April 9, 2004
DENTON, Texas - Junior Tiffany Chan scored a meet-best 9.775 on vault and helped the Aggie floor squad compile a team total of 48.900 as UC Davis placed third in the team final of the USAG Collegiate National Championships at Texas Woman's University Friday. The Aggies scored 192.100 in the four-team session.
Centenary College of Louisiana, which won Thursday's preliminaries, also captured the team title with a 193.500 total. The host Pioneers finished second at 192.600. Temple University placed fourth with a 191.575 mark.
"I think coming in fifth and coming out third is a good accomplishment," said UC Davis head coach Ray Goldbar. "Texas and Centenary are just better teams. They counted a few misses and still scored higher. We just need a little more depth and difficulty."
UC Davis drew Olympic order for the competition, starting on vault and concluding with floor exercise. Senior captain Heidi Bortfeld and freshman Nickie Bykhovsky posted identical 9.550 to lead off the meet, and Chan put up her mark as the Aggies opened with a 48.075 in the first rotation. The Owls had the next highest team vault score, hitting 47.725.
Arianne Furman recorded a team-high 9.650 on bars in the second rotation, but UC Davis counted one fall in the event, scoring a 47.525. Freshman Julia Richards and junior Nicole Doherty highlighted the Aggies on beam with scores of 9.750 and 9.700, respectively. But again UC Davis had to count one miss, compiling a 47.600 mark.
Doherty led off the fourth and final rotation with a 9.775 on floor exercise, her second-highest score of the year in that event. Freshman Carolyn Kampf followed with a 9.725, redshirt freshman Megan Nakagawa posted a 9.700 despite losing a tenth for an out-of-bounds violation, then Richards hit 9.825 in the fourth slot. Chan put up a 9.875 to push UC Davis above the 192-point threshold and into third place in the meet.
Although no individual places are officially tabulated, Chan's floor mark tied TWU's Jennifer Bolli for the second-highest in the team final. Sarah Racioppi of CCL had the highest floor score, hitting 9.925. Additionally, Chan's vault score was .775 higher than any other competitor in the meet.
Richards' beam score was her highest since February 27, trailing only Kaela Meinert, who scored 9.800 for Centenary. Meinert's teammate Kristina Menne posted the highest bars mark of the final, hitting 9.800 as part of a team total of 48.300.
The USAG national meet continues Saturday with the individual event championships. Chan will vie for All-America status on vault and beam. Doherty and sophomore Hanna Anderson each will make their first-ever appearance in the national event final, competing on bars and beam, respectively.
USAG COLLEGIATE NATIONAL TEAM FINALS - Denton, Texas
TEAM SCORES - 1. Centenary (La.) 193.500; 2. Texas Woman's 192.600; 3. UC Davis 192.100; 4. Temple 191.575.
Note: No individual places were kept.