Cougars Set to Compete at NCAA Championships Thursday in Boise

PROVO -- BYU is one of 12 teams set to compete this week at the NCAA Women's Gymnastics Championships beginning Thursday in Boise, Idaho.

BYU qualified for the national meet after placing second at the NCAA Region 6 meet in Athens, Ga. The top two finishers at each of the six regional meets advanced to this week's national meet, which features team preliminary competition on Thursday, team finals Friday and individual finals Saturday.

"The difference in our team this year compared to some of our past (nationals) teams is that we are not concerned with what other teams are at nationals or with what draw we have received," BYU coach Brad Cattermole said. "It has made for a more relaxed, confident group. We don't want to have to count any major breaks or falls. We are just concentrating on executing the routine and sticking the landing."

Other teams to qualify for the NCAA Championship meet include Utah, UCLA, Oregon State, West Virginia, Nebraska, Louisiana State, Alabama, Iowa State, Michigan, Penn State and Georgia.

The Cougars will compete in the first session of the team preliminary competition on Thursday beginning at 1 p.m. Competing with BYU in the first session will be Utah, Georgia, Alabama, Oregon State and Louisiana State. The second session follows with the remaining six teams at 7 p.m.

BYU History at Nationals

This is BYU's seventh NCAA Championships appearance as a team and fifth in the last seven years. The Cougars have also had individual qualifiers six seasons. Including AIAW competition, BYU has qualified for nationals 10 times as a team. Since Brad Cattermole took over the program in 1989, BYU has advanced to NCAA Regionals in 11 of 12 seasons and to the NCAA Championships in seven of 12 seasons. BYU's best NCAA Championships finish was eighth place in 1991. BYU's best national finish is a sixth-place AIAW finish in 1982. BYU last qualified for the NCAA Championships in 1998, placing 12th. The other years BYU has competed at the final NCAA meet of the year was in 1996 (12th), 1995 (10th), 1994 (9th), 1992 (12th) and 1991 (eighth). BYU qualified for the AIAW national competition in 1982 (sixth), 1981 (10th) and 1980 (seventh).

NCAA Championships Schedule

Wednesday, April 12

11 a.m. -- Session 1 Workout

BYU, Oregon State,

Alabama, Penn State

3-4 p.m. -- Press Conference

Thursday, April 13

1 p.m. -- Team Preliminary Session 1 Competition

BYU, Utah, Alabama, Oregon State,

Georgia, Louisiana State

BYU's Rotation Order

1. Floor

2. Vault

3. Bye

4. Bars

5. Beam

6. Bye

• LSU starts on Vault

• Georgia with Bye (bars)

• OSU on Bars

• Alabama on Beam

• Utah with Bye (floor)

7 p.m. -- Team Preliminary Session 2 Competition

Nebraska, Michigan, West Virginia,

UCLA, Iowa State, Penn State

Friday, April 14

7 p.m. -- Team Finals Competition

Saturday, April 15

10 a.m. -- NCAA Championship Brunch

7 p.m. -- Individual Events Finals Competition

BYU's Possible Nationals Lineup

FLOOR

1. Candace Cosgrave

2. Brooke Craig

3. Denice Pauga

4. Marisa Cosgrave

5. Kim Little

6. Kelly Parkinson

VAULT

1. Mindi Hilton

2. Hilary Johnson

3. Denice Pauga

4. Kim Little

5. Angie Hickman

6. Kelly Parkinson

BARS

1. Jeni Thomas

2. Kim Little

3. Mindi Hilton

4. Kelly Parkinson

5. Denice Pauga

6. Leah Niepraschk

BEAM

1. Brooke Craig

2. Karen Nielsen

3. Kim Little

4. Jeni Thomas

5. Kelly Parkinson

6. Denice Pauga

Looking Back at Regionals

The Cougars were the number two seed in the Region 6 meet behind No. 3-ranked Georgia. BYU finished the year ranked 11th with a regional qualifying score of 195.585.

BYU finished second, edging Towson University to advance to the NCAA Championships along with host Georgia. BYU's Leah Niepraschk nailed a 9.9 bars routine in BYU's final performance to seal the second-place finish for the Cougars. Kelly Parkinson's 9.9 vault was also a key performance for the Cougars.

BYU 2000 Schedule/Results

Date Meet

Jan. 14 Oregon State 0-1

Jan. 20-22 Invitational RMO 2-1

Jan. 28 Iowa State 1-0

Feb. 4 Utah 0-1

Feb. 11 Utah State 0-1

Feb. 21 Stanford 0-1

Feb. 24 Utah State 1-0

Feb. 29 Southern Utah 0-1

Mar. 3 Oregon State 1-2

Mar. 10 Southern Utah 1-0

Mar. 13 Nebraska 0-1

Mar. 18 Utah, Southern Utah 1-1

Apr. 1 NCAA Region 6 4-1

Apr. 13-15 NCAA Champs.

Overall Record 11-11