Yamamura, Montell Earn NCAA Berths

Katie Yamamura (left) and Tiana Montell (right) have both qualified for the NCAA Seattle Regional on April 7.<br>(Wayne Tilcock, <i>Davis Enterprise</I>)
 
Katie Yamamura (left) and Tiana Montell (right) have both qualified for the NCAA Seattle Regional on April 7.
(Wayne Tilcock, Davis Enterprise)
 

March 26, 2012

DAVIS, Calif. - Junior Katie Yamamura and freshman Tiana Montell have been selected to represent UC Davis as individual at-large competitors at the NCAA Seattle Region women's gymnastics championship, it was announced on Monday. Both Aggies will compete as all-arounders. Yamamura was named Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Gymnast of the Year while Montell captured the conference all-around title in Saturday's championship meet.

Yamamura and Montell will join Sacramento State's Kalliah McCartney and Cal's Mariesah Pierce and Madisyn O'Brien as the five at-large all-arounders. The Hornets also qualified two additional gymnasts on individual events: Nicole Meiller on vault and bars, Kailey Hansen on floor exercise. Nicolette Lew will join her Golden Bear teammates as the event qualifier on balance beam.

The six teams at the Seattle Regional, held on Saturday, April 7, are Alabama, LSU, Arizona, Iowa, Central Michigan and host Washington.

Yamamura finished the season with a regional-qualifying score of 38.940 in the all-around, helped by a school-record 39.225 on March 11. She previously qualified for an NCAA regional in 2010. With a 38.210 RQS, Montell posted scores of 38.450, 38.625 and 38.725 during the past three weeks to move into postseason contention.

UC Davis captured its third straight MPSF title on Saturday. This is the third straight year the Aggies have sent at least one all-arounder to the NCAA regionals and the third year overall UC Davis has had two all-arounders qualify in the same year. Flora Bare and Ericka Ruelas both made the cut in 2001, eight years after Jill Henrie and Ashley Lindow became the first to compete at the Division I competition.