's NCAA Region I Gymnastics Championships as individuals. The Regional, which takes place Saturday, April 10 beginning at 7:00 p.m., is being hosted by Oregon State University and features six teams as well as six at-large all-arounders. Cal freshman Lindsay Baker, sophomore Helne Kenny and junior Leila Khoury were selected to comprise one-half of the at-large all-arounder contingent when individual berths were announced March 29.
THE FORMAT: One of six regional sites, the field at Corvallis, Ore., features No. 3 Utah, No. 12 Oregon State, No. 15 UCLA, No. 18 Boise State, Washington and Sacramento State. In addition to Cal's three gymnasts, Annie Snellgrove of San Jose State, Megan Berry of Cal State Fullerton and Alison Giortetti of UC Santa Barbara will also compete as at-large all-arounders. Each all-arounder will be paired with one of the six teams with that individual performing after their assigned team has completed all of its routines on each event.
TEAM MEET ROTATION ORDER: The six teams will compete in the following rotation:
VAULT BYE BARS BEAM BYE FLOOR Rotation I Sac. St. UCLA OSU Wash. BSU Utah Rotation II Utah Sac. St. UCLA OSU Wash. BSU Rotation III BSU Utah Sac. St. UCLA OSU Wash. Rotation IV Wash. BSU Utah Sac. St. UCLA OSU Rotation V OSU Wash. BSU Utah Sac. St. UCLA Rotation VI UCLA OSU Wash. BSU Utah Sac. St.
Each individual all-arounder will compete with the following teams: Leila Khoury (Cal) - Utah; Helne Kenny (Cal) - Boise State; Lindsay Baker (Cal) - Washington; Annie Snellgrove (SJSU) - Oregon State; Megan Berry (CSUF) - UCLA; Alison Giorgetti (UCSB) - Sacramento State.
MOVING ON: The top two teams and the all-around champion from each regional will receive automatic berths to the 1999 NCAA Women's Gymnastic Championships in Salt Lake City, Utah, April 22-24. Twelve all-around competitors (not on advancing teams) will also receive berths based on rank order of finish (highest score) from all regional championships. Note: If the all-around winner in a region is on an advancing team, that position reverts to an at-large berth. In addition, the event winners at each regional championship who score at least a 9.800 may advance to the national championships (in that event only) if they are not part of a qualifying team or the all-around qualifier.
KHOURY CONTINUES TO SHINE: The Bears most valuable gymnast as both a freshman and sophomore, junior Leila Khoury was once again the Bears most consistent performer in 1999. Winner of three all-around competitions this season, Khoury led the Bears with seven total wins, including three wins each versus UCSB/UC Davis and at Sacramento State. Khoury also posted Cal's top score on both vault (9.825) and floor (9.900) this season and additionally led the Bears in season average on those events and in all-around.
SUDDEN IMPACT: With all of the Bears injuries this season, Cal's trio of freshmen were counted on to step up more that anticipated heading into the season. And no newcomer proved to be more valuable that Lindsay Baker. An all-around competitor in 11 of the Bears 12 meets this season, Baker had a coming out party in the final competition of the season at Stanford, where she posted a team season-high all-around total of 39.025, the second-best all-around score ever recorded by a Cal gymnast. She also registered a team season-high score of 9.825 on vault to place third versus the Cardinal. In all, Baker notched 13 Top 3 finishes this season.
BY LEAPS AND BOUNDS: One of the Bears most improved gymnasts in 1999, Helne Kenny stepped up to compete all-around in all but two meets this season after not making a single all-around appearance as a freshman. Clearly Cal's top competitor on uneven parallel bars, Kenny led the team in both average (9.667) and high-score (9.875). She posted her top all-around score when it counted with a career-best 38.525 at the Pac-10 Championships and was the Bears second-best all-arounder by average (38.750). A solid performer on bars and beam as a freshman, Kenny made perhaps her biggest improvement on floor, recording a career-best 9.775 at both Sacramento State and Stanford after entering the season with a previous personal-best of 9.000 in that event.