Arizona Gymnastics Loses to a Hot California Squad in Berkeley


While the headline may sound negative, there are positives to take away from the Arizona Gymnastics ‘GymCats’ loss to California Monday night, 196.825-196.00.

As Bill Walton often states, the Conference of Champions does not disappoint in most sports this year, gymnastics included.  The California Golden Bears gymnastics team had just defeated No. 5 UCLA when the Arizona Wildcats arrived in town.  Needless to say, the Bears’ confidence was high, their gymnasts were having fun, and their dominance continued, this time at the hands of Arizona.

So what happened?  Overall Arizona competed well, but some minor hiccups got in the way of a win.  Arizona started on the uneven bars.  The very first gymnast, sophomore Kennady Schneider, missed her landing, which leads to a quick lineup change by Coach Tabitha Yim.

That was a good move–junior Krysten Howard stepped in next and scored a 9.80.  One by one, the remaining gymnasts kept it together, scoring 9.80 and above.  The rotation was moving in a positive direction until the final performer on the uneven bars.  Unfortunately, Tucsonan Victoria Ortiz’s feet touched the floor, just for a second.

Next on the vault, all the gymnasts performed well.  The start values were less than ten, so it was even more important to make no mistakes.

Like the previous week against Utah, Cal was not giving Arizona an opening at all.  They made occasional errors, so there was not an opportunity for Arizona to climb back into even the score.

More from Zona Zealots

On the floor exercises,  Arizona is ranked #22 in the nation, but the Wildcats were again backed in the corner after the first gymnast.  Maddy Cindric, a junior from Lantana, Texas, fell as she completed her first pass. Possibly the extra 4″ mat caused her to lose her footing (the same situation happened to one of the Cal gymnasts also, one of their few errors on the night)  Arizona’s next gymnast, Selynna Felix-Terrazas brushed off Cindric’s fall and scored a 9.85!  And Kennady Schneier redeemed herself after the uneven bars and finished the floor rotation with a 9.90.

At this point, it didn’t look like Arizona could catch Cal, especially finishing with the beam, which hasn’t been the Cats’ best event.  Coach Yim has stated the Wildcats are better on beam than their performances have shown.  Monday night they proved the coach right.

While there was no way to win the meet at that point, Arizona had tremendous performances from all six gymnasts on the balance beam.  In fact, Maddy Cindric put her floor exercise out of her mind and was steady on the beam, her favorite event, and stuck the landing.  The team’s  balance beam results are an excellent way to head into this weekend’s home meet with Stanford.

McKale will be rocking this weekend.  The Arizona basketball team hosts UCLA and USC Friday and Sunday.

In between on Saturday night, the Arizona Gymnastics team will host the Cardinal at 7 p.m.  Make it a 3-day Wildcat Weekend and come out and support the GymCats.  For those not living in Tucson, tune into Pac-12 Channel to watch Arizona Gymnastics and the fastest 2 hours of television.  And a heads-up for Wildcat fans in Phoenix, mark February 22nd on your calendar when Arizona visits ASU at Wells Fargo Arena.

Next: UCLA is Coming to Town, Get the Low Down

Arizona Gymnastics:  Bear Down and #ArizonaStick.