March 21, 2013
The Air Force women's gymnastics team makes a return trip to Seattle this weekend for the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Championships. The March 23 meet, which features Air Force, Alaska-Anchorage, Seattle Pacific and UC Davis, will take place at Brougham Pavilion and is slated to begin at 6:00 p.m. (PST).
Saturday's conference championship meet will be held at Brougham Pavilion, which is located on the campus of Seattle Pacific University. Tickets are $6 for adults and $3 for youth, students and senior citizens. SPU will have live stats and a live webcast ... both of which can be found at www.spufalcons.com.
SCOUTING THE FIELD
All four squads hold Regional Qualifying Scores that are separated by less than three total points. UC Davis currently leads the MPSF with a 194.625 RQS, while Air Force (193.265), Seattle Pacific (192.125) and Alaska-Anchorage (191.720) round out the conference standings. UC Davis also holds the best team marks on all four events, while the Aggie gymnasts hold the top spots on three of the four apparatuses, as well as the all-around.
UC Davis has won four of the last five Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Championship titles (2008, 2010, 2011, 2012). Alaska-Anchorage (2009) and Seattle Pacific (2006, 2007) have also won conference titles, while the remaining four titles went to former conference members Sacramento State (2002, 2003, 2005) and San Jose State (2004).
AROUND THE LEAGUE
Four Falcons are ranked among the conference's top five, based on regional qualifying averages. Jessica Wallander and Linnaea Hance hold the Falcons' top MPSF rankings, as they are listed third on the vault (9.805 RQS) and uneven bars (9.800), respectively. Jessica Hanner is ranked fourth on the balance beam (9.800), while Katie is listed fifth on the uneven bars (9.760). Wallander is also tied for fifth on the floor exercise (9.760), while Hawthorne and Hance are ranked third (38.670) and fourth (38.655), respectively, in the all-around.
LOOKING BACK AT THE MPSF SEASON
Air Force is 3-2 against its Mountain Pacific Sports Federation opponents. The Falcons swept Seattle Pacific during a home-and-home season series, while edging Alaska Anchorage at a neutral site competition in early March. UC Davis is the only team the Falcons have yet to defeat, as the Aggies claimed victories over Air Force during triangular-meet competitions at the Academy and again at Davis.
A BUSY STRETCH
Air Force closed out the regular season with four meets in three states over an eight-day span. The Falcons opened the trip at the Eagle Invitational in Michigan on Saturday, March 9, before returning to the Academy for a dual meet with Denver on Monday, March 11. Air Force then closed out the busy travel schedule with a trip to California for meets at UC Davis (Friday, March 15) and Sacramento State (Sunday, March 17).
FALCONS DROP REMATCH WITH SACRAMENTO STATE
Air Force claimed three of the top-six finishes on the uneven bars, but the Falcons dropped their regular season finale to Sacramento State by a 194.925-192.675 margin on Sunday, March 17. Linnaea Hance, Katie Hawthorne and Alexandra Stych placed fourth (9.750), fifth (9.725) and sixth (9.700), respectively, on that event for the Falcons' best event performance of the night.
AIR FORCE TALLIES TOP-ROAD SCORE OF DAY-ERA
Just one meet after setting a Day-era record for the overall team score, the Falcons recorded another Day-best mark. Air Force claimed its highest road score since 2007 at the UC Davis Triangular on Friday, March 15, as it tallied a mark of 193.400 to finish third behind UC Davis (195.625) and Sacramento State (194.875). Air Force's combined score is an improvement of over one-point from the previous best road mark (193.300), which had stood since a meet at Denver on March 22, 2010.
HANCE ADDS ANOTHER 39-POINT ALL-AROUND
Linnaea Hance surpassed the 39-point mark for the second time this season during the Falcons' third-place finish at the UC Davis Triangular on March 15. The junior finished third in the all-around with a score of 39.025, marking the second time this season that she has bettered the 39-point mark in the multi-event competition. Contributing to the second-highest all-around score of her career was a runner-up finish on the uneven bars (9.825).
DID YOU KNOW?
By breaking the 39-point score in the all-around for the second time in 2013, Linnaea Hance has twice now accomplished a feat that no Air Force gymnast had done at any during point during the 2005-2012 seasons.
WHAT'S AHEAD FOR THE FALCONS
The Falcons are off from competition next weekend, as they prepare for the NCAA Regional Championships (Apr. 6) and the USAG Championships (April 12-14).