Gymnastics 2004 Season Outlook

Senior Brogan Jacobsen waves to a cheering crowd after scoring a perfect 10.0 last season. (Photo by Mark Philbrick/BYU Photo)

12/02/2003-After a strong, satisfying performance in the 2003 season, the Cougars look optimistically at yet another promising season. With fresh, new faces, the gymnastics team anticipates many positive surprises and successes throughout the year.

The team set two new record highs last year -- Kari Lords scored a perfect 10.0 on beam and Brogan Jacobsen scored a perfect 10.0 on floor. Cougar fans can look forward to more scintillating floor performances by Jacobsen and to consistently strong beam and vault executions by Lords.

Brad Cattermole, BYU gymnastics coach, said he anticipates a strong team, particularly in beam and vault.

"This year we have eight 10.0 vaulters," Cattermole said. "Most schools don't have anywhere near that many."

Seniors Trisha Ashton, Megan Pessoa, Jacobsen and Lords are all strong competitors, expected to guide this young team by their experience and grace under pressure. Ashton specializes in vault and Pessoa excels in vault and beam.

The Cougars are led for the second year by team co-captains, Ashton and Jacobsen.

Setting personal bests in all events last season, juniors Kirsten Pauga and Jaime Mabray are expected to be strong forces in the upcoming competitions.

Also returning to compete for the Cougars are Staci Butterfield, Meghan Donahue, Jennifer Harvey, Lena Johnson and Lisa Willis.

New gymnasts include Candace Bauer, Kacie Capra, Genevieve Claveau, Marie-Helene Claveau, Sierra Jacobs, Kandis Kelly, LeAnne Lindsay, and Dayna Smart.

The gymnastics team was sad to lose strong seniors, Lindsay Butterfield, Brooke Haskett, Mindi Hilton and Candace Slater. But this season's new freshmen are a welcomed addition to the team.

Cattermole said the freshmen have a strong work ethic, always ready to get out on the floor and practice.

"Genevieve is by far the best beam worker we've got," Cattermole said.

Twin sister, Marie-Helene, was team captain for the 2003 Canada Games. Jacobs is a four-year Junior Olympian. Bauer and Capra were both 2003 Junior Olympic Regional Champions.

"When I look at the team, they just don't realize how good they could be," said Brad Cattermole, BYU gymnastics coach. "This team could be the best team we've ever had. A lot is going to come down to what they do on the floor."

The Cougars will kick off their season on Jan. 9 against Kentucky University, in Lexington, KY.

The team will also be going up against No. 6 University of Utah, No. 12 Oregon State and No. 19 Arizona. The season will be challenging, but the Cougars are hopeful, focused and ready.

Cattermole said the team isn't focusing on the competition, but on improving the gymnasts' personal performances.

"You just get out and do your thing. If you can control your mind and make fewer mistakes, it will put more pressure on the other team," he said.

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