COLUMBIA, Mo. – Last week, three Missouri gymnasts were selected to compete individually at the Fayetteville NCAA Regional. This Saturday, Apr. 5, junior Rachel Updike leads Missouri into the competition, as she looks to advance to NCAA Nationals on vault.
Updike is one-of-nine individual competitors set for Saturday's Regional inside Barnhill Arena. The Olathe, Kan. native joins the six teams vying for a trip to Nationals later this month. Utah, UCLA, Arkansas, Arizona State, Utah State, and UC Davis will all fight for a top-two team finish, as they hope to advance their 2014 campaigns.
Fellow Tigers teammates, junior Rebecca Johnson and freshman Angie Kern, will serve as event alternates in Fayetteville, Ark. Johnson was recognized for her sensational comeback season on the uneven bars, while Kern enjoyed a standout freshmen campaign on floor.
Fans can access more information on the Fayetteville Regional at www.ArkansasRazorbacks.com. Ticket information, live stats and live video links are all available through the website.
Get To Know The Tigers Individual Competitor
Updike paced Missouri during the 2014 season, after compiling 19 event titles. As shown by her individual nomination for Regionals, Updike's greatest success this year came on vault. Spanning from Jan. 24 – Feb. 23, the junior racked up six consecutive event titles on the apparatus. Updike's season high score of 9.925 on vault came at two separate meets, as she posted the top score on Jan. 24 against Kentucky and on Feb. 21 against George Washington.
Johnson made a triumphant return from injury this year, after missing all of the 2013 season. Her 9.860 RQS score on bars ranks T-59th in the country and 12th within the South Central Region. This year marked the first career appearance on bars for Johnson, as she set five new personal bests on the event. In three consecutive meets (Feb. 14 – Feb. 23), the Pewaukee, Wis. native recorded bars event titles, and twice hit her career-high score of 9.900.
Kern was one-of-five Missouri newcomers this season, and made her mark in both the vault and floor lineups. The Columbia, Mo. native picked up her first career event title on Feb. 21 against George Washington, after recording a meet best score of 9.875 on floor. Kern finished her regular season with a solid 9.795 RQS score on floor, as she tallied scores of 9.800 or higher on the event four times this year.
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