It is the third time in league history that the Sooners have claimed the Event Specialist award for three consecutive weeks (2008, 2010). It also marks the third time the same MU gymnast has earned three-straight weekly awards (Sarah Shire, Gymnast of the Week in 2009; Sarah Shire, Gymnast of the Week in 2010).
BIG 12 GYMNAST OF THE WEEK
Taylor Spears, Oklahoma, So., Plano, Texas
In her first career all-around appearance, Spears captured the title at the TWU quad meet on Saturday to lead the Sooners to the highest road score in the NCAA this season (197.540). The sophomore posted a career-high 9.900 on vault to finish second, as well as boasted a career-high-tying 9.875 on floor. Spears rounded out her evening scoring a 9.800 on bars and 9.625 on beam. The native of Plano, Texas, has earned a 9.8 or higher in six of her last seven routines. Spears is the first Sooner to compete in the all-around this season, and only the third OU gymnast to compete on all four apparatuses in the past three seasons.
BIG 12 EVENT SPECIALIST OF THE WEEK
Sara Stone, Oklahoma, Sr., Dallas, Texas
Stone claimed the event title on vault Saturday night with a season-high 9.925. The senior tabbed a 9.925 on floor and a career-high 9.85 on beam to place second in both events. Stone's scores helped Oklahoma sweep every event in the quad meet. The Dallas-native has scored a 9.9 or higher in three routines this season.
BIG 12 NEWCOMER OF THE WEEK
Rachel Updike, Missouri, Fr., Olathe, Kan.
In Missouri's upset over then 16th-ranked Denver on Friday, Updike took home titles in all three events for the second time this season. The freshman produced a 9.875 on vault, 9.800 on beam and recorded a 9.925 for her floor routine. The Olathe, Kan.-native has been a frontrunner for the Tigers this year, leading the squad to a 3-0 record for the first time since the 2010 campaign. She joins Sarah Shire as the only Missouri gymnasts to earn three-consecutive weekly league honors.
|Date||Gymnast of the Week||Event Specialist of the Week||Newcomer of the Week|
|Jan. 10||Michelle Browning, Iowa State, Sr.||Brie Olson, Oklahoma, Jr.||Rachel Updike, Missouri, Fr.|
|Jan. 17||Mary Burke, Missouri, Sr.||Taylor Spears, Oklahoma, So.||Rachel Updike, Missouri, Fr.|
|Jan. 24||Taylor Spears, Oklahoma, So.||Sara Stone, Oklahoma, Sr.||Rachel Updike, Missouri, Fr.|