The UC Davis gymnastics team set the bar high for the rest of the season after a strong start in their first competition in the NorCal Quad meet held at San Jose State University on Jan. 4.
The Aggies finished in third place out of four teams with a record score of 191.400 for the school. They competed against Stanford, the No. 6 team in the nation, who finished with a score of 192.425 and San Jose State, who posted a score of 192.875.
“Although it was the highest opening score in school history, which is a good way to start, the score is still a bit low for this team,” said head coach and reigning Mountain Pacific Sports Federation coach of the year John Lavallee.
Senior co-captain Michelle Ho won the uneven bars with a score of 9.800 and came second in the floor exercise with an identical score. Her performance on the uneven bars tied her previous career high she set in 2011.
“Michelle did a great job to start her season with scores that high especially with a team like Stanford in the building,” Lavallee said.
Junior Anna Shumaker came in fourth place for the all around in her first ever performance in that event at the collegiate level. She came in fourth place on vault with a score of 9.825 that contributed to her overall score of 37.875.
“It was her first all around performance at UC Davis and she had a great vault. Overall she did an excellent job competing in the four events,” Lavallee said.
Three freshmen made their college debuts for the Aggies. Dani Judal led the Aggies in beam squad with a 9.700. Jamie Yamashita and Stephanie Stamates both competed in three events in their first college appearance.
“The three freshmen did a great job competing in three events in their first college match,” Lavallee said.
This week the Aggie will head to face UC Berkeley at home and are looking for ways to improve.
“In reality, it was the first meet and we have a long way to go in terms of execution and performance level,” Lavallee said. “We were excellent in conducting ourselves as a team.”
– Jason Min