The league’s trio of gymnastics teams have been selected to compete in the six-team field regionals of the National Collegiate Women’s Gymnastics Championships on Saturday, April 6.
The second-ranked Oklahoma Sooners garnered the No. 1 seed in the NCAA Norman Regional which takes place at Lloyd Noble Center at 4 p.m. CT. The Sooners will play host to No. 11 Stanford, No. 14 Penn State, No. 22 Washington, Iowa and Southern Utah.
Oklahoma is led by Big 12 Coach of the Year K.J. Kindler who has guided the Sooners to the nation’s best record at 21-1 this year. OU won its fifth Big 12 Championship in the last six seasons last Saturday while also sweeping every individual title. OU junior Taylor Spears, the Big 12 Gymnast of the Year, won the all-around and tied for the bars and beam conference titles.
Iowa State will travel to Tuscaloosa, Ala., to face No. 3 Alabama, No. 9 Utah, No. 15 Denver, No. 23 Kent State and BYU at 5 p.m. CT in Coleman Coliseum. The Cyclones have placed second the last two times (2005 and 2007) they competed in Coleman Coliseum in NCAA Regional competition. ISU is coming off a season-best performance, scoring 196.175 to place second at Saturday’s Big 12 Championship in Hilton Coliseum.
West Virginia is the No. 5 seed in the regional it will host in Morgantown, W.Va., at 6 p.m. ET. The Mountaineers will face No. 5 Michigan, No. 8 Nebraska, No. 17 Illinois, No. 19 Kentucky and North Carolina. WVU has four gymnasts nationally ranked this week with senior Kaylyn Millick leading that pack. She is ranked No. 27 nationally in the all-around with a 39.3 regional qualifying score (RQS). The Mountaineers (13-9, 1-3) rank just outside the top 25 this week at No. 26 (195.78).
The top two teams and the top two all-around competitors (who are not on an advancing team) from each regional will receive an automatic berth to the national championships in Los Angeles, Calif., April 19-21, hosted by UCLA.
In addition, the event winners at each regional site will advance to the national championships (in that event only) if they are not part of a qualifying team or an all-around qualifier.