Dec. 31, 2013
San Jose, Calif. - The San José State University women's gymnastics team begins the 2014 season on Jan. 5 at the NorCal Meet with No. 22 California, Sacramento State, No. 9 Stanford and UC Davis. The meet, hosted by Sacramento State, begins at 2:00 p.m.
LIVE STATS: Live stats for the meet will be available on http://SJSUspartans.com.
SAN JOSÉ STATE: The Spartans begin the season optimistically, returning 11 letterwinners from its 2013 squad that sent two all-around competitors to the NCAA Corvallis Regional, returning seniors Bekah Gher and Cassandra Harrison. Harrison, a First Team All-WAC honoree on floor, performed four 9.900 floor routines during the season. Named Second Team All-WAC in the all-around, Gher earned career-high scores on vault, bars, floor and in the all-around during her first season as a Spartan. They were two of four gymnasts to garner All-WAC honors last season, including returning junior Cami Guyer, the program's first beam conference champion since 2003.
HEAD COACH: The San José State University women's gymnastics team head coach is Wayne Wright in his 13th season. The 2012 NCAA West Regional Coach of the Year has brought six teams to an NCAA Regional since 2003 and at least two gymnasts have competed as individuals each season in that time.
CALIFORNIA: The 2013 Golden Bears had its best season in six years, advancing as a team to a NCAA Regional for the first time since 2007, and begins 2014 with a No. 22 preseason ranking. The club returns Pac-12 Freshman of the Year Serena Leong, who finished in the top-three on vault, beam or floor at eight meets last season. The team's top all-arounder, returning senior Alicia Asturias was an All-Pac-12 Second Team honoree, earning 18 combined top-three finishes in the five events. The Pac-12 and NACGC/W West Region Coach of the Year Justin Howell is in his second season.
SACRAMENTO STATE: In 2014, the Hornets will look to build upon its third-place finish at last season's WAC Championship. The club's best gymnast in 2013, returning junior Kaliah McCartney placed sixth at the NCAA Corvallis Regional in the all-around last season. She won the all-around in 11 meets during 2013 and was a three-time WAC Gymnast of the Week. Also competing at the 2013 NCAA Corvallis Regional was returning senior Kailey Hansen, who earned at least a 9.800 on the apparatus in four meets. In his 31st season, Sacramento State's head coach is Kim Hughes.
STANFORD: The ninth-ranked Cardinal returns 12 of 15 gymnasts, including five All-Americans, from its 2013 club that concluded the season ranked 13th. Returning senior Amanda Spinner, the 2013 Pac-12 Specialist of the Year, was the fifth-best beam performer nationally. The NCAA Norman Regional champion on beam and vault, returning junior Ivana Hong earned a 9.900 or higher five times on both apparatuses and was a NACGC/W second team All-American on beam. Kristen Smyth is in her 12th year as Stanford's head coach.
UC DAVIS: The 2013 MPSF Champions finished the season ranked ninth in the west, sending three gymnasts to the NCAA Corvallis Regional. Nine gymnasts return, including senior Anna Shumaker, who earned All-MPSF honors in four of five events last season. Returning for her junior season is Lisa Wiktorski, a 2013 All-MPSF honoree on bars. At the helm of UC Davis' women's gymnastics program for his eighth season is 2013 MPSF Coach of the Year John Lavallee.
FACEBOOK: Catch up with San José State women's gymnastics on Facebook. Like "SJSU Gymnastics" and get video and an inside look into the program. Performances will be posted to the page following each meet.
TWITTER: Follow @SJSUAthletics for information on the Spartans and @SJSUgymnastics to get a behind-the-scenes look at the gymnastics team. At the NorCal Quad, San José State's progress after each rotation will be tweeted on @SJSUAthletics, along with photos and videos of the Spartans at the meet.
TICKETS: Ticket prices for the NorCal Meet at the Hornets Nest are $8 for adults, $5 for youth ages 13-18 and free for children under 12 and seniors over 65 years of age. To purchase tickets online, go to https://tkt.xosn.com/HomePage.dbml?&DB_OEM_ID=29300. Tickets can also be purchased with cash or check at the Hornets Nest ticket booth on meet day.
UP NEXT: The Spartans travel to south to Arizona State on Jan. 11 at 7:00 p.m. (MT) to compete against Sacramento State for the second-consecutive week and the 25th-ranked Sun Devils.