2008 NCAA Central Regionals Saturday, April 12 6:00 p.m. Baton Rouge, La.

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1 NCAA Central Regional Notes Tigers travel to NCAA Central Regional On the heels of its third place finish at the Big 12 Championships over the weekend, the No. 18 Missouri Gymnastics squad received a bid to compete in the NCAA Central Regional for a shot to qualify for the NCAA National Championships. The bid secures the Tigers seventh NCAA Regional appearance in a row and 20th in the programs 28-year history NCAA Central Regionals Saturday, April 12 6:00 p.m. Baton Rouge, La. The Tigers earned the third seed at the event while No. 6 Stanford earned the top seed. No. 7 LSU, the host school, earned the second seed with Ohio State, Kent State and Kentucky rounding out the field. The Tigers will begin the meet on vault and rotate events just like a normal home meet, but with the six team format, the Tigers will receive byes between vault and bars and beam and floor. The top two teams and the top two all-around competitors not on an advancing team from each regional will receive an automatic berth to the NCAA National Championships in Athens, Ga., April 24-26, hosted by the University of Georgia. Event winners at the regional championships will also advance to the national championships (in that event only) if they are not part of a qualifying team or are not all-around qualifiers. Last season, the Tigers finished third at the NCAA West Regional and will look to improve upon that finish this season as they look to place in the top two, qualifying them for the NCAA National Championship Rotation order... The Tigers drew the typical home meet rotation, the best draw due to familiarity. The rotation is below. Rotation Vault Bye Bars Beam Bye Floor 1. MU Stan. LSU Kent. KSU OSU 2. OSU MU Stan. LSU Kent KSU 3. KSU OSU MU Stan. LSU Kent. 4. Kent. KSU OSU MU Stan. LSU 5. LSU Kent. KSU OSU MU Stan. 6. Stan. LSU Kent. KSU OSU MU Mizzou in the rankings The Tigers fell two spots to 18th this week after topping No. 23 Arizona State on Friday. The Tigers have ranked as high as 12th this season. Currently, Mizzou s highest event ranking is on both beam and vault, where they rank 18th. The Tigers also rank 21ston floor and 27th on bars. Aside from the national rankings, the Tigers rank third in the Big 12 and fifth in the South Central region. Last time out The Tigers tied their highest finish ever at the Big 12 Championships by finishing in third place. The Tigers lead the meet almost the entire way, and were up by two tenths on No. 9 Oklahoma as they headed into the final rotation. Once on the balance beam, the Tigers struggled and had to count a fall, making way for both Oklahoma and Iowa State to sneak past. Perry Become Mizzou s First Big 12 Champ in the All-Around The highlight of the meet for the Tigers was junior Adrianne Perry, who won the schools first ever Big 12 title in the all-around and also became the fourth Tiger gymnast to earn the title Big 12 Champion. Perry posted a , winning the all-around over some of the best gymnasts in the nation, including Big 12 Gymnast of the Year Kiara Redmond-Sturms and last years champ Emily Parsons. Perry has now won the all-around in six of her last seven meets. Perry also took home the honor on floor as she tallied a 9.900, tying Redmond-Sturms. Sarah Shire Wins Big 12 Newcomer of the Year After claiming 19 event titles, three all-around crowns and one Big 12 Gymnast of the Week award, Sarah Shire s season culminated as she earned Big 12 Newcomer of the Year after the Big 12 Championship on Saturday. Shire becomes the third Tiger in the conference s 13 year history to take home the award. Teammate Adrianne Perry earned the honor in 2006 and former Tiger Alisha Robinson took home the award in Three Tigers Earn Spot on All-Big 12 Conference Team and Championship Team... Adrianne Perry and Alicia Hatcher earned back-to-back All-Big 12 Conference honors while newcomer Sarah Shire was also named to the conference team. Perry and Shire earned a spot in the vault lineup. Perry is a repeat performer as she earned the same award last season. Shire s spot on the vault team is her first Big 12 honor. Hatcher earned a spot on bars, repeating her All-Conference performance from last season. The top four Big 12 gymnasts with the highest regional qualifying score (RQS) in each event, excluding all-around, determine Rank Team RQS Region 1 Georgia SE 2 Utah NC 3 Florida SE 4 Alabama C 5 Michigan NE 6 Stanford W 7 L.S.U C 8 Oregon State W 9 UCLA W 10 Oklahoma SC 11 Arkansas SC 12 Auburn Univ C 13 Denver NC 14 Arizona SC 15 Nebraska SC 16 Boise State W 17 Michigan State C 18 Missouri SC 19 Arizona State SC 20 Kentucky C 21 NC State SE 22 Penn State NE 23 Iowa, U. of NC 24 Illinois SC 25 West Virginia SE

2 News and Notes Page 2 All-Conference honors. The RQS can be obtained from GymInfo.com. The three standouts also took home honors at the Big 12 Championships as well, bringing home All-Big 12 Championship Team honors. Perry earned a spot on floor, bars and beam. Hatcher was honored with a spot on the bars team while Shire earned a spot on the beam team. Nine Tigers earn academic honors Nine Tiger gymnasts have earned Academic All-Big 12 first team honors, giving them the most selections for the third consecutive season. All four seniors, Julie Abaray, Nikki Bowman, Ashley Khederian and Lisa Puccio earned honors while junior Alicia Hatcher and Adrianne Perry also were rewarded. Sophomores Brooke Boehmer, Becky Scholle and Liz Straatmann also earned first team status. The nine Tigers on the first team accounted for 45-percent of the first team as nine of the 20 student-athletes on the first team were from Mizzou. Six of Seven for Perry Earning a in the all-around at the Big 12 Championship, Adrianne Perry has now claimed all-around titles in six of the Tigers last seven meets. Dating back to the Tigers road trip to SEMO on February 15th, Perry has been on a tear through the world of collegiate gymnastics. Getting off to a somewhat slow start, only by her standards, Perry has been virtually unstoppable. She has also topped some of the nation s best as well. Perry has defeated Kiara Redmond-Sturms of Oklahoma twice, Lindsey Bruck and Sarah Curtis of Michigan, Emily Parsons of Nebraska and Tiana Jean of Arizona State. Redmond-Sturms, Bruck and Parsons all rank in the top-10 while Curtis and Jean are just outside the top 25. The only meet in which she did not claim the title was at the Salbasgeon Suites Invitational at Oregon State when No. 6 Jami Lanz took home the title. All the way for Abaray Watching much of her senior season from the sidelines as she recovered from off-season knee surgery, Julie Abaray finally made it all the way back into the beam lineup. After exhibitioning in several meets, Abaray earned a spot in the lineup and responded brilliantly posting a en route to the Tigers fourth highest beam score of the season and highest since Feb. 22 against Oklahoma. All-Around great Gymnasts Boasting two of the best all-arounders in the nation, the Tigers have had an all-around champion in all but two meets this season. Both Adrianne Perry and Sarah Shire have combined to earn ten all-around crowns in 12 Tiger meets. The only meets in which the Perry or Shire did not take home the title was at Nebraska and Oregon State. Perry has seven allaround titles, including six in the last seven meets while Shire has corralled three, including a against Centenary earning her Big 12 Gymnast of the week. Don t know what you got till it s gone It is hard to believe that while at Utah, sophomore Sarah Shire was only in the floor lineup once, and that was due to injuries to several of their key gymnasts. This year, Shire has proved the age old adage that you don t know what you got till it s gone to Utah. Shire currently ranks 30th in the nation on floor and spent three weeks ranked in the top 10 on the event, climbing as high as fifth. Hard to believe that she never competed in the event while at Utah. Living up to the hype When Sarah Shire transferred to Mizzou from Utah, the hype surrounding her could not have been bigger. In eight meets this season, Shire has exceeded expectations and proved to be one of the best gymnasts in the nation as a sophomore. Aside from her skills on both beam and vault, Shire has excelled on floor and bars and in the all-around. Shire has set personal bests on bars and floor in 2008 and keeps getting better week in and week out. Shire currently ranks 27th on vautl, 30th on floor and 36th in the all-around. As steady as they come It is hard to argue that there has been a more consistent Tiger than Alicia Hatcher this season. In a bars lineup that has struggled at times in 2008, Hatcher has been a bright spot. Tallying a against Arizona St., Hatcher has now scored higher than on bars in nine of eleven meets, maxing out at in five of those meets. She has not scored lower than a on the event all season long. Her performance on beam has been equally as impressive, earning a or higher in eight of the eleven meets as well this season. Hatcher was also rewarded for her efforts, claming Big 12 Event Specialist of the Week honors back on January 29 following her standout performance at Nebraska. Raising the Bar Anchoring the bars seems to be a daunting task for any gymnast, but sophomore Liz Straatmann has embraced that role as of late. After earning her way into the lineup against Centenary, Straatmann has anchored the bar squad in every meet and has looked like she has been there all season long. Straatmann earned a career best against Centenary and a at the Cat Classic. Her consistent high scores have been one of the key reasons 2008 Missouri Tiger Roster Name Yr. Hgt. Events Hometown Club Team Julie Abaray Sr. 5-2 All-Around Cincinnati, Ohio Queen City Gymnastics Brooke Boehmer So. 5-4 All-Around Overland Park, Kan. Eagles Gymnastics Nikki Bowman Sr. 5-3 All-Around Virginia Beach, Va. World Class Gymnastics Alex Gold Fr. 5-3 All-Around Plano, Texas Metroplex Danielle Guider So. 5-2 All-Around Nutley, N.J. U.S. Gymnastics Dev. Center Alicia Hatcher Jr. 5-6 All-Around Blue Springs, Mo. GAGE Ashley Khederian Sr. 5-2 All-Around Carlisle, Mass. Walker Gymnastics Lisa LaPerriere Fr. 5-3 All-Around Macomb, Mich. Olympia Gymnastics Adrianne Perry Jr. 5-3 All-Around Columbia, Mo. GAGE Lisa Puccio Sr. 5-3 All-Around Kirkwood, Mo. Gym Quarters Meghann Raub So. 5-6 All-Around West Lafayette, Ind. Wright s American Gymnastics Becky Scholle So. 5-1 All-Around Chesterfield, Mo. GymQuarters Sarah Shire So All-Around Hartsburg, Mo. GAGE Lauren Stephenson Fr. 5-3 All-Around Kansas City, Mo. Edge Gymnastics Liz Straatmann So. 5-1 All-Around Washington, Mo. GAGE

3 Page 3 for the turnaround on bars as of late for the Tigers. In fact, her on bars helped the Tigers come within.025 of the school record of against Centenary. Straatmann posted a at the Salbasgeon Suites invite and a last week against Arizona St. Fine tuned Once a self confessed sloppy gymnast, senior Ashley Khederian has cleaned up all of her routines for her final goaround with the Tigers. With her much cleaner routines, Khederian has made her mark for the Tigers in As one of three all-arounders on the team, Khederian consistently posts huge scores for the Tigers. In fact, until the beam three weeks ago, Khederian had not fallen on a single event, an amazing feat considering that she is the only Tiger to compete in every event at every meet this season. With improved form and higher scores, look for Khederian to start to make her name known nationwide. Khederian tallied a at the Salbasgeon suites invite, eclipsing that mark three times this season. Fabulous Frosh After posting a on vault at the Black and Gold intrasquad, Tiger fans got a good glimpse of what to expect from freshman Alex Gold. Gold lived up to those expectations in the first three meets, posting a in the first two and scoring a at Nebraska and a against Centenary. Also seeing time in the floor lineup, Gold tallied a at the Beauty and the Beast, the best of her collegiate career. Three s Company The Tigers have had three all-arounders in eight of their ten meets thus far in 2008, Adrianne Perry, Sarah Shire and Ashley Khederian. Only two meets this season have not features the tremendous trio, the opener at Bowling Green when Perry sat out on vault due to illness and the Tigers meet at SEMO when Shire sat out on bars to rest a sore The Three Tiger All-Arounders, Perry, Shire and Khederain News and Notes Missouri Information Location Columbia, Mo. Founded 1839 Enrollment 28,253 Nickname Tigers Colors Old Gold and Black Chancellor Dr. Brady S. Deaton Athletic Director Michael Alden SWA Sarah Reesman Conference Big 12 Affiliation NCAA Division I Home Arena Hearnes Center Capacity 13,611 Coaching Staff Head Coach Rob Drass Alma Mater Penn State, 1990 Record at School (8 years) Career Record same Best Way To Contact through media relations Office Phone (573) Associate Head Coach John Figueroa Office Phone (573) Assistant coach Amy Smith Alma Mater UCLA, 2001 Office Phone (573) Team Information 2007 Overall Record Postseason Record 3-2 Big 12 Record/Finish 1-2/Third 2006 Regional Qualifying Score NCAA Final Ranking 22nd Letterwinners Returning/Lost 12/4 Newcomers Four Credential Requests Direct all Missouri home meet credential requests to Shawn Davis, media relations associate, University of Missouri, P.O. Box 677, Columbia, MO Requests will also be accepted via and fax: (573) Requests should be made in writing on appropriate letterhead at least one week prior to any meet. Media Relations The Media Relations offices are located on the main concourse of the Hearnes Center in room 260 next to the old Mizzou ticket office. Easiest access is available through the West side of the Hearnes Center. F.Y.I. The MU Media Relations Office will provide rosters, game notes and media guides for the Tigers and opponents (when available) at each home meet. Interviews Members of the 2007 Missouri gymnastics team and coaching staff will be available for interviews by appointment only. In consideration for the student-athletes and their schedules, please request interviews at least one day in advance. During the week, interviews will primarily be conducted before practice. Please contact Kate Lakin in the Missouri Media Relations Office at (573) for interview availability and practice times. University of Missouri Policy prohibits the releasing of student-athlete home phone numbers to members of the media. Post-Meet Interviews Coach Drass will conduct post-meet interviews in the media room after a brief cooling-off period. A list of requests for athlete interviews should be submitted before the end of the meet. Athlete interviews will be conducted following Coach Drass remarks in the media room. Only credentialed media personnel will be permitted in the media room and onto the arena floor.

4 Season Statistics Page Missouri Tiger Schedule Team Season Results Overall: 11-7 Big 12: 1-2 J Bowling Green W, J 18 Pink Out W, Iowa St. J Nebraska L, F 1 UIC W, F 8 Centenary W, F SEMO W, F 22 Oklahoma L, F 29 Cat Classic 2nd/4, Cal Michigan Ohio State Meet Vault Bars Beam Floor Total Attend. W-L Bowling Green ROAD W Iowa State ,766 W Nebraska ROAD L Illinois-Chicago W Centenary ,308 W SEMO ROAD W Oklahoma L Cat Classic ,851 2nd/4 Illinois ROAD W Oregon St ROAD 3rd/4 Arizona St W Big 12 Champ rd/4 NCAA Region Average , Season Highs ,308 NA M Illinois W, M Oregon State 3rd/4, Boise St. Sacramento St. M 21 Arizona State W, M 29 Big 12 Championship 3rd/4 A 12 NCAA Central Regional 7 p.m. A 24 NCAA Championship 6 p.m. Individual Season Highs Vault Sarah Shire Twice Jan Adrainne Perry vs. Nebraska Jan. 25 Bars Adrianne Perry vs. Centenary Feb. 8 Beam Adrianne Perry vs. UIC Feb Sarah Shire vs. Oklahoma Feb. 22 Floor Sarah Shire vs. Centenary Feb Adrianne Perry vs. Arizona St. March 21 AA Sarah Shire vs. Centenary Feb Event Winners Alicia Hatcher (5) Bars vs. BGSU Bars vs. ISU Bars vs. SEMO Bars vs. ASU Beam vs. ISU Beam vs. Cent Adrianne Perry (17) Vault vs. SEMO Vault at Ill Beam vs. UIC Beam vs. SEMO Beam at Ill Beam Cat Clas Bars vs. Cent Bars at Ill Perry Cont. Floor vs. ASU Floor Big AA Big AA vs. OU AA Cat Clas AA vs. ISU AA vs. SEMO AA at Ill AA vs. ASU Sarah Shire (19) Vault vs. BGSU Vault vs. ISU Vault vs. Cent Vault vs. OU Vault vs. ASU Shire Cont. Bars vs. UIC Beam vs. BGSU Beam vs. Cent Beam vs. OU Beam Cat Clas Floor vs. BGSU Floor vs. ISU Floor at Neb Floor vs. UIC Floor vs. Cent Floor vs. SEMO AA vs. BGSU AA vs. UIC AA vs. Cent Lauren Stephenson (1) Vault vs. UIC 9.800

5 Page 5 Tigers in the National Rankings: RQS Vault Uneven Bars: Sarah Shire: 27th Alicia Hatcher: 35th Adrianne Perry: 38th Adrianne Perry: 75th Balance Beam: Adrianne Perry: 35th Alicia Hatcher: 49th All-Around: Adrianne Perry: 16th Sarah Shire: 36th Ashley Khederian: 54th Floor Exercise: Sarah Shire: 30th Adrianne Perry: 35th Vault: Sarah Shire: 3rd Adrianne Perry: 4th Alex Gold: 24th Ashley Khederian: 28th Tigers in the SC Rankings: RQS Balance Beam: Adrianne Perry: 8th Alicia Hatcher: 13th Sarah Shire: 29th Brooke Boehmer: 31st All-Around: Adrianne Perry: 4th Sarah Shire: 7th Ashley Khederian: 13th Rankings Uneven Bars: Alicia Hatcher: 6th Adrianne Perry: 13th Sarah Shire: 37th Becky Scholle: 38th Floor Exercise: Sarah Shire: 7th Adrianne Perry: 9th Ashley Khederian: 23rd South Central Region Rankings Team RQS High 1 Oklahoma SC 2 Arkansas SC 3 Arizona SC 4 Nebraska SC 5 Missouri SC 6 Arizona State SC 7Illinois SC 8 S.E. Missouri SC 9 N. Illinois SC 10 UIC SC 11 TWU SC 12 Illinois St SC *Rankings will be sorted by RQS from now until the end of the 2008 season. Mizzou Rank Week-by-Week Date Rank RQS Dec. 1 16th n/a Jan th n/a Jan th n/a Jan th n/a Feb. 4 14th n/a Feb th n/a Feb. 18 n/a 13th Feb. 25 n/a 14th March 3 n/a 15th March 10 n/a 16th March 17 n/a 16th March 24 n/a 18th March 31 n/a 18th April Big 12 All-Around Champion, Adrianne Perry Big 12 Conference Rankings Team RQS. High 1. Oklahoma Nebraska Missouri Iowa State Big 12 Conference Accolades Gymnast Honor 1. Alicia Hatcher Event Spec. All-Big 12-Bars All-Big 12 Champ. Team-Bars 2. Sarah Shire Big 12 Newcomer of the Year GOW (2/12) All-Big 12-Vault All-Big 12 Champ. Team (BB) 3. Adrianne Perry GOW (3/4) Big 12 Champion (AA, FX) All-Big 12 (Bars, Vault) All-Big 12 Champ Team (UB, BB, FX)

6 2008 Recaps Page 6 Meet #1: at Bowling Green BOWLING Green, Ohio - The 2008 Missouri Gymnastics squad opened its season with a victory at the Eppler Complex in Bowling Green, Ohio. The Tigers were led by Utah transfer Sarah Shire (Hartsburg, Mo.) who scored a in the all-around competition. With the win, the Tigers move to 1-0 on the season. The Tigers score of was the second best in the Big 12 Conference on the opening weekend, besting both Nebraska and Iowa State. Oklahoma scored a , the only score to top the Tigers in the opening weekend. The score of is the second highest opening day score in school history. The Tigers posted a to kick off the 2004 season. The Tigers featured two gymnasts that posted scores in the all-around competition, both Shire and Khederian. Shire won the all-around with a with Khederian finishing right behind her in second with a This meet marks the first time that Shire has competed as an all-arounder. Meet #2: Iowa State Pink Out COLUMBIA, Mo. - The 2008 Missouri Gymnastics team opened its 2008 Big 12 season with a win over the Iowa State Cyclones by a score of The win over the Cyclones is the first for the Tigers in the regular season since After sitting out on vault against Bowling Green, junior Adrianne Perry (Columbia, Mo.) won the all-around in her first time this season, posting a score of ,766 fans were on hand to witness the meet, ranking third all time in non-cat Classic events. It was also the second highest attended Pink Out meet in its four year history. Junior Alicia Hatcher claimed event titles on both bars and beam while Shire earned the floor title. Meet #3: at Nebraska LINCOLN, Neb. - In what was a pivotal match up for the No. 14 Missouri Gymnastics squad, the Tigers were able to post a season high score of , but fell just short of topping the Huskers as the Tigers were edged The Tigers featured three all-arounders in the event, all of which topped the plateau. Junior Adrianne Perry (Columbia, Mo.) led the Tigers with a Perry and Shire, the hometown products, continued to shine on floor. Shire posted a while Perry finished just behind her with a Shire s score of is a new career high, topping her previous best of 9.875, a score she tallied in each of the first two meets this season. In all, the Tigers posted a on floor, keeping them close to the Huskers. The Tigers continued their personal record setting as sophomore Brooke Boehmer (Overland Park, Kan.) tallied a on beam. Boehmer, who spent last season recovering from an ACL injury has been a bright point in the beam lineup this season. Hatcher tallied her best mark on beam this season with a Meet #4: UIC COLUMBIA, Mo. - Beginning a two-meet home stand, the No. 15 Tiger Gymnastics team started it off by topping Illinois-Chicago Sophomore Sarah Shire (Columbia, Mo.) earned her second all-around crown of the season as she notched a Her score was also a season high and career high in the all-around. The Tigers led after the first rotation. Next up, the Tigers headed to the bars, an event that has plagued the Tigers throughout the 2008 season. Putting up a season high , the Tigers seemed to put their bar woes behind them. Khederian started the Tigers off on the right foot by scoring a just shy of her season high of Shire seems to be hitting her stride on bars during the last two meets. Posting a 9.875, Shire topped her career high, set last week at Nebraska. Junior Alicia Hatcher (Blue Springs, Mo.), last weeks Big 12 Event Specialist of the Week, tallied a 9.850, placing her second on the event, behind only Shire. Perry took third place, posting a Anchoring beam, Perry posted a season high 9.900, giving the Tigers a on beam. The was just.100 shy of the season high mark set the previous week at Nebraska. Meet #5: Centenary COLUMBIA, Mo. - The No. 14 Tiger Gymnastics squad posted its season best score for the third consecutive meet, putting up a , topping the previous high set last week versus UIC. With the score, the Tigers won the second annual W.G. Grinders Beauty and the Beast over the Centenary Ladies Sophomore Sarah Shire (Columbia, Mo.) set a personal record as well, putting up a in the all-around, winning it handily. 6,308 fans packed the Hearnes center to watch the Tigers top the Ladies. The attendance set the Beauty and the Beast mark and ranks 12th in Tiger Gymnastics history. The uneven bars were the high point of the meet for the Tigers. After struggling mightily in the first few meets of the season, the Tigers put it together for a season high on bars, just missing the school record with a score of The record is set a Texas Women s College in Every Tiger in the lineup posted at least a while Perry (Columbia, Mo.) posted a 9.925, a new personal record.

7 Page 7 Five of the six Tigers in the lineup either tied or set career bests on bars. Senior Ashley Khederian (Carlisle, Mass.) and sophomore Liz Straatmann (Washington, Mo.) both set highs with a and 9.875, respectively. Becky Scholle (Chesterfield, Mo.) and Alicia Hatcher (Blue Springs, Mo.) both tied their career high marks of and 9.875, respectively. Meet #6: at SEMO CAPE Girardeau, Mo. - In its final tune-up before a pivotal showdown with Oklahoma, the No. 14 Missouri Gymnastics squad moved its winning streak to three by topping the SEMO Redhawks The Tigers extended the series lead to 21-6 all time against SEMO. Junior all-arounder Adrianne Perry (Columbia, Mo.) had one of her best meets of the season, taking home the all-around title with a The improving Redhawks put up a good fight against the Tigers, but in the end they did not have enough to overcome some big Tiger scores on vault, beam and floor. The Tigers won every event in the meet, highlighted by Perry s three event titles. Senior Ashley Khederian (Carlisle, Mass.) also had a big meet, finishing second in the all-around with a Meet #7: Oklahoma COLUMBIA, Mo. - Despite another great effort from the entire team, the No. 13 Tigers dropped to 5-2 on the season as they lost to No. 6 Oklahoma The Tigers score was the second highest of the season and the Tigers came within a just a few steps of topping the sixth-ranked team in the nation. The high point of the meet came as the all-around scores were announced. With No. 3 Kiara Redmond-Sturms competing for the Sooners, two Tigers bested one of the best all-arounders in the nation. Junior Adrianne Perry (Columbia, Mo.) won the meet title, scoring a while sophomore Sarah Shire (Columbia, Mo.) finished just behind her with a Redmond-Sturms finished with a Shire claimed the vault and beam titles, giving her 17 on the season, placing her second in the Big 12 behind only Redmond-Sturms. The Tigers trailed , but made up some ground in a hurry, pulling together for their best beam score of the season, a All five Tigers counted in the final scores put up a or better, led by Shire s Perry and Hatcher both posted a score of The Tigers trailed by just.200 heading into the final rotation, but fell just short on floor, tallying a Perry posted a 9.875, leading the Tigers on the event. Shire, ranked 8th on floor, kept true to her reputation as well, posting a Meet #8: Cat Classic 2008 Recaps COLUMBIA, Mo. - The No. 14 Tiger Gymnastics squad posted a as the beat both No. 22 Ohio State and Cal-Berkeley, but could not catch up with No. 4 Michigan at the 28th annual Cat Classic. The Tigers placed second on the night while junior all-arounder Adrianne Perry (Columbia, Mo.) won her third consecutive all-around title, registering a , just ahead of Michigan s Sarah Curtis who tallied a Perry managed to take home the title despite not winning any other event, showing her consistency on the night. Ohio State finished third with a while Cal finished last with a With the second place finish, the Tigers move to 7-3 on the season, with all three of their losses coming to top-15 teams, and two to top six-teams. 2,851 fans packed the Hearnes Center for the 28th installment of one of the finest Gymnastics meets in the nation. The Tigers posted a on vault, their highest score on any event of the evening. Perry finished second on the event. Sophomore Sarah Shire (Columbia, Mo.) finished fourth on the event with a Meet #9: at Illinois CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - In a meet that came down to score inquiries, the No. 15 Missouri Gymnastics squad took No. 28 Illinois best shot of the season, but overcame and topped the Illini Junior Adrianne Perry (Columbia, Mo.) tallied a in the all-around, tying her for the title with Illinois freshman Allison Buckley. The title was her fourth consecutive title. Proving that Perry is indeed one of the top gymnasts in the nation, Buckley s score was the second highest on school history, and she could still not overcome Perry. Separated by just.125, the Tigers headed to the beam while the Illini made their way to floor, looking to preserve their lead in the fourth and final rotation. The Illini tallied a , but the Tigers posted a , keeping the Illini at bay. Two scores were inquired by the Tigers and both were raised, sealing the win for Mizzou. Perry notched a 9.875, a score that the Tigers really needed to pull away. Perry, arguably the Tigers best gymnast over the past five weeks, continued to raise the bar as she tallied a on vault to win the event. Perry claimed both event titles in the first two rotations. Another bright point was sophomore Liz Straatmann (Washington, Mo.) earning a career high on beam in an exhibition role.

8 2008 Recaps Page 8 Meet #10: at Oregon State CORVALLIS, Ore. - The No. 16 Missouri Gymnastics squad finished third at the Salbasgeon Suites Invitational as it posted a , finishing behind host-school, eighth-ranked Oregon State and 19th- ranked Boise State. Junior all-arounder Adrianne Perry (Columbia, Mo.) and senior Ashley Khederian (Carlisle, Mass.) finished fourth and fifth, respectively, in the all-around. Perry finished with a , while Khederian scored a , her second highest all-around score of the season. The Tigers began the quad-meet competing on the floor, starting with sophomore Danielle Guider (Nutley, N.J.). Guider, fresh off of her best meet of the season at Illinois, got things started with a on the floor, tying her third-highest mark of the season. Freshman Alex Gold (Plano, Texas) followed Guider s lead by posting a 9.750, also her third highest score of the season. The Tigers last three competitors on floor completed a solid rotation, highlighted by Perry, who tallied a Both Khederian and Sarah Shire (Columbia, Mo.) closed with a 9.800, giving the Tigers their fourth best floor score of the season at Meet #11:Arizona State COLUMBIA, Mo. - Honoring four seniors in their final home meet of 2008, the No. 16 Missouri Gymnastics squad sent the seniors off in style as they topped No. 23 Arizona State at the Hearnes Center. Junior Adrianne Perry (Columbia, Mo.) took home her fifth all-around crown in the last six meets and her sixth this season as she tallied a , highlighted by a career best on floor. The Tigers finish 10-5 in the regular season as they prepare for the Big 12 Championships next weekend. The highlight of the event was senior Julie Abaray (Cincinnati, Ohio) who earned her way back into the lineup after battling through knee injuries all season. In her final performance in front of the home-town crowd, Abaray posted a 9.800, finishing third on the team. Heading to floor, the Tigers lead the Sun Devils , but Arizona St. posted a to make it interesting. The Tigers trailed heading into their final routine, but Perry posted a 9.925, a career best on floor to seal the victory for the Tigers. Perry needed a to tie the Sun Devils, but her was more than enough to close the meet. Khederian posted a in her final performance on the Hearnes Center floor, helping the Tigers to a Meet #12: Big 12 Championshsip NORMAN, Okla. - The No. 18 Missouri Gymnastics team tied its highest finish ever at the Big 12 Championships as they took home third place wit ha No. 9 Oklahoma took home the title with a while Iowa State finished second with a with Nebraska placing fourth with a Junior Adrianne Perry (Columbia, Mo.) won the Big 12 title in the allaround as she tallied a With the title, Perry becomes the first Tiger in program history to win the Big 12 title in the allaround and becomes the fourth Tiger to earn the title of Big 12 Champion. Perry also earned that title on floor as well, finishing with a After the meet, the 2008 Big 12 accolades were announced. Sophomore Sarah Shire (Columbia, Mo.) collected the trophy for Big 12 Newcomer of the Year, the third Tiger to earn the award. Teammate Adrianne Perry took home the honor in 2006 while Alisha Robinson received the award in Several Tigers also took home All-Big 12 Championship Team honors. Perry and Alicia Hatcher (Blue Springs, Mo.) each earned a spot on the bars team for the second consecutive season. Shire and Perry each earned a spot on the beam team while Perry finished first on floor. The Tigers, just like their last quad-meet, opened the Championship on floor. The Tigers got things started by tallying a Sophomore Danielle Guider (Nutley, N.J.), who had been in the lead-off spot on floor all season, was moved down to the third spot where she responded with a 9.750, tying her second highest score of the season. Senior Ashley Khederian (Carlisle, Mass.) followed that by posting a solid The real fire works came in the final two routines as Shire and Perry both posted huge scores to round out the floor rotation. Shire tallied a while Perry hit 9.900, giving her two consecutive meets with a or better. The Tigers took a.100 lead over Iowa State into the final rotation, the balance beam. The Tigers were up by.200 over the Sooners, who were in third place. Brooke Boehmer (Overland Park, Kan.) was first up on the beam. She tallied a to keep the Tigers on pace. Boehmer is still one of only two Tigers to not fall on beam all season. The other, Hatcher, posted a on the event. Both Shire and Perry closed beam with a 9.850, but it was not enough to overcome two low scores on beam. The low beam score resulted in both Iowa State and Oklahoma passing the Tigers, placing them third.

9 Page 9 Scouting No. 6 Stanford National Ranking RQS High Team Vault Bars Beam Floor Last Meeting: 2002 NCAA Central Regional L, (Stanford leads all-time series 1-0) Scouting No. 26 Kent St. National Ranking RQS High Team Vault Bars Beam Floor Last Meeting: 2000 Gymnastics Xtreme W (Missouri Leads all-time series 1-0) Scouting the Competition Scouting No. 7 LSU National Ranking RQS High Team Vault Bars Beam Floor Last Meeting: 2006 Super Six L, (LSU Leads all-time series 21-5) Scouting No. 33 Ohio State National Ranking RQS High Team Vault Bars Beam Floor Last Meeting: 2008 Cat Classic W (Ohio State leads all-time series 5-1) Scouting No. 20 Kentucky National Ranking RQS High Team Vault Bars Beam Floor Last Meeting: 2004 Cat Classic W (MU Leads all-time series 10-1) All-Around and Individual Event Specialists All-Around Competitors 1.Jolene Worley, Eastern Michigan 2.Andrea De la Garza, Central Michigan 3.Courtney Lesson, Western Michigan 4.Breanne Guy, Bowling Green 5.Katie Simon, Central Michigan Alt. Erin Grigg, Eastern Michigan Individual Event Specialists Vault Jacque Bernhardt, Bowling Green Alt. Meredith Smith, Centenary Uneven Bars Vanessa Rodriguez, Central Michigan Alt. Jenna D Alie, Central Michigan Balance Beam Laura Loy, Centenary (Louisiana) Alt. Danielle Espinoza, Central Michigan Floor Exercise Danielle Espinoza, Central Michigan Alt. Marisa Schneider, Centenary (Louisiana) Mizzou s Alicia Hatcher looks to qualify for NCAA Nationals at the Central Regional

10 Mizzou Regional History Minnesota Nebraska Missouri Iowa State Iowa Kansas Missouri Minnesota Iowa Nebraska Oklahoma State Nebraska Oklahoma Missouri New Mexico Nebraska Minnesota Michigan State Illinois Missouri Southern Illinois Indiana Alabama Southern Illinois Missouri Illinois Illinois State Indiana State Alabama Louisiana State Michigan State Illinois Illinois State Missouri Louisiana State Alabama Michigan State Indiana State Missouri Southern Illinois Alabama Louisiana State Michigan State Auburn Minnesota Missouri Illinois Alabama Louisiana State Minnesota Auburn Illinois SE Missouri State Missouri Alabama Auburn Louisiana State SE Missouri State Northern Illinois Missouri Iowa Alabama Michigan Auburn Missouri Iowa SE Missouri State Louisiana State Alabama Louisiana State Auburn Michigan Michigan State Missouri SE Missouri State Alabama Louisiana State Michigan Auburn Minnesota Missouri Iowa State Page Nebraska LSU Arizona State Arizona Ill.-Chicago Missouri Stanford Georgia Denver Missouri Air Force Utah State UCLA Iowa Oregon State Arizona Missouri Illinois-Chicago Georgia Michigan Iowa State Penn State Missouri New Hampshire Michigan Nebraska Missouri Arizona Arizona State Illinois Georiga Nebraska Missouri North Carolina North Carolina State West Virginia Utah Nebraska Missouri California Washington Sacramento State

11 Page 11 NCAA Regional Records Appearances 20 last, 2007 Berkeley, Cal. Highest Finish 1st Ames, Iowa Lowest Finish 7th 1990 Corvallis, Ore. Highest Overall Score Athens, Ga. Highest Hosting Score Columbia, Mo. Highest Road Score Athens, Ga. Regional Champions Gayle Anderson Vault Maria Christensen Bars Maria Christensen Beam Maria Christensen Floor Maria Christensen All-Around Sherry Towle Beam Sherry Towle Beam Alisha Robinson All-Around Alisha Robinson Vault NCAA National Qualifiers Maria Christensen All-Around Lisa Hyberger All-Around RQS 1982 Julie Dorn All-Around Julie Dorn All-Around Kellie Copeland All-Around Alisha Robinson All-Around Alisha Robinson All-Around Alisha Robinson All-Around Adrianne Perry All-Around Adrianne Perry All-Around NCAA National Results Maria Christensen All-Around Lisa Hyberger 30th All-Around Julie Dorn 47th All-Around Julie Dorn 13th All-Around Julie Dorn 6th Vault All-American P Julie Dorn 4th Floor All-American Kellie Copeland All-Around Alisha Robinson 7th Vault All-American Alisha Robinson All-Around P Alisha Robinson 5th Vault All-American Adrianne Perry All-Around Adrainne Perry 22nd All-Around Individual Regional Qualifiers Kim Leslie 1987 Mary Houghton 1987 Julie Dorn 1989 Kristi Leslie 1989 Kristi Leslie 1990 Julie Dorn 1990 Jennifer Sand 1990 Chrissy Harkey 1996 Shannon Brown 1998 Shannon Brown 1999 Jessica Haag 1999 Amanda Peterson 1999 Leah Gremaud 2001 Alina Hamm 2001 Lindsay Davis 2001 Andrea Nervig 2001 Mizzou Regional History Regional Records Appearances 19 last, 2006 Athens, Ga. Highest Finish 1st 1981 Ames, Iowa Lowest Finish 7th 1990 Corvallis, Ore. Highest Overall Score Athens, Ga. Highest Hosting Score Columbia, Mo. Highest Road Score Athens, Ga. Team Records Score Athens, Ga. Vault State College, Pa. Bars Denver, Colo. Beam State College, Pa. Floor Columbia, Mo. Individual AA Alisha Robinson 2002 Denver, Colo. Vault _ Rachel Bridges 2004 State College, Pa. Bars _ Jodie Heinicka 2006 Athens, Ga _ Alisha Robinson 2002 Denver, Colo. Beam _ _ Lauren Schwartzman 2004 State College, Pa. Floor _ _ Lauren Schwartzman 2005 Lincoln, Neb _ Alisha Robinson 2002 Denver, Colo.

12 Mizzou Team Records Vault at Texas Woman s Invite 3/12/ at Nebraska 1/31/ at Northeast Regional 4/3/ v. Arkansas 2/13/ at Cat Classic 2/6/ at Arkansas 3/13/ at Mizzou Invitational 3/6/ at Michigan 3/16/ at Brigham Young 2/23/ at Big 12 Championship 3/20/ at Corvette Cup 3/2/ at Iowa State 3/7/ v. Southeast Missouri State 2/20/00 Uneven Bars at Texas Woman s Invite 3/12/ v. Illinois 2/11/ v. Arkansas 2/13/ at Cat Classic 2/6/ at Utah State/Boise State 2/20/ v. Oklahoma 2/29/ at Pittsburgh 3/3/ v. Ball State 2/17/ at Texas Woman s 3/20/ v. Southeast Missouri State 2/20/ at Big 12 Championship 3/29/ at Cat Classic 2/24/ v. Iowa State 3/17/02 Team Totals at Texas Woman s Invite 3/12/ at Cat Classic 2/6/ at Mizzou Invitational 3/6/ v. Oklahoma 2/29/ at Big 12 Championship 3/29/ at Michigan 3/16/ v. Arkansas 2/13/ v. Southeast Missouri State 1/25/ v. Illinois State 1/30/ at Big 12 Championship 3/20/ at Utah State/Boise State 2/20/ v. Illinois 2/11/ at Arkansas 3/13/ at New Hampshire 1/16/04 Balance Beam v. Illinois 2/11/ v. Oklahoma 2/29/ at Mizzou Invitational 3/6/ v. Southeast Missouri State 1/25/ at Cat Classic 2/6/ at Utah State/Boise State 2/20/ at Cat Classic 2/24/ at Centenary 1/20/ v. Illinois State 1/30/ Cat Classic 2/23/ at Nebraska 1/29/ at Texas Woman s Invite 3/12/ at Cat Classic 2/7/ at Arkansas 3/14/ at Nebraska 1/29/03 Floor Exercise Page at Cat Classic 2/6/ at Mizzou Invitational 3/6/ at Texas Woman s Invite 3/12/ v. Southeast Missouri State 1/25/ v. Oklahoma 2/29/ v. Iowa State 3/17/ at Michigan 3/16/ v. Iowa State 1/11/ at Corvette Cup 3/2/ v. Southeast Missouri State 3/4/ at Tiger Showdown 2/22/ at Brigham Young 3/9/ at Big 12 Championship 3/29/ at South Central Regional 4/12/03

13 Page 13 Vault Alisha Robinson at Nebraska 1/31/ Alisha Robinson v. Arkansas 2/13/ Alisha Robinson at Arkansas 3/13/ Alisha Robinson at TWU Invite 3/12/ Alisha Robinson at Big 12 Championship 3/20/ Adrianne Perry vs. SEMO 2/9/ Alisha Robinson at Big 12 Championship 3/26/ Alisha Robinson at Cat Classic 2/26/ Alisha Robinson at Cat Classic 2/6/ Alisha Robinson at BYU 2/23/ Alisha Robinson at Mizzou Invite 3/6/ Rachel Bridges at NE Regional 4/3/ Alisha Robinson at Bowling Green 1/13/ Alisha Robinson v. Ball State 2/17/ Jessica Haag at Big 12 Championship 3/27/99 Uneven Bars Alisha Robinson v. Illinois 2/11/ Jodie Heinicka at Cat Classic 2/6/ Alisha Robinson at TWU Invite 3/12/ Jodie Heinicka v. SEMO 3/17/ Jodie Heinicka v. Iowa State 2/3/ Jodie Heinicka at Nebraska 1/29/ Jodie Heinicka at Centenary 1/20/ Jodie Heinicka v. Arkansas 1/13/ Andrea Nervig v. Iowa State 1/11/ Alisha Robinson at USU/BSU 2/20/ Alisha Robinson v. Ball State 2/17/ Shannon Brown at Corvette Cup 3/5/ Adrianne Perry vs. Centenary 2/8/ Jodie Heinicka at Southeast Regional 4/8/ Andrea Nervig v. SE Missouri State 1/25/ Andrea Nervig at Nebraska 1/31/ Alisha Robinson v. Arkansas 2/13/ Andrea Nervig v. Oklahoma 2/29/ Jodie Heinicka at TWU Invite 3/12/ Lindsay Davis v. Nebraska 1/24/ Alisha Robinson at Cat Classic 2/7/ Andrea Nervig at Big 12 Championship 3/29/ Alisha Robinson at Big 12 Championship 3/29/ Alisha Robinson at Bowling Green 1/13/ Alisha Robinson v. SE Missouri State 1/20/ Andrea Nervig v. Ball State 2/17/ Alisha Robinson at Corvette Cup 3/2/ Andrea Nervig v. Iowa State 3/17/ Shannon Brown at Big 12 Championship 3/18/ Shannon Brown at Cat Classic 2/5/ Shannon Brown v. Nebraska 1/29/99 Mizzou Individual Records Balance Beam _ Lauren Schwartzman v. Iowa State 1/11/ _ Lauren Schwartzman at TWU Invite 3/12/ Lauren Schwartzman v. Illinois 2/11/ Lauren Schwartzman at Cat Classic 2/24/ Lauren Schwartzman v. Iowa State 2/3/ Lauren Schwartzman at Centenary 1/20/ Lauren Schwartzman v. Oklahoma 2/29/ Lauren Schwartzman v. SEMO 3/17/ Lauren Schwartzman v. Centenary 3/3/ Lauren Schwartzman v. Air Force/SEMO 3/20/ Lauren Schwartzman at Arkansas 3/13/ Lauren Schwartzman at NE Regional 4/3/ Lauren Schwartzman at Big 12 Championship _ 3/20/ Lauren Schwartzman v. Arkansas 2/13/ Lauren Schwartzman at Cat Classic 2/6/ Lauren Schwartzman at Cat Classic 2/7/ Alisha Robinson at Mizzou Invite 3/6/ Rachael Dombart at Big 12 Championship 3/23/ Leah Gremaud at Corvette Cup 3/2/ Leah Gremaud at Cat Classic 2/1/ Leah Gremaud at Cat Classic 2/3/ Shannon Brown at Big 12 Championship 3/27/ Adrianne Perry at Arkansas 3/23/ Julie Abaray at Cat Classic 2/23/07 Floor Exercise Alisha Robinson at Cat Classic 2/6/ Lauren Schwartzman at Cat Classic 2/6/ Lauren Schwartzman v. SEMO 3/4/ Alisha Robinson v. Illinois 2/11/ Alisha Robinson at BYU 2/23/ Lauren Schwartzman v. Oklahoma 2/29/ Alisha Robinson at Mizzou Invite 3/6/ Andrea Nervig at Mizzou Invite 3/6/ Alisha Robinson at Big 12 Championship 3/29/ Alisha Robinson at Cat Classic 2/2/ Alisha Robinson v. Iowa State 3/17/ Alisha Robinson v. Southeast Missouri State 3/4/ Lauren Schwartzman at Cat Classic 2/25/ Lauren Schwartzman v. Iowa State 1/11/ Andrea Nervig v. Oklahoma 2/29/ Rachel Bridges at Mizzou Invite 3/6/ Alisha Robinson at TWU Invite 3/12/ L. Schwartzman at Big 12 Championship 3/29/ Laura Forbes at Corvette Cup 3/4/ Alisha Robinson at Cat Classic 2/1/ Adrianne Perry at Michigan 3/16/ Adrianne Perry vs. Arizona St. 3/21/ Sarah Shire vs. Centenary 2/8/08 All-Around Kim Leslie at Cat Classic 2/3/ _ Alisha Robinson at Cat Classic 2/6/ _ Alisha Robinson at Mizzou Invite 3/6/ _ Alisha Robinson at TWU Invite 3/12/ _ Alisha Robinson at Bowling Green 1/13/ _ Alisha Robinson at Big 12 Championship 3/29/ _ Adrainne Perry at Michigan 3/16/ _Sarah Shire vs. Centenary 2/8/ _ Alisha Robinson v. Oklahoma 2/29/ _Adrainne Perry at Nebraska 1/25/ _ Lindsay Davis v. Illinois State 1/30/ _ Alisha Robinson at Arkansas 3/14/ _ Alisha Robinson at Corvette Cup 3/2/ _ Alisha Robinson at Iowa State 2/8/02

14 JULIE ABARAY Junior Cincinnati, Ohio 5-2 Queen City Gymnastics HONORS Two-time Academic All-Big 12 first team (2006, 2007) Two-time NACGC/W Scholar Athlete (2005, 2006) Varsity M Association Female Student-Athlete of the Year ( ) Career Highs Bars: (Centenary, 2007) Beam: (Cat Classic, 2007) Floor: (at Michigan, 2007) Senior (2008): Recovering from knee surgery, Abaray made her first appearance in the beam line up on Senior Night, tallying a exhibitioned on beam in front of a home-town crowd at Bowling Green and at the Cat Classic. Also made an appearance on beam at Illinois. Junior (2007): Julie Abaray has been in the bars, beam and floor lineup every meet this season for the Tigers... claimed eight event titles in her junior season, including four on beam, three on bars and one on floor tied for fifth on beam with a at the Big 12 Championship... scored a career-high on floor at Michigan to tie for second place won beam against Iowa with a picked up the bars and beam titles at the Cat Classic team competition, highlighted by a personal best on beam won the Cat Classic individual event bars title set personal marks on bars (9.850), beam (9.850) and floor (9.875) to take the event titles against Centenary tied for the beam crown against Illinois with a ranked 52nd on beam, 89th on bars and 93rd on floor nationally... named to the Academic All-Big 12 first team. Sophomore (2006): After recovering from injury, Abaray was a fixture in the bars and floor lineups the second half of the season... set a season-high on floor with a at the Southeast Regional to tie for 22nd place... was in the beam and floor lineups for the first time against Iowa and finished second on beam... scored a career high on bars at the Cat Classic team finals... qualified for the Cat Classic individual event finals on bars and finished in sixth place... was in an event lineup for the first time in 2006 against Oklahoma after recovering from an ankle sprain that sidelined her for the start of the season... recorded a on bars against the Sooners... named to the Academic All-Big 12 first team... named a Scholar Athlete by the National Association of Collegiate Gymnastics Coaches/Women (NACGC/W)... selected as the Varsity M Association Female Student-Athlete of the Year. Freshman (2005): In her first collegiate season, Abaray earned lineup spots on bars, beam and floor... recorded a on beam in her first collegiate meet against Iowa State to finish in fifth place... had a career day against Nebraska with career highs on floor with a and bars with a also finished seventh on beam at the meet with a set a career-high on beam with a to tie for third place against Illinois... finished second on beam at the Cat Classic after scoring a earned a third-place finish on beam with a as Missouri upset No. 15 Arkansas... had a solid day at the Big 12 Championships with a on beam and floor... named a NACGC/W Scholar Athlete. Club/High School: Abaray joined the Mizzou squad with a wealth of national experience... highlighted the 2004 season winning the Junior National and Regional beam titles... won the Ohio state all-around, vault, bars and beam championships, while finishing third on the floor exercise... finished fourth on beam at the 2002 Junior Nationals and won the Ohio state floor and all-around titles... in 2001, she finished fifth at nationals in the all-around and on beam, while also claiming the Ohio beam title... a three-time team captain at Queen City Gymnastics, she helped the team to a first-place Level 10 national team finish in trained under coaches Jennifer and Trevor O Hara and coach Jenny Cox... chose Mizzou over Michigan State, Ohio State and Kent State. Personal: Julie is the daughter of Terry and Janet Abaray... born Feb. 28, majoring in journalism... was the Sports Editor for the Lakota East High School Spark... was a 2004 National Hemingway finalist in sports writing Results Date Meet V UB BB FX AA 1/12 Bowling Green /18 Iowa State /25 Nebraska /1 Illinois-Chicago /8 Centenary /15 SEMO /22 Oklahoma /29 Cat Classic /8 Illinois /15 Oregon St /21 Arizona St /29 Big 12 s

15 Brooke Boehmer Sophomore Overland Park, Kan 5-4 Eagles Gymnastics HONORS NACGC/W Scholar Athlete (2007) Academic All-Big 12 First Team (2008) Career Highs Beam: (at Nebraska, 2008) Sophomore (2008): Has been a standout on beam all season long for the Tigers Has come on strong in the last several meets, posting a at SEMO and against Oklahoma and a against Centenary Holds a season and career high 9.850, set at Nebraska.... Is one of only two Tigers in the beam lineup to not fall this season. Freshman (2007): Boehmer suffered an ACL injury in Novemeber of last season, forcing her to sit out for her freshman season with the Tigers... NACGC/W Scholar Athlete. Prep: Boehmer came to Mizzou as a member of the 2006 Missouri Level 10 State Champion team... was the 2004 Level 10 state champion in the all-around, bars and floor... was the 2003 Level 9 state champion in the all-around, bars and floor...placed second on floor at the 003 Western Nationals Level 9 regional champion on the beam... trained with Eagles Gymnastics under coach Kim Fuchs. Personal: Brooke is the daughter of Douglas and Willa Boehmer... born January 30, intends to major in chemistry and pursue a career in the medical field Results Date Meet V UB BB FX AA 1/12 Bowling Green /18 Iowa State /25 Nebraska /1 Illinois-Chicago /8 Centenary /15 SEMO /22 Oklahoma /29 Cat Classic /8 Illinois /15 Oregon St /21 Arizona St /29 Big 12 s

16 Nikki Bowman Senior Virginia Beach, Va. 5-2 World Class Gymnastics HONORS Two-Time Academic All-Big 12 First Team (2007,08) Academic All Big 12 Second Team (2006) Career Highs Vault: (Nebraska, 2007) Bars: (Arkansas, 2006) Beam: (Twice in 2007) Floor: (Twice) Senior (2008): Has added valuable depth to the bars, beam and floor lineup...earned Academic All-Big 12 Honors for the third time in her career, landing on the first team for the second consecutive season. Junior (2007): A fixture in the vault lineup last season, Nikki Bowman also competed on beam in nine meets during her junior campaign... posted a on vault at the Big 12 Championship... tied her career high with a on beam against Michigan... stepped into the floor lineup and scored a against Iowa... tied her career high with a on vault against Nebraska... led off the beam lineup with a at Oklahoma... recorded a on vault against Illinois, Pittsburgh and the Cat Classic... named to the Academic All-Big 12 first team. Sophomore (2006): After an injury plagued freshman campaign, Bowman contributed to the bars and floor lineups as a sophomore... competed on vault for the first time all season at the Southeast Regional and scored a led off the floor lineup against Nebraska and scored a career-high competed on floor for the Tigers against Oklahoma and scored a recorded a career best on vault at the Cat Classic in exhibition... improved her career best on bars with a against Arkansas, a mark she previously set at the Super Six Challenge... named to the Academic All-Big 12 Conference second team. Freshman (2005): In her freshman season with Missouri, Bowman improved her skills on all events and provided depth for the Tigers while recovering from ankle surgery. Prep: Bowman was a member of the 2003 Junior National team finished 13th on vault with a at the Junior Olympic National Championships in 2003 was a Junior Olympic National alternate in placed second in the all-around, vault and floor at the Level 10 Region 7 Championships in highlighted as the Capital Cup beam champion as a Level 10 competitor in 2002 and a Level 9 competitor in crowned as the 2001 Level 10 National AAU uneven bars champion... competing for Frank W. Cox High School (Va.), helped the school to second-place state finishes at the state, regional and district championships in 2003 trained with World Class Gymnastics under coaches Tami Elliot Harrison and Jon Angle chose Missouri over Arizona and Illinois. Personal: Nikki is the daughter of Michael Bowman and Patricia Brassard born May 7, 1986 majoring in marketing Results Date Meet V UB BB FX AA 1/12 Bowling Green /18 Iowa State exh /25 Nebraska /1 Illinois-Chicago /8 Centenary exh /15 SEMO /22 Oklahoma /29 Cat Classic /8 Illinois /15 Oregon St /21 Arizona St /29 Big 12 s

17 Alex Gold Freshman Plano, Texas 5-3 Metroplex Career Highs Vault: (Bowling Green, 2008) Floor: (Centenary, 2008) Freshman (2008): One of the top vaulters on the Missouri roster as just a freshman Tallied a on vault at Bowling Green Has posted a or higher on vault in five of the Tigers six meets thus far Also starting to put up big scores on floor notching a and in the two meets prior to Oklahoma Posted a on floor versus OU. Prep: Trained at Metroplex under the direction of Larry McDonough qualified for the Junior Olympics in 2001, 2002 and 2006 Gold was Texas State level 10 champion on vault and second in the all-around in 2005 and third in the all around in 2007 career highs include a 9.85 on vault and a 9.75 on floor member of National Honors Society. Personal: Alex is the daughter of Nathan and Sharon Gold born in Plano, Texas on Sept. 19, 1988 plans to major in nursing chose Mizzou over Kentucky and Utah State Results Date Meet V UB BB FX AA 1/12 Bowling Green /18 Iowa State /25 Nebraska /1 Illinois-Chicago /8 Centenary /15 SEMO /22 Oklahoma /29 Cat Classic /8 Illinois /15 Oregon St /21 Arizona St /29 Big 12 s

18 Danielle Guider Sophomore Nutley, N.J. 5-2 US Gymnastics Development Center Career Highs Vault: (Bowling Green, 2008) Beam: (Twice, 2007) Floor: (Twice, 2007) Sophomore (2008): Has been in the lineup on three events for the Tigers in 2008, the vault, beam and floor Has been the leadoff on all three events throughout most of the season Recorded season highs of on vault, on beam and on floor at Illinois. Freshman (2007): Danielle Guider was a three event competitor for the Tigers in her freshman season... won her first career event title with a on floor against Iowa notched a personal best on vault at Michigan set a career mark on floor at Oklahoma with a in only her second time in the lineup tied her best on floor against Centenary recorded a career high on beam against Centenary and at Pittsburgh. Prep: Guider came to Mizzou as a two-time national qualifier... finished second on the vault, bars, floor and all-around at the 2005 New Jersey State Championship... was the Region VII champion on vault in was the New Jersey high school state champion on vault in 2003 and 2005 and took the all-around title in trained with US Gymnastics under coaches Joáo Riberio and Suzanne Soto... was named the Men of Essex Scholar Athlete and the New Jersey Scholar Athlete in chose Missouri over Michigan, Iowa State, Nebraska, Illinois, New Hampshire, Pittsburgh and Penn State. Personal: Danielle is the daughter of Dennis and Susan Guider... born July 25, intends to major in business Results Date Meet V UB BB FX AA 1/12 Bowling Green /18 Iowa State /25 Nebraska /1 Illinois-Chicago /8 Centenary /15 SEMO /22 Oklahoma /29 Cat Classic /8 Illinois /15 Oregon St /21 Arizona St /29 Big 12 s

19 Alicia Hatcher Junior Blue Springs, Mo. 5-6 GAGE HONORS Two Time All-Big 12 - Bars (2007, 2008) All Big 12 Championship Team - Bars (2008) Big 12 Event Specialist of the Week (Jan. 29) NACGC/W Scholar Athlete (2007) Two-Time Academic All-Big 12 First Team (2007,08) Career Highs Bars: (Six Times) Beam: (Oklahoma, 2007) Floor: (at Nebraska, 2008) Junior (2008): One of the best gymnasts the Tigers have to offer on both bars and beam Won Big 12 Event Specialist of the Week after her career meet at Nebraska Hatcher holds season highs of on both beam and bars and has broke her career high on floor, posting a against UIC... Has not fallen on beam in Sophomore (2007): A standard on bars and beam, Alicia Hatcher was one of Mizzou s most consistent competitors... claimed All-Big 12 honors on bars as she tied for fourth on the event with a at the Big 12 Championship... earned her first event title of the season as she notched a personal best on bars at Pittsburgh scored a career high on beam to tie for third at Oklahoma missed meets against SEMO and Centenary due to a sprained ankle finished second on bars with a against Iowa tied for second on bars (9.800) and third on beam (9.750) in the Cat Classic individual event finals tied for third on bars with a then team season high against Nebraska finished the season ranked tied for 65th on bars nationally... named to the Academic All-Big 12 first team. Freshman (2006): In a breakout freshman season, Hatcher tied for 60th on bars and 72nd on beam nationally... earned one bars title during the season... at the Southeast Regional, tied for eighth on bars with a tied her career-high on beam with a against SEMO to take third place... also recorded a on bars to tie for second... placed second on bars and tied for third on beam at Iowa... won her first career event title after with a on bars at SEMO to tie for first... tied her career-high on bars against Centenary with a earned top-four finishes on bars, beam and floor at the Cat Classic individual event finals... at the Cat Classic team finals, recorded a on beam to tie for third place and a on bars for fourth... recorded a on beam against Oklahoma to tie for fifth place... scored career-highs of on bars and on floor against Iowa State... placed fourth on beam with a career-high at Nebraska... recorded a on bars against at Centenary to finish second... named a National Association of Collegiate Gymnastics Coaches/Women Scholar Athlete. Prep: Hatcher joined the Tigers as a two-time Junior Olympic national qualifier... earned the 2002, 2003 and 2004 Region IV titles... was the 2001 National uneven bars champion... earned Missouri State Championship titles in 2002 and 2004 and placed third in finished second on the beam and ninth in the all-around at the 2004 Nationals... at the 2003 Nationals, won the beam title and placed second in the all-around.... finished third on beam and fourth on bars and all-around at the 2002 Nationals... trained at Great American Gymnastics Express with classmate Adrianne Perry under coaches Al Fong, Armine Barutyan-Fong and Rodney Gust... chose Missouri over LSU and Michigan. Personal: Alicia is the daughter of Ward Allen and Connie Serrano... born on Dec. 2, majoring in journalism Results Date Meet V UB BB FX AA 1/12 Bowling Green /18 Iowa State /25 Nebraska /1 Illinois-Chicago /8 Centenary /15 SEMO /22 Oklahoma /29 Cat Classic /8 Illinois /15 Oregon St /21 Arizona St

20 Ashley Khederian Senior Carlilse, Mass. 5-2 Walker Gymnastics HONORS Academic All-Big 12 First Team (2008) Career Highs Vault: (at Oklahoma 2005) Bars: (Centenary, 2008) Beam: (Illinois, 2005) Floor: (SEMO, 2005) AA: (Illinois, 2005) Senior (2008): Is the only Tiger in 2008 to compete in the all-around in every meet Has a season high in the all-around a set at Nebraska Earned runner up honors at SEMO with a Has eclipsed in the all-around three times in Has fallen only once despite competitng in every event at every meet. Junior (2007): Fully recovered from an injury plagued sophomore season, Ashley Khederian did not miss a meet in notched a season high on floor against Michigan and notched a on the event at Arkansas Scored a personal best on bars for the second meet in a row at the Cat Classic to tie for second posted a season high on vault against Arkansas after scoring a six times this season competed in the all-around for the first time since 2005 against SEMO and scored a Sophomore (2006): Hindered with injuries for much of 2006, Khederian was missed in the vault and floor lineups as a sophomore... scored a season-high on floor at Centenary... scored a season-high on bars at the Super Six Challenge. Freshman (2005): As one of two regular all-around competitors for Missouri, Khederian made an immediate impact on the Tiger program finished second in the all-around against Iowa State with a in her first collegiate meet earned first place finishes in the all-around against Centenary and Illinois scored on floor for fifth place against Nebraska.. against Illinois, recorded a on floor and season highs on bars and beam with and 9.850, respectively. Also recorded a career high in the all-around to finish first with a finished third at the Oklahoma Invitational after scoring a career high on vault earned second place finishes in the all-around with a and on vault with a and third place finishes with a on bars and a career high on floor against Southeast Missouri State helped the Tigers upset Arkansas after tying for third on vault with a and tying for fifth on floor and bars with a and 9.775, respectively tied for 14th on vault at the Big 12 Championships with a Prep: Khederian brought a wealth of experience to the Mizzou program a three-time Junior National qualifier, she finished 10th on vault in 2004 also highlighted the 2004 season finishing second on vault, third on bars, fifth on floor and sixth in the all-around at Regionals on the Massachusetts state level, she won the bar title, finished second on vault and fourth in the all-around swept for third-place on vault, bars, floor and the all-around at the 2003 Region XI Championship topped the 2003 Massachusetts state meet with a second-place finish on bars and floor, while finishing fourth on vault and in the all-around in 2002 finished fourth on vault and seventh in the all-around at Regionals placed second on bars, fourth on vault and floor and sixth in the allaround at the 2002 state meet trained with Walker Gymnastics under coaches Reggie Walker, Jr., Jessica Wilkey and Howie Shear chose Missouri over New Hampshire, Maryland and Denver. Personal: Ashley is the daughter of Russell and Jill Khederian born Jan. 25, 1986 majoring in business Results Date Meet V UB BB FX AA 1/12 Bowling Green /18 Iowa State /25 Nebraska /1 Illinois-Chicago /8 Centenary /15 SEMO /22 Oklahoma /29 Cat Classic /8 Illinois /15 Oregon St /21 Arizona St /29 Big 12 s

21 Lisa LaPerriere Freshman Macomb, Mich. 5-3 Olympia Gymnastics Career Highs Vault: (at Big 12 s, 2008) Freshman (2008): Another Tiger freshman with superior vaulting skills, LaPerriere hit a at Bowling Green and at home against Iowa State Figures to be a key member of the rotation all season long for the Tigers. Prep: Coached by Lori Koch and Deanna Sigler at Olympia Gymnastics Academy finished 10th on floor at the 2006 Level 10 National Championships two-time National Tops team member and a five-time Level 10 Regional qualifier LaPerriere was the 2003 Michigan state vault and bars champion at Level 10 and was the Level 9 national vault champion in 2000 was the 2000 United States Association of Independent Gymnastics Clubs national all-around and beam champion. Personal: Lisa was born on June 12, 1989 to Phil and Kathy LaPerriere... was the Summa Cum Laude of her graduation class member of National Honors Society chose Mizzou over Boise State, Denver, Kent State, Central Michigan and Western Michigan after gymnastics she aspires to be a physician assistant Results Date Meet V UB BB FX AA 1/12 Bowling Green /18 Iowa State /25 Nebraska /8 Centenary /15 SEMO /22 Oklahoma /29 Cat Classic /8 Illinois /15 Oregon St /21 Arizona St /29 Big 12 s 9.775

22 Adrianne Perry Junior Columbia, Mo. 5-3 GAGE HONORS Big 12 Champion - AA, FX (2008) All Big 12 Team - Vault (2008) All-Big 12 Championship Team - BB, FX, UB (2008) All Big 12 Vault, Bars, AA (2007) Academic All-Big 12 First Team (2008) Academic All-Big 12 Second Team (2007) Big 12 Newcomer of the Year (2006) Three-time Big 12 Gymnast of the Week (2007, 08) Career Highs Vault: (SEMO, 2007) Bars: (Centenary, 2008) Beam: (at Arkansas, 2007) Floor: (Arizona St., 2008) AA: (at Michigan, 2007) Junior (2008): One of the top returning gymnasts in the nation, Perry has not disappointed in 2008 Perry has won five all-around titles while posting a season high of against Nebraska Has tied her career high on bars this season tallying a and holds season highs of on every other event Topped third-ranked Kiara Redmond- Sturms against Oklahoma proving she is once again one of the best in the nation... Won four consecutive AA titles between SEMO and Illinois and has won five of the last six, including last week against Arizona St. Sophomore (2007): Entering only her junior season, Adrianne Perry already holds five of the top 15 all-around scores in Mizzou history... Competed as an individual at the 2007 NCAA Championships where she scored , finishing 22nd overall earned All-Big 12 honors on vault, bars and in the all-around with finishes of second, fourth and fourth, respectively... claimed 26 titles last season, including seven in the all-around, vault and floor, three on bars and two on beam named the Big 12 Gymnast of the Week on Feb. 13 and March 20 holds the Mizzou sophomore record on vault (9.950) and tied the mark in the all-around (39.550) set career highs on floor and in the all-around with scores of and , respectively, against Michigan to claim those as well as the vault title won the beam, floor and all-around crowns at Arkansas with a personal best on beam posted a career best on vault against SEMO and claimed the all-around, vault, beam and floor titles in the meet won consecutive bars titles against Pittsburgh and Iowa with a career high won the Cat Classic individual event vault and floor crowns set then career highs on vault with a and floor with a against Nebraska ranks 10th in the all-around, 14th on vault, 30th on beam, 33rd on floor and 55th on bars nationally.. named to the Academic All-Big 12 second team. Freshman (2006): Perry jumped onto the collegiate scene as a freshman en route to Big 12 Newcomer of the Year honors... ranked 24th nationally in the all-around, tied for 34th on beam, 55th on floor and 89th on bars... won 14 titles during the season, including eight in the all-around, three on floor, two on beam and one on vault... just missed All-America honors at the NCAA Championships after a ninth-place finish on beam with a recorded a in the all-around at nationals to tie for 14th and scored a on floor, which was good for 17th... finished sixth in the all-around at the Southeast Regional with a to qualify for the national championships... tied for fourth on vault with a at Regionals and also finished tied for 12th on beam with a and tied for 13th on floor with a scored a on vault at the Big 12 Championship to tie for sixth place... claimed the all-around title with a career-high tying against SEMO and finished second on vault and floor with 9.850s... won the all-around, beam and floor titles at Iowa... claimed all-around titles against Centenary and SEMO and tied Whitney Crater for the floor title at SEMO... won the Cat Classic all-around title with a career-high tying and finished second on beam... tied for first on floor at the Cat Classic team finals... won the all-around title with a at Illinois... against Iowa State, finished tied for third on beam with a set an all-around personal best for the third straight week with a at Nebraska to finish in second place... tied for first on beam with a career-high and recorded a on bars and a on floor at Nebraska... won the all-around title at Centenary while finishing first on vault and second on floor... won the all-around against Arkansas in her first all-around competition Prep: Perry looked to make an immediate impact on the Tiger program as an all-around competitor... member of the Junior Olympic National Team in 2002 and earned Missouri State Championship titles in 2002, 2004 and finished second, fourth and sixth in the allaround at Nationals in 2002, 2005 and 2004, respectively... placed fifth on bars, sixth in the all-around and seventh on floor at the 2004 Nationals... finished second at the 2002 Junior Olympic Nationals... was the Region IV champion in 2002, 2004 and has a balance beam skill named after her ( The Perry ) after she invented it and performed the skill at the 2005 Nationals... trained at Great American Gymnastics Express with fellow freshman Alicia Hatcher under coaches Al Fong, Armine Barutyan-Fong and Rodney Gust... chose Missouri over LSU and Michigan. Personal: Adrianne is the daughter of James Perry and Diane O Meara... born on Aug. 18, majoring in textile and apparel management 2008 Results Date Meet V UB BB FX AA 1/12 Bowling Green /18 Iowa State /25 Nebraska /1 Illinois-Chicago /8 Centenary /15 SEMO /22 Oklahoma /29 Cat Classic /8 Illinois /15 Oregon St /21 Arizona St /29 Big 12 s

23 Lisa Puccio Senior Kirkwood, Mo. 5-3 GymQuarters HONORS Academic All-Big 12 First Team (2008) Career Highs Bars: (at Penn St., 2005) Senior (2008): Puccio has found herself as a key member of the bars lineup in 2008 Tied her career high of against SEMO after earning her way back into the lineup after exhibitioning for two weeks... Posted a on senior night against Arizona St. in an exhibition role. Junior (2007): Poised to challenge for a spot in the bars lineup, Lisa Puccio suffered an ACL injury at Mizzou s Black and Gold meet in December... NACGC/W Scholar Athlete. Sophomore (2006): As a sophomore in 2006, Puccio helped add depth to the uneven bars lineup... competed on bars against Arkansas... exhibitioned on bars four times during the season. Freshman (2005): Puccio added depth in her freshman season for the Tigers on the uneven bars in was in the bars lineup the first two meets of the year against Iowa State and at the Arizona Invitational... scored a career-high on bars at the Penn State Invitational. Prep: Puccio joined the Mizzou program as a 2003 Junior National qualifier was a Western National qualifier in 2002 after winning the Region IV Level 9 floor and all-around titles highlighted as the Level 9 Missouri state bar and all-around champion in 2002 helped GymQuarters club team claim the 2002 Level 9 Missouri State Championship title and a second-place finish at the Region IV meet also helped GymQuarters win the Level 10 Missouri State Championship title in 2003 trained under coach Scott Cusimano chose Mizzou over West Virginia. Personal: Lisa is the daughter of Paul and Sharon Rottler born May 16, 1986 majoring in marketing Results Date Meet V UB BB FX AA 1/12 Bowling Green /18 Iowa State /25 Nebraska /1 Illinois-Chicago exh /8 Centenary exh /15 SEMO /22 Oklahoma /29 Cat Classic /8 Illinois /15 Oregon St exh /21 Arizona St /29 Big 12 s

24 Meghann Raub Sophomore West LaFayette, Ind. 5-6 Wright s American Gymnastics Career Highs Vault: exh. (Twice, 2008) Sophomore (2008): Earned an exhibition on vault this season against Oklahoma, the Cat Classic and at Illinois. Freshman (2007): Delayed by heel injury in preseason training, Meghann Raub continued training in the gym... earned an exhibition performance on vault against Nebraska. Prep: Raub joins the Tiger program as the 2004 Indiana vault champion... also finished second on vault and bars in qualified for the Region V championships as an all-around competitor... trained at Wright s American Gymnastics under Michelle Hart and Steve Elsberry... chose Missouri over West Virginia, Maryland, Western Michigan and Ohio State. Personal: Meghann is the daughter of Scot and Mary Raub... born on January 28, plans to major in biology with aspirations of becoming a Pediatric Dentist Results Date Meet V UB BB FX AA 1/12 Bowling Green /18 Iowa State /25 Nebraska /8 Centenary /15 SEMO /22 Oklahoma /29 Cat Classic /8 Illinois /15 Oregon St /21 Arizona St

25 Becky Scholle Sophomore Chesterfield, Mo. 5-1 GymQuarters Career Highs Vault: (at Bowling Green, 2008) Bars: (Centenary, 2008) Sophomore (2008): Tallied a career high on vault at Bowling Green, topping her previous best of set against Oklahoma last season Also a key member of the bars rotation, posting a career high mark of against Centenary Has competed on bars in every meet for the Tigers this season tying her career high of against Centenary. Freshman (2007): In her freshman campaign, Becky Scholle was a member of the bars lineup and competed five times on vault... won the first event title of her career after scoring a personal best on bars against SEMO also notched a on bars at Michigan to tie for second finished second on bars with a against Centenary posted a on bars at Pittsburgh in the vault lineup for the first time at Oklahoma, did not disappoint with a ranked tied for 86th on bars nationally... Earned NACGC/W Sholar Athlete honors in Prep: Scholle is an eight-time regional qualifier and three-time Junior Olympic National Qualifier...was the Missouri state bars champion in 2005 and 2006 and won the vault title in finished 10th on the bars at the Western Nationals in was a member of the Level 10 Missouri championship teams in 2002 and 2003 and the Level 10 Missouri Region IV championship team in trained with GymQuarters Gymnastics Center under coaches Scott and Debbie Cusimano and coach Greg Stephan... won the GymQuarters Award in 2005 and chose Missouri over Arkansas, Denver, Minnesota and Illinois-Champaign. Personal: Becky is the daughter of Richard and Vickie Scholle... born November 21, intends to major in physical therapy with aspirations of becoming a physical therapist Results Date Meet V UB BB FX AA 1/12 Bowling Green /18 Iowa State /25 Nebraska /1 Illinois-Chicago /8 Centenary /15 SEMO /22 Oklahoma /29 Cat Classic /8 Illinois /15 Oregon St /21 Arizona St

26 Sarah Shire Sophomore Columbia, Mo GAGE HONORS All Big 12 Team - Vault All Big 12 Championship Team - BB (2008) Big 12 Newcomer of the Year (2008) Three-time Big 12 Gymnast of the Week (2007, 08) Career Highs Vault: (Three Times 2008) Bars: (UIC, 2008) Beam: (Michigan, 2007) Floor: (Centenary, 2008) AA: (Centenary, 2008) Sophomore (2008): A highly touted transfer from Utah, Shire has competed in the all-around in every meet except SEMO Won the Big 12 Gymnast of the Week after putting up a against Centenary Posted a new career high of on the floor against Centenary Posted a new career high on bars as well at this season Has 18 event titles on the season. Freshman (Utah, 2007): Helped the Utes to runner-up honors at the 2007 NCAA Championships... tallied a 9.85 and on the vault and a and on the beam during the preliminary and super six rounds last season at the championship... specialized on beam and vault while at Utah, tallying career highs of in both events... along with her accomplishments in the gym, Shire earned NACGC/W Scholar Athlete honors in Prep: Four-time USA Championships qualifier, finished ninth in the all-around in has finished in the top 20 three times, 10th in 2002, 15th in 2003 and 16th in member of the USA National Team since placed second on vault and sixth in the all-around competiton at the 2004 Chunichi Cup in Japan... took home second on vault, third on beam and fourth on bars at the 2004 Cottbus Wolrd Cup in Germany... earned the bronze medal at the 2005 North American International Tri-Meet on both vault and bars... former level 9 and level 10 state and regional all-around champion... attended GAGE under the direction of Al Fong and Armine Barutyan-Fong... graduated from Archbishop O Hara High School... member of National Honors Society. Personal: Sarah Shire is the daughter of David and Robyn Shire... father is a high school teacher and coach... mother graduated from Missouri... born Jan. 19, Results Date Meet V UB BB FX AA 1/12 Bowling Green /18 Iowa State /25 Nebraska /1 Illinois-Chicago /8 Centenary /15 SEMO /22 Oklahoma /29 Cat Classic /8 Illinois /15 Oregon St /21 Arizona St /29 Big 12 s

27 Lauren Stephenson Freshman Kansas City, Mo. 5-3 Edge Gymnastics Career Highs Vault: (UIC, 2008) Floor: (Iowa St., 2008) Beam: (SEMO, 2008) Sophomore (2008): A freshman walk-on, Stephenson has just started to hit her stride Won the vault against UIC with a Got her shot on beam at SEMO posting a 9.700, a new career high... Claimed the vault title against UIC with a Prep: Trained at Edge Gymnastics in Kansas City, Mo. under the direction of John Laudie and Laura Habel finished second on vault and fourth on beam, floor and all-around at the State Championships qualified for level 10 nationals in 2005 after placing fourth in the floor exercise at regionals personal bests include on the vault and on the floor. Personal: Lauren is the daughter of Monte and Janice Stephenson born Oct. 21, 1988 in Kansas City, Mo. had a 4.0 GPA and was the recipient of the All American Scholar Award in 2006 and 2007 chose Mizzou over Iowa among others plans to major in Biochemistry Results Date Meet V UB BB FX AA 1/12 Bowling Green /18 Iowa State ex ex /25 Nebraska ex. -- 2/1 Illinois-Chicago /8 Centenary ex ex. -- 2/15 SEMO /22 Oklahoma /29 Cat Classic /8 Illinois /15 Oregon St /21 Arizona St /29 Big 12 s

28 Liz Straatmann Sophomore Washington, Mo. 5-1 GAGE HONORS Academic All-Big 12 First Team (2008) Career Highs Bars: (Centenary, 2008) Sophomore (2008): Worked her way into the bars lineup in each of the last eight meets Notched a new career high of against Centenary. Freshman (2007): Used her freshman campaign to recover from an ACL injury suffered in 2006, Straatmann provided depth for the bars and beam lineups... exhibitioned on bars three times last season... earned NACGC/W Scholar Athlete honors. Prep: Straatmann joined the Mizzou squad as a member of the 2004 and 2005 Level 10 State Championship teams... won the 2005 Missouri bars and beam titles and finished third in the all-around behind Tiger teammates Alicia Hatcher and Adrianne Perry... trained with Great American Gymnastics Express under coaches Al and Armine Fong and Rodney Gust... chose Mizzou over BYU and Arkansas. Personal: Liz is the daughter of Randy and Leann Straatmann... born May 6, undecided on major but wants to pursue a career as a veterinarian Results Date Meet V UB BB FX AA 1/12 Bowling Green /18 Iowa State ex /25 Nebraska /1 Illinois-Chicago /8 Centenary /15 SEMO /22 Oklahoma /29 Cat Classic /8 Illinois /15 Oregon St /21 Arizona St /29 Big 12 s

29 MU gymnasts work in the classroom recognized Nine members of the team landed on the Big 12 s All-Academic First Team BY JOSH WOLFF April 2, :58 p.m. CST COLUMBIA While the Missouri gymnastics team has had an impressive season and is ranked 18th in the nation, it has also flourished in the classroom. When the Big 12 Conference office announced the Academic All-Big 12 Gymnastics Team last week, nine Missouri gymnasts were named to the first team out of its 11 eligible team members. Freshmen and transfer gymnasts are not eligible to qualify for academic awards and first-team members must have a 3.20 GPA or higher. Seniors Julie Abaray, Nikki Bowman, Ashley Khederian and Lisa Puccio were named to the team, along with juniors Alicia Hatcher and Adrianne Perry and sophomores Brooke Boehmer, Becky Scholle and Liz Straatmann. Missouri gymnastics coach Rob Drass says the honors show the priorities of his team. It tells what our core values are on this team, Drass said. We are about young female athletes going to college and getting an education and being a great gymnastics team in the process. The academic accolades help emphasize the coaching staff s efforts to put the student part of the term student-athlete first. It definitely shows that I am really dedicated to school and not just gymnastics, Bowman said. It s expected of me to get good grades, but it s just nice to be rewarded and have people know. The gymnasts say the coaches are always reminding them the importance of academics with constant reminders about class attendance, going to professors office hours and making up schoolwork. The coaches get grade reports of the gymnasts and enforce mandatory study hours for them. Drass makes sure the gymnasts know the importance of academics immediately as freshmen. I feel like I get less of that now because I m a senior and (the coaches) have kind of pushed it, so it s already instilled in me, Bowman said. But I know when I was a freshman, they always made sure I got my academics done first before gymnastics. Bowman, who will be graduating in May with a bachelor s degree in marketing, has received a job with the Sports Museum of America in New York. She will be working in the marketing office with a focus on the women s sports section of the museum. She says the Missouri s athletics Total Person Program, a student-athlete development program, helped prepare her for the job interview and creating a résumé. The program also provides the gymnasts with tutors if they need one for a specific class. Great academics not only help the gymnasts obtain jobs after graduation, but also postgraduate scholarships. Abaray was one of 13 female athletes in the country to be awarded with the Women s Enhancement Postgraduate Scholarship designed for student-athletes who intend to work in intercollegiate athletics after graduate school. Tigers gymnast Amanda Pezzullo received the same scholarship last year, and Jodie Heinicka received the Big 12 Conference Dr. Prentice Gautt Postgraduate Scholarship and was named Big 12 Sportsperson of the Year in They are incredible people, they all work really hard in the gym and outside the gym in school, Drass said. I think they are incredibly dedicated and have great time management skills.

30 MU Gymnasts happy with LSU regional BY JOSH WOLFF/MISSOURIAN April 1, :34 p.m. CST COLUMBIA Qualifying for the NCAA National Championships in gymnastics requires a team to finish in the top two in its regional. When the Missouri gymnastics team found out it was in the same regional as No. 6 Stanford and No. 7 Louisiana State on Monday, it was not intimidated, but rather enthusiastic. We were excited because it was either that or Oregon State and that was a really long trip, so we weren t looking forward to going back there, senior Lisa Puccio said of an earlier meet at Oregon State. It s just another challenge that we have to face with two really good teams. The No. 18 Tigers competed at OSU Feb. 16 in four-team meet, but it was a physically draining trip to Corvallis, Ore. The Tigers regional on April 12 is hosted by Louisiana State in Baton Rouge, La., a more geographically convenient location. We re excited to go to LSU. It s one of the closer regionals, so travel is a little easier than going to some other places, Missouri coach Rob Drass said. We re a No. 3 seed, so we got a little work cut out for us and we are going to have to pull an upset. For the Tigers to advance to school s second NCAA Championship, they will need to beat two of the best teams in the country on and will likely need to eclipse their season high point total of probably by a wide margin. We really feel like we hold up well against a lot of teams, Drass said. We haven t had that lights-out meet yet, but hopefully we saved it for the Regional Championships. Senior Nikki Bowman says the competition should not affect the team. I think we ve competed against a lot of hard teams this year, Bowman said. We can definitely hang in there with the best of them, it s just that we have to go in there with confidence and not even think about that they have Olympians on (the other) teams, we just have to focus on ourselves. Drass says his team received a fortunate draw in the order of competition. Because there are six teams and only four events, two teams have byes during each of the six rotations. The Tigers were chosen to start the meet on the vault, an event they begin with in home meets, giving the team a more familiar feeling. They will also compete in last rotation on the floor exercise, which will give the team a better idea of the score they need to place in the top two. The other three teams competing at regionals will be Ohio State, whom the Tigers have already beaten this year, Kentucky and Kent State. While the meet will undoubtedly be intense, it will also allow some of the MU gymnasts to see friends from different schools. Many of Tigers gymnasts trained with gymnasts on the other regional teams. Drass says that seeing familiar faces is actually a help not a distraction. Gymnastics is a small little world so every time we go up against a team, there are friends and former teammates, Drass said. We know them, they know us. There is less of an awe factor or an Oh my, we re up against this team. It s a known entity and it s just our job to go out there and hit our routines. Puccio agrees with her coach. I don t think it s that much of a distraction, Puccio said. You know what you have to do during a meet, so you try not to let other teams distract you. But you want to make sure you wish (your friends) luck. The Tigers compete in the NCAA Central Regional April 12.

31 MU gymnastics hosts last home meet of the season For seniors like Ashley Khederian it marks an end to full career BY JOSH WOLFF March 20, :08 p.m. CST COLUMBIA In January of 2005, Missouri gymnast Ashley Khederian was a freshman. But she was a freshman with big expectations and came to MU as a decorated, three-time Junior National qualifier. While many gymnasts are a given year to acclimate themselves to gymnastics and become event specialists their freshman year, Khederian was an all-arounder the moment she stepped onto campus. The first meet of her collegiate gymnastics career was against Big 12 Conference rival Iowa State in Ames, Iowa. Undaunted competing in her first meet on the road, Khederian was the Tigers highest scorer and finished second in the allaround. She instantly became an integral part of the Tigers lineup and Missouri coach Rob Drass saw a bright future for her. She was just real consistent with what she did, Drass said. She was a bit of a deer in the headlights and just real nervous about everything. But when we got her in the meet setting and competition, she seemed to settle down and did a real good job of hitting her routines. A little more than four years later, not much has changed. Drass is still Missouri s coach and Khederian is still an allarounder essential to the team s success. There are some differences, though: Khederian is now a senior and more vocal. I ve tried to take on more of a leadership role and obviously help out the underclassman, Khederian said. At the time (as a freshman), I didn t even know what college gymnastics was about. Now I have been around and know what it s like and just try to help my other teammates as much as I can with my experience. Outside of gymnastics, Khederian has also become a more independent person. When I came to college, because my mom didn t work, I had never done laundry, made my bed, just basic things, Khederian said with a laugh. I know how to do those things now and I am little bit more self-sufficient. The No. 16 Tigers meet against No. 23 Arizona State at 6:30 p.m. Friday at Hearnes Center will be the last home meet for Khederian as a Missouri Tiger. But to her, it s just another meet. I am anticipating some emotion, but I am not really that emotional of a person, Khederian said. I m just trying not to think about it and get caught up in it because it s an important meet, and I just want to do what I normally do. Although Khederian s senior season has gone as expected by competing in every meet, the other three seniors have not had similar success. Early in the season, Lisa Puccio was recovering from tearing her ACL the year before which led to a slow start to her season. Julie Abaray was recovering from two knee surgeries in the summer to fix meniscus issues and Nikki Bowman has had ankle issues and is currently awaiting summer ankle surgery. Although, there have been many ups-and-downs for the seniors, their friendship has remained strong. They re my three best friends, Khederian said. Julie, Nikki and I went on our recruiting trip together (at MU), so we ve known each other for a long time. They are a great group of girls and I am glad we ve all stayed with it together. Drass says the all four seniors will compete in the meet. Khederian will perform in the all-around with Abaray and Puccio possibly competing on the balance beam and uneven bars respectively. Even if Abaray and Puccio do not compete as scorers in the meet, they will perform in exhibition along with Bowman, which is important to Drass. We try to make sure that all the seniors get to participate in the senior meet, Drass said. It s owed to them that they gave us four good years and we want to make sure we send them out in style.

32 Gymnastics coach emphasizes academics and humor MU gymnastics coach John Figueroa is also a laid-back, upbeat coach who the gymnasts say they can always count on. BY JOSH WOLFF March 19, :20 p.m. CST COLUMBIA Missouri sophomore gymnast Meghann Raub left her silver Pontiac Grand Am in the parking lot next to Chipotle on Ninth Street. As the car door shut, Raub realized her keys were still inside the car with the doors locked. She was supposed to drive fellow sophomore gymnast Sarah Shire and herself to study hall, but now she couldn t. Raub thought of calling her father, but didn t. She could have called AAA or the police, but didn t. Instead, she picked up her cell phone and called first-year Tigers gymnastics associate head coach John Figueroa and asked him what to do. Figueroa told Raub to go to study hall with Shire and he would take care of her car. Figueroa dropped what he was doing and headed to Raub s car with a coat hanger. He found Raub s car and tried to jiggle the lock open, but he wasn t successful. He tried other solutions, but he eventually called the police. When they told Figueroa they could not open car doors because of insurance issues, Figueroa called Raub s father, who was in Springfield for work. Her father came to Columbia that night with a spare key. They know that I am not going to judge them, and they will have a place to come to, Figueroa said about being there for his gymnasts. I want the kids to feel like they can come to me if they can t go to their parents. I want them to feel comfortable. Figueroa was an assistant coach at Denver University for eight seasons, where he also acted as recruiting coordinator. Fig, as he is known by the gymnasts, puts a strong emphasis on education and succeeding in the classroom. While his teams at Denver had varying degrees of success, the one constant was academics. In 2007, his last season at Denver, the Pioneers volleyball team compiled a GPA, the second best in the country. Made up of mostly gymnasts he recruited, the team also finished 10th in the country in the team competition at the 2007 NCAA National Championships. Figueroa has brought those same expectations to the Tigers gymnastics team. For a coach so adamant about classroom success, many would expect a no-nonsense, stern coach. However, Figueroa breaks that stereotype and is the team joker. During practices, Figueroa is always in an upbeat mood and having fun. He sings to the music played over the loudspeaker, while, according to the gymnasts, messing up the lyrics. He dances to music and even mocks the gymnasts dance moves. He is not afraid to make jokes about the gymnasts either. They are important for the gymnasts psyche. I crack a lot of little inside jokes, make fun of what they re wearing, or what their hair looks like, Figueroa said. Anything to get their mind-set off what they have done for the day and give them a more relaxed atmosphere. During practice one day, freshman Lisa LaPerriere was running down the mat leading to the vault when she tripped and fell. After picking her head up, frustrated and embarrassed, she was just hoping her coach was not mad. She looked at Figueroa, who started to joke with her. Did you forget how to run? Figueroa said. Did your mom keep you inside knitting all day long? It s like a cartoon. My joking with them is because I want them to relax, he said. If I m the one to crack the joke and get her to feel that I am not upset about it, then she will feel more comfortable about her next turn. The next time she ran down the mat, she executed her vault almost perfectly. When sophomore Danielle Guider was having trouble performing a front flip on the uneven bars, Figueroa was there to encourage her. When she finally completed the move, Figueroa bought her frosted cherry Pop-Tarts as a reward. Now, whenever he goes to Wal-Mart, he continues to buy them as a joke. Guider said the Pop-Tart story shows how much Figueroa cares about his gymnasts and is just another example of his fun personality. It motivates me because he is such an exciting coach, Guider said. I want to be somewhere with someone with a positive attitude who always looks at the big picture in a positive way.

33 As the Tigers recruiting coordinator, Figueroa s upbeat personality not only affects the current Missouri gymnasts, but also the future gymnasts. This year the gymnastic team signed three highly decorated recruits from Illinois, Oklahoma and Texas. When Figueroa recruits, he does not change his personality because his jokes, dancing and singing are how he interacts with gymnasts. The kids want to see that they can relate to you in whatever way they can, and I want to be able to relate to them, Figueroa said. You want your kids to have a good environment and you want to really care for them. His enthusiasm for the sport is readily apparent to the gymnasts. You don t want a coach that s boring or monotone, Raub said. You want a coach that loves the school he s at and loves to coach and Fig is definitely that. His behavior helps make the coaching staff well-rounded. Him and (head coach) Rob (Drass) are completely different and it helps balance out the team, Guider said. It s not so strict and not so relaxed, it s right in the middle. However, the most important part of Figueroa s fun-loving personality is that he acts with the gymnasts exactly how he acts with his two children. In return, the gymnasts view Figueroa as a fatherly figure and they know they can always count on him, no matter the situation. Any one of us could call him if we were ever in trouble, Raub said. He would be the first person I would call if I was stranded on the side on road. And you can talk to him about everything: boys, school or anything else.

34 MU gymnasts friends first BY JOSH WOLFF March 12, :51 p.m. CST COLUMBIA Missouri sophomore gymnasts Liz Straatmann and Sarah Shire were driving to gymnastics practice during high school. It was springtime; the weather was becoming warm and outdoor activities were starting. On Woods Chapel Road in Blue Springs, Straatmann, at the wheel, noticed a lake to their right with boats. A normally boring car ride, the monotony disappeared with the sight of the boats. They turned their heads and admired the floating objects on the blue lake. As soon as their heads cocked 90 degrees, they rode up onto a curb to their left. Hanging over the curb, both startled, Straatmann immediately backed off the curb and onto the road. Both took deep breaths and decided to focus on the road. It was one of our near-death experiences, Shire said with a laugh. But we made it safely to practice, for the most part. Shire and Straatmann met at Great American Gymnastics Express, an elite gymnastics training facility in Blue Springs that also has produced current MU gymnasts Adrianne Perry and Alicia Hatcher. Originally, they were just acquaintances who would see each other at the gym. But when Straatmann needed to find a high school closer to GAGE, Shire s family was there to help. Shire attended Archbishop O Hara High School in Kansas City where her father was a teacher, and he suggested the school to Straatmann s parents. Straatmann had attended Catholic school her entire life, so her parents saw Archbishop O Hara as a great choice. But when they realized that Shire s father could also give Straatmann a ride to practice every day during his lunch break, the school became the perfect choice. Going to the same school, having many of the same classes and driving together 25 minutes a day to GAGE, Shire and Straatmann became friends. Practicing from 1 to 7 p.m. almost daily, bonding became inevitable. It was hard every day going to gym and going to school, Shire said. I think we leaned on each other for support. We were both tired on the same days, and she supported me and I supported her. After they turned 16 and were old enough to drive, they rotated driving responsibilities. During the car rides, they played loud music and sang to the radio, just acting like typical teenagers. Over time, their friendship became stronger and they counted on each other during difficult times. However, when Shire tore ligaments in her right foot during her senior year, Straatmann was more than willing to drive every day knowing how difficult it was for Shire to drive. For Straatmann s generosity, Shire gave back during Straatmann s toughest days. When Straatmann tore her left ACL for the second time during her senior season, she was obviously frustrated. But Shire kept her positive. Sarah was there to encourage me to not give up, Straatmann said. I could ve been at that point, but she was there to calm me down. While many top-level collegiate recruits discuss college choices in-depth with teammates, Shire and Straatmann resisted the temptation. None of us really talked about sticking together, Shire said. Not to be rude or anything, it just didn t work out for us that way. I think we each went to what was best for us at the time. Shire committed to Utah during March of her junior year, while Straatmann would not commit to MU for another six months. Although Shire had already chosen her college, she did not want to interfere in Straatmann s decision. She definitely did it on her own, Shire said. I remember her tossing up a couple of schools here and there and she would talk about pros and cons. But it was definitely her and her family s decision. When college started, it proved to be a difficult experience after spending so much time together during high school. It was a lot different, Straatmann said. Our group of friends was so close, being away from everyone was just really hard.

35 However, Straatmann and Shire did manage to communicate at college when time would permit. Busy during most of the week with school, practice and competitions, the pair had the opportunity to talk for a couple of hours each Sunday afternoon. Shire also was able to see Straatmann during her school breaks. Shire s parents lived in Hartsburg, so when she came home from school, she visited Straatmann in her dorm room and the two would hang out. However, at Utah, Shire never felt settled and missed many aspects of home, including Straatmann. Although it never crossed Shire s mind that she would leave Utah, she voiced her discontent to Straatmann. We had kind of been talking and she was telling me how things weren t going well, and not how she wanted, Straatmann said. I was trying to encourage and keep her as sane as possible. Then she just called me one afternoon. That phone call Shire remembers vividly, including the exact date of July 19, I remember asking her Do remember when we used to be teammates at GAGE? Shire said. She was like yeah, and then I said Would you like that again? and she said Oh my gosh, no way! Shire had decided that Utah was not the place for her and that being back home at MU, with her friends, would be best. And Straatmann couldn t be happier go to school with Shire. She had a lot of stories, I had a lot of stories, Straatmann said. We missed an entire year of each other s lives. We just talked a lot at first, got her used to everything (at MU) and showed her around. When school started in August, Shire got lost on campus. She called none other than Straatmann, who guided her the right way. Straatmann also helped Shire adjust to the new school by introducing her to other athletes, allowing Shire to make friends right away. When I got back here, she kind of grounded me again, helped me remember where I was from, what I started from, Shire said. She really helped me grow as a person, find me and be the person that I used to be and the person I want to be. While Straatmann helped Shire get acclimated to MU, Shire helped Straatmann have a better gymnastic mentality. She is the biggest supporter in the gym, Straatmann said. If I am having a bad day in the gym, she is always going to be there for words of encouragement. In the gym, she has helped me most to be a better athlete and stay positive. For Shire and Straatmann, they will always remember growing up together. The thing with me and Liz is, no matter what, we go back to the same common ground, Shire said. No matter where we go in life, I can guarantee you in 10 years, we are going to be able to laugh about stuff that happened sophomore year in high school.

36 Perry in fine form for MU gymnasts BY JOSH WOLFF March 8, :45 p.m. CST COLUMBIA Missouri junior Adrianne Perry is on a roll. Her in the all-around competition tied for first place with Illinois Allison Buckley. The Illinois freshman s score was the second highest for the program, but even such an impressive score could not defeat Perry. The second highest score of the season for Perry marked the fourth consecutive week she has held at least a share of the all-around title. She has won titles at the Cat Classic, against Oklahoma and at Southeast Missouri State while defeating two top-10 gymnasts in the process. Perry, who was also named Big 12 Conference Gymnast of the Week last week, won the vault, the uneven bars and the balance beam. She also placed fifth in the floor competition. Her strong efforts helped No. 15 Missouri narrowly defeat Illinois on Saturday at Huff Hall in Champaign, Ill. The Tigers started slow in the first event of the meet, the uneven bars. None of the Missouri gymnasts scored higher than and the Tigers trailed Illinois after the first rotation. However, the Tigers made up the difference with a in the vault, tying a season high. In addition to Perry s top vault score of 9.900, sophomore Danielle Guider and senior Ashley Khederian had season bests. Khederian scored a and Guider posted a improving on her previous season high of set at the Cat Classic. Usually consistent sophomore Sarah Shire, who placed third in last week s Cat Classic, struggled Saturday with a , her lowest all-around score of the season. Shire struggled in the floor exercise, normally her strongest event, and the balance beam. On the beam she scored a while on the floor, an event she had not scored lower than a this season, she scored a Alicia Hatcher, an event specialist who competes in three events for the Tigers but does not compete in the all-around, posted another round of solid scores. She had a in the floor exercise, a in the balance beam and a on the uneven bars. Sophomores Becky Scholle and Liz Straatmann also performed well for the Tigers. Scholle matched her uneven bars score at the Cat Classic with a Straatmann, who competed in exhibition on the balance beam, scored a Although the score did not count, it was a personal best. Missouri has two matches left in the regular season and next week will travel to Oregon State to participate in the Salbasgeon Suites Invitational featuring No. 7 Oregon State, No. 22 Boise State and Sacramento State.

37 MU gymnasts follow steady beat of new coach Amy Smith was a member of a national title squad at UCLA and looks to help the Tigers emulate that success. BY JOSH WOLFF March 5, :55 p.m. CST COLUMBIA At the Cat Classic gymnastics meet Friday night at the Hearnes Center, rapper Unk s Walk it Out played in the background during warm-ups. While the song was being played, first-year Missouri coach Amy Smith started to dance on the edges of the floor exercise mat. Immediately after Smith had finished dancing, sophomore Sarah Shire and junior Alicia Hatcher started to dance to the song as well, imitating many of Smith s dance moves. While many of the Missouri gymnasts mimic techniques, gymnastic moves or even the dancing of Smith, their ultimate goal is to mimic her success as a gymnast. During Smith s collegiate career at UCLA, she was a first-team All American in the balance beam and floor exercise. However, even more important to Smith, she was the team captain of UCLA s 1997 National Championship team the school s first gymnastic championship, making the Bruins only the fourth school to win an NCAA gymnastics championship. Because of the way the gymnastics championships are scheduled, the team finals were performed before the individual finals. Smith had a chance to win an individual championship in both the floor exercise and balance beam, but individual success at that point was trivial to Smith. We went out to compete and we did these horrible routines, Smith said of the individual championships. We didn t care because we had accomplished our goal of winning a team championship and that was the most important thing to us. The individual stuff didn t really matter. Smith s coach at UCLA, Valorie Kondos-Field, taught the UCLA gymnasts to adopt a team-first attitude and told the gymnasts if they worked hard, they could have fun in the sport. Now a coach, Smith sees gymnastics from a different angle than she did as a participant. It s so funny now to be in that position on the other side of it, Smith said. To think back to some of the things (Kondos-Field) would say or do and I say 0h wow, I get it on a whole other level now of what she was trying to get accomplished. Smith says she tries to instill confidence in her gymnasts and be a motivator, but also knows when to be tough, something she says she learned from her coach at UCLA. I think I am hard, but I think I m fair, Smith said. I like to have fun, too, I am not serious all the time by any means. If you re getting your job done, it ends up being fun and you can have fun doing it. Smith enjoys having fun during gymnastics practice and emphasizes a team-first attitude, but her intensity is always high. It doesn t matter if she is giving positive reinforcement or constructive criticism, Smith is always intense because it keeps the gymnasts on task. I just want the gymnasts to focus, Smith said. Going back to wanting to get the work done, in the moment, that s what it takes. Smith focuses much of her coaching on finding the intricacies of each athlete. Knowing her gymnasts better helps Smith come up with successful routines, because she knows what moves will work and what moves will not work, physically and mentally. Working with the athletes to develop their routines is an important part of coaching. But, equally as important is the coaching that comes when the gymnasts are most nervous: the moments leading up to their events. Smith tries to lighten the gymnasts emotions and nerves before their routines begin. I always tell them what happens before them and what happens after them doesn t matter, Smith said. They re in control of themselves in that moment and to stay in control and focused. That pre-routine focus is something Shire says Smith has improved immensely.

38 Before each routine, she calms me down and tells me look, you know you can do this, Shire said. I don t think many coaches have had a lot of faith in me before, and she really has faith in what I can do and she helps me with that every day. When Smith gives advice to the MU gymnasts, they listen because they want to emulate her successes. We can look up to her and say wow, she has been to nationals and won nationals, Hatcher said. I think just knowing that whenever she makes corrections to us, it s coming from a place where she knows what she s talking about. Hatcher also enjoys Smith s intensity. She brings so much energy and fire, Hatcher said. For me, she is always like come on Hatch, you can do it. She gets you really motivated even if it s for just one turn or beam routine and its not just in a meet or intra-squad, it s every time and every day. But perhaps Smith s best coaching moves beyond the competition. Amy is very easy to relate to because she was a college athlete herself, Shire said. She understands what we re going through, and she is there to listen to us about gymnastics and about life. She is very good at separating the gym from life, and if there s something you need to talk about that s not even gymnastics related, she s there to listen, she s there to console and she s there to help.

39 MU gymnast hopes injury doesn t end career BY JOSH WOLFF February 27, :46 p.m. CST COLUMBIA MU senior gymnast Julie Abaray stood with her teammates while being introduced to the crowd before the Tigers meet against Oklahoma on Friday at the Hearnes Center. When the introductions finished, Abaray and her teammates walked over to the end of the mat leading to the vault to prepare for the first event. Abaray was dressed in a black warm-up decorated with glitter and the word Mizzou sewn on the back in gold sparkling lettering. However, when her teammates took off their warm-ups for competition, Abaray left hers on. As a junior, Abaray competed in the uneven bars, the balance beam and the floor exercise in every meet for the Tigers. She also tied for fifth place on the balance beam in the Big 12 Championships. After finishing her junior season on a high note, Abaray had high hopes for her senior year. I was really looking forward to (my senior season) because I knew we were going to have an awesome team, Abaray said. We knew Sarah (Shire) was transferring here and that she would be a great help. I was really looking forward to being part of the team that had a shot at making nationals. However, Abaray s dream of competing for a national championship contender has not come true. During MU s first meet last year at the Cancun Gymnastics Classic in Mexico, some of the gymnasts went snorkeling, including Abaray. While in the water, she felt a sharp pain in her left knee and entire leg. Initially, the team thought it was a hamstring injury and she continued competing with the hope the pain would go away. Still in pain after the season was completed, Abaray saw the team doctor to determine the injury. Fearing a torn meniscus, the doctor sent her to get an MRI, which confirmed the fear. A torn meniscus was nothing new to Abaray, who lost her entire junior year in high school because of a torn meniscus in both knees. After learning of her left knee injury, Abaray suspected that her right knee might be torn as well. The same thing happened to her in high school, where the tear in her left knee was diagnosed first, and then the tear in her right knee was found later. Her suspicions were correct, and Abaray had a torn meniscus in her right knee as well. After receiving surgery on both knees during the summer, she was left with a lengthy rehabilitation process that left her unable to perform any physical activity for four months. Unable to compete so far this season because of the injury, Abaray has put in hours of rehabilitation trying to get back before the year is over. She rehabs at least once a day before her classes, sometimes twice. She does many strength exercises, including leg raises, calf raises, squats and lower body rubber band exercises. While Abaray wants to perform again as a Tiger, she has ambivalent feelings trying to balance the future with the present. I am a senior and only have a few meets left, but I don t want to completely give up just in case my knee isn t torn again and it s just sore, Abaray said. But if my knee is torn again, I don t want to possibly injure it worse to where I can t, when I am older, run around with my kids. Watching her teammates perform during the meets has proven to be the hardest part of Abaray s injury. It s definitely getting harder as the season goes on and this year has just not been at all what I expected and hoped for, Abaray said. It s just really hard to watch meet after meet. To not being able to (compete) is pretty devastating at this point. Abaray is not only a dedicated athlete, but also a dedicated student and uses her academics to ease her frustration. As a broadcast journalism major, Abaray is always busy with something. I always have a ton of school work, Abaray said with a laugh. I always have some reading I should be doing or some paper I should be starting. I am always doing homework. It is not a fun way, but it helps take my mind off gymnastics.

40 Abaray s teammates are there to help relieve some of the disappointment as well. For support, Abaray can look no further than fellow senior and friend Nikki Bowman, who also has had similar injury issues with three ankle surgeries in the past and another one scheduled after the season. I try to get her to look at the future since we are seniors and we are almost done, Bowman said. Looking at perspective (is what helps), look at what you ve done and accomplished and just try to look at the happier sides of things. Abaray gives back to her teammates support by trying to be a leader off the floor for them. I try to be an influence for the girls outside of the gym, Abaray said. I hope that the girls see my involvement with other aspects of the athletic department, with the community and with my academics. I hope they see that it does pay off and is worthwhile. Even though the Tigers have had a successful season, ranking No. 14 in the country, Abaray says her experience could help the team. I think it would have helped to have more seniority in the lineup because I have experience competing at the Big 12 Championships and at Regionals, Abaray said. Our underclassmen are doing a wonderful job, but it always helps to have more senior leadership out there. Abaray s presence in the lineup is also missed by MU coach Rob Drass. She was a very strong athlete last year and did a lot of great things for us, Drass said. But I think her knees are bugging her and that happens as you get older in gymnastics; your body starts to wear down a bit. Abaray had hoped to get back into the lineup, or at least perform as an exhibitionist, against Oklahoma after learning a dismount off the beam that is easier on her knees. However, the pain in her knee would not allow her to compete. Abaray still hopes to get back this year.

41 A look at MU gymnastics big night BY MICHAEL STONACEK February 22, :34 p.m. CST The Tigers may have lost to a higher-ranked team on Friday, but the gymnasts performed near the top of their game and just barely missed the upset. MICHAEL STONACEK/Missourian MU s gymnastics watches team member Alicia Hatcher perform on the beam at tonight s meet against Oklahoma. MICHAEL STONACEK/Missourian MU s Ashley Khederian poses during her floor routine at tonight s meet against Oklahoma.

42 MICHAEL STONACEK/Missourian Sophomore Sarah Shire hangs on during her beam performance on Friday night against Oklahoma. MICHAEL STONACEK/Missourian Ashley Khederian celebrates a teammates performance during a meet against No. 6 Oklahoma on Friday night at the Hearnes Center.

43 Gymnast focuses on team, not country After missing out on a chance to advance to the U.S. Olympic Team Trials by one spot, MU sophomore Sarah Shire now performs for herself and the Tigers. BY JOSH WOLFF February 20, :42 p.m. CST COLUMBIA In 2004, Missouri sophomore gymnast Sarah Shire was at the Gaylord Entertainment Center in Nashville, Tenn., competing in the U.S. National Gymnastics Championships. Shire and 30 of the best gymnasts in the country were all vying for 14 spots to advance to the U.S. Olympic Team Trials. Shire had one of her better meets but placed 15th, barely missing the opportunity to travel to Anaheim, Calif., for the trials. Her performance was rewarded by being named first alternate, but it was still a disappointment for a gymnast who had dreamed about the Olympics since she was 8 years old. However, Shire s hopes didn t end until just before the trials. After we got home, I had got my mind set that I was done (with the Olympic dreams) and my next step was going to be in the World Championships in 2005, Shire said. I had unwound my brain a little bit, and I found out three days before the meet that I was going (to the team trials). An injury to another gymnast allowed Shire to travel to the trials, where the injured gymnast was still deciding whether to perform. Until the day of the meet came, Shire had no idea if she would be competing. When the injured gymnast started her routine on the uneven bars, Shire knew her Olympic dreams were officially over. Even though the other gymnast fell during her routine and dropped out, because the other gymnast had touched the equipment, Shire was left out. Shire, healthy and obviously frustrated, had ambivalent feelings about her experience. It was disappointing because I got so close, but at the same time it wasn t disappointing because I got so close, Shire said. I didn t go to GAGE (Great American Gymnastic Express) until I was 13 years old, so I had been behind from the start. So just to be on the same level as Terin (Humphrey) and Courtney (McCool) was amazing for me. While at GAGE, an elite gymnastics training center in Blue Springs, Shire became best friends with Humphrey and Mc- Cool, and said she could not have been happier that they made the Olympics. I grew up with those girls. We spent 40 hours a week in the gym together, Shire said. I knew everything about them, knew their families, been to their houses. It meant a lot to me to watch them succeed. But it was still hard for Shire to be so close to the Olympics. She hoped to remain low key and sporadically watch the Olympics, but with limited access to the athletes during Olympics, media outlets in Kansas City asked Shire to talk to McCool and Humphrey, and report about their experiences. When Shire watched the Olympics, she could not help but picture herself performing in Athens. It was hard for me to watch and hard for me to accept it, Shire said. But at the same time, I was so proud of the girls. They earned second place and did an amazing (job). McCool and Humphrey earned silver medals in the team competition and Humphrey received a silver medal for her uneven bars performance. When the Olympics finished, Shire finally had time to get over her disappointment. While the emotional healing took time, the Olympic training was a great learning tool for her. I think I learned a lot about myself. I can accomplish a lot when I put my mind to it, Shire said. I realized that experience at one point made me hate gymnastics so much, and at the same time made me realize how much I loved it. The rigorous training behind her, Shire retired from elite competition in After her elite career ended, Shire was finally able to relax and become more like a normal teenager, which helped open her eyes to a new life. My senior year of high school, I went on a religious retreat, Shire said. It helped me open up and realize gymnastics wasn t my life and there are so many more things beyond that. It really helped me move on and look toward new

44 Puccio leads by example off the floor for Tiger gymnastics BY JOSH WOLFF February 13, :42 p.m. CST COLUMBIA Missouri senior gymnast Lisa Puccio was performing on the balance beam during the 2006 Black and Gold meet when she landed awkwardly on her right knee. She felt some pain, but continued to perform in the meet. The next event was the floor exercise and Puccio performed a tumble. However, when she landed, she sat down and knew something was wrong. After visiting a doctor, Puccio found out she tore her ACL and her junior season was done. It was really tough because my junior year was going to be a breakout season for me, Puccio said. I didn t really get any of the opportunities that I was hoping for because that (torn ACL) happened so early in the season. Now a senior, Puccio s value to the Tiger gymnastics team does not show up on the score sheet. She leads with her experience and also contributes as the team s unofficial hair stylist, an interest that started with her mother. My mom did everyone s hair when we were in club, Puccio said. I guess I kind of just learned from her. Puccio started styling her teammates hair as a freshman, beginning with current-senior Nikki Bowman. But as other teammates saw Nikki s hair, Puccio s client list grew. She has styled the hair of as many as eight of her fellow Tigers for a single meet and has a specific style for each gymnast. Certain people like certain things, Puccio said. I always French braid Ashley s (Khederian) hair, I always pull Nikki s back and the same for Becky (Scholle). Even for meets on the road, Puccio styles hair in her hotel room, and although she admits it does become hectic at times, she enjoys it. Because Puccio has been styling teammates hair for four years, it has become a routine for each meet. It s almost a ritual because I am used to doing it every meet, Puccio said. It makes them ready to compete because you compete better when you know that you look better. According to members of the gymnastics team, believing you look good is an underrated aspect of the mental part of gymnastics. We always talk about how if you don t feel like you look good, you won t be able to compete well, senior Ashley Khederian said. If I couldn t have (my hair) done, I would be thinking about other things instead of gymnastics. Since this season is Puccio s last with the Tigers, she is passing the torch to sophomore Meghann Raub. When Puccio is busy, Raub does the styling and says she will gladly accept the role of hair stylist next year. While Puccio s hairstyles last on her teammates for just the length of the meets, the lasting mark she leaves on them is through her persistence to fight back from such a devastating injury. An ACL injury is a huge injury and something really hard to overcome, said Raub. She could have easily quit and said I only have one year left, but she stuck with it. Puccio has helped the younger teammates, especially the freshmen, because she simply recalls her time as a young gymnast when giving advice. I just have to remember what it was like for me to be a freshman, Puccio said. It can be difficult at times and kind of scary, but just teaching them the way (of college gymnastics) is how to help. Missouri head coach Rob Drass also sees Puccio s value. Although her senior season has been slowed because of her injury and she is limited to the uneven bars, she sets a great example for her teammates. She leads by example in many ways, Drass said. She s a great student, great person and has a good head on her shoulders.

45 Camaraderie keeps Tigers Gold in gymnastics BY JOSH WOLFF MISSOURIAN February 6, :33 p.m. CST COLUMBIA Missouri freshman gymnast Alex Gold sits on a mat at practice. She talks with her teammates about her classes and the team. When a teammate makes a joke, Gold laughs and flashes a brilliant smile. Gold says she has never been happier in gymnastics than at Missouri. Gold s journey to this larger stage, however, was interrupted. In ninth grade, Gold quit gymnastics, a sport she had been competing in since she was 6. She said she quit partially because her coach left for the Olympics, but also because she was mentally and physically drained from the rigors of nonstop training. I really needed a break from the sport, and it was really good for me to quit, Gold said. I was just physically burned out. Before ninth grade, Gold, who is from Plano, Texas, had been training 35 hours a week including two-a-day practices. She would practice for about two hours before school and then three hours after school. The constant training took a toll on her body. At first, Gold was happy to have a break from gymnastics. However, as time passed, she began to miss the friendships she made while training. The first four months I was really excited I was out of it, Gold said. But, the last two (months) I was envious of my friends who were still in it. Gold s best friends were gymnasts and when they would hang out, they would talk about gymnastics. Although she did not miss the coaches, she missed the sport. She said she came back to gymnastics because she was bored and missed her friends. For the past 10 years, with the exception of that 6-month period during ninth grade, she has stuck with the sport, training every week. She said she could not picture herself doing anything other than gymnastics. (I wanted) to get a college scholarship first of all, Gold said. But, I missed the sport, and I didn t know what to do with myself since I have been doing it for so long. When Gold came back to gymnastics, she didn t feel like her old self, and some of her normal routines seemed difficult. It took her four months to get back in shape. I knew everything, but it took me a long time to get back to doing the simplest things, Gold said. It was really frustrating, but I eventually got back. Gold does not regret her time away from gymnastics because she says the rest was necessary for her body and mind, but the break and ensuing fight to get back in shape taught her a key life lesson. I have become more patient with myself because coming back into it, it was really hard and frustrating, Gold said. I don t get as frustrated as easily now. Now Gold says she is enjoying gymnastics more than ever because of the focus of collegiate gymnastics. (My love for gymnastics) is the best it s ever been, Gold said. I love college gymnastics and it s 10 times better than club because it s for the team. While the MU gymnastics team is ranked No. 14 in the country, Gold has proven to be an indispensable part of the vault rotation, ranking 74th in the country and second on the team. Gold has truly embodied the team-first aspect of gymnastics and is willing to do whatever the team asks of her in competition. She not only is a great teammate, but also a great friend. We ve been connected at the hip ever since we met, Lisa LaPerriere, Gold s teammate and roommate, said. Whenever I need advice, she s always there. Gold has also showed the coaching staff that she is the consummate teammate because of the way she approaches the sport.

46 I think Alex brings a hard working ethic to our team, Missouri head coach Rob Drass said. She has all the morals and values that we feel are important. Although some days can be difficult trying to manage the pressures of college gymnastics with school, Gold is not thinking about quitting anytime soon and is thoroughly enjoying her time at Missouri. I really like it and am really excited to be here and part of the program, Gold said. I couldn t be happier. MU gymnast returns to balance beam BY JOSH WOLFF MISSOURIAN January 29, :13 a.m. CST COLUMBIA Although the Missouri gymnastics team suffered its first loss of the season Friday in Nebraska , the Tigers may have found a new mainstay in the balance beam rotation with sophomore Brooke Boehmer. Boehmer, who has had sound performances this year against Bowling Green and Iowa State, set a personal record in the beam with a Her previous best was in the first meet of the season. However, for Boehmer, just being back on the beam is a great accomplishment. Last year, during a preseason practice, she tore her ACL and missed the entire season. Although Boehmer admits it was difficult losing her freshman season, she used her injury to her advantage. Being in my first year of college, it was hard sitting on the sidelines, Boehmer said. But it was fun to watch and experience while trying to recover. Boehmer made the best of her situation by watching and learning from her teammates. Missouri head coach Rob Drass said he thinks that sitting out a year may have helped her current season. I think as you sit and watch for a year, you see things from a different angle, Drass said. It fueled her fire. One of the reasons Boehmer learned so much by simply watching her teammates practice and compete is because of her intelligence. She is a chemistry major and wants to become an eye doctor. Her dream of becoming an eye doctor started from a simple science class. In seventh grade, we dissected an eye and my lab partner wouldn t touch it, so I cut it open, Boehmer said. I found it really interesting and I like math and science. Boehmer s intelligence is great advantage for her during practices, too, when the coaches need to correct technique and give general advice. It is always better to coach an intelligent athlete, Drass said. When they re doing well in school, there is less that they bring with them into the gym on a daily basis, and it is easier to communicate with them. While Boehmer has been challenged in the class room with classes, her toughest fight in gymnastics was her injury, but she overcame it with her dedication to the sport and rehabbing her knee twice a day. She has one of the best work ethics on the team, assistant coach Amy Smart said. From where she started to where she is now is huge, but she has done the work. Because of her injury, Boehmer is not participating in the vault or the floor exercise for fear of aggravating her knee, so her main focus is the balance beam. Her concentration on the beam has paid off as evident by her personal best and fourth place finish in Nebraska. She has been solid in each and every meet, but last weekend she had fantastic routine, Drass said. I think she has more like that in her. Not competing in meets for longer than a year can be mentally draining. In a sport that is every bit mental as physical, Boehmer now feels better about her contribution to the team. It boosts your confidence because it s always good to get a good score, but especially not competing or doing

47 anything last year, Boehmer said. It feels good, and now I know I can do it. Her boost in confidence is apparent to her teammates, as well. She s a little more energetic and enthusiastic, teammate Alicia Hatcher, junior, said. She s the quiet person that surprises you all the time, and she comes in here everyday and works really hard. Although Boehmer set a personal record, her coaches said there is even more room for improvement. Her personal best against Nebraska was still not mistake-free. She went and took a small break on her front handspring, Smith said. Her toe point is unbelievable, and there is no reason she can t go plus with her beam routine once she hits it solid. And for Boehmer, dealing with the rigors of training in addition to the schoolwork is not as bad as most would think. I did hard classes in high school, and I feel high school days were longer days than college, Boehmer said. It is just making myself sit down and actually do my homework even if others are talking downstairs or going out. From where she was last year to now setting personal records, Boehmer has come a long way through determination, hard work and observing her teammates. I could not be more proud of her, Smith said. She is so beautiful to watch.

48 MU could take step up to elite Tigers seek first crown in Big 12. By DAVE MATTER of the Tribune s staff Published Saturday, March 29, 2008 In years past, Missouri gymnastics Coach Rob Drass figured it d take a flawless performance for his Tigers to capture the Big 12 Conference title. Those days might be over. Drass believes 18th-ranked Missouri heads into tonight s Big 12 championships at Oklahoma s Lloyd Noble Center with as good a chance as ever to capture the program s first conference crown since winning the Big Eight in We re a very solid team, and one thing you haven t seen us do this year is really collapse and have real trouble, Drass said. We re much more seasoned than we have been. We re just trying to get all the little things together on the same day. And that s the difference between a team that belongs in the top 10 and one that doesn t. And if we can do those types of things, the meet s ours as much as it is anyone else s. That s somewhere I don t think we ve been before. In the past, we ve had to be perfect to have a chance to win this conference. Right now, I think we have to be really good but not perfect. Perfect is exactly what No. 9 Oklahoma s been through the regular season. In fact, the Sooners (18-0) are the country s only unbeaten team. Led by five-time All-American Kiara Redmond-Sturms, Oklahoma figures to be the favorite to win its first league title since Redmond-Sturms was the only Big 12 gymnast to land a spot on the all-conference team in all four events. Among Big 12 gymnasts, she owns top-four regional qualifying scores on the floor exercise (first), bars (first), vault (second) and beam (third). This year, she s won Big 12 gymnast of the week honors a record seven times. Two of her top challengers for the all-around crown will come from Missouri. Junior Adrianne Perry has won the allaround in five of MU s last six meets, while sophomore Sarah Shire owns a team-high 19 event titles this season. The Tigers (10-5) are 1-2 against Big 12 competition this year, with a victory over Iowa State and losses to Nebraska and Oklahoma. We re really confident, Shire said. It s a known fact that we haven t put a meet together yet. This is our weekend. What have we got to lose? Nobody really expects us to do great, but I expect us to do great. This team expects greatness. Nebraska (10-4), ranked 14th, has won eight of the previous 11 Big 12 meets, including last year s in Columbia. Cornhuskers senior Emily Parsons, a St. Charles native, won the all-around, vault, beam and floor titles at last year s Big 12 meet and parlayed that success into two top-four finishes at the NCAA Championships. Under second-year Coach Jay Ronayne, Iowa State (1-9) has struggled most of the season, with its lone victory coming Feb. 22 against Iowa. The Cyclones, who finished fourth at last year s conference meet, are 0-3 against other Big 12 teams this season.

49 Shire flourishes after fresh start MU gymnast rediscovers love of sport. By DAVE MATTER of the Tribune s staff Published Friday, March 28, 2008 Sarah Shire was packed and ready to go, ready to bury her gymnastics career in Utah and leave both state and sport behind. Her freshman season with the national powerhouse Utes had left Shire with multiple broken bones and, worse, a distaste for the sport that had defined her life. After an unhappy freshman year at Utah, Hartsburg native Sarah Shire transferred to Missouri and rediscovered her love of gymnastics. Shire will compete in the Big 12 Championships tomorrow in Norman, Okla. That explains why her dad showed up on July 26 and picked her up to make the 17-hour, 1,200-mile journey back to Missouri. What they were headed toward was unclear, but David Shire was pretty sure what they were leaving behind. It was pretty matter of fact as we were crossing Wyoming that gymnastics might not be in her future, he said. The biggest thing that we as parents always say is, Your happiness comes first. If you re not happy doing gymnastics, then we re going to Plan B. I don t know what that is, but we re going with the same zeal, the same passion and commitment. But we did think we might have seen Sarah s last competition. It was a real possibility. She was beat up, physically and mentally. Last spring, Shire had been part of the second-place team at the NCAA Championships, but something about her year at Utah didn t fit. Injuries played a role, but more important, she missed home. And whether or not she would continue her gymnastics career, she decided to enroll at Missouri and become what she called a normal student. Shire, 20, spent the summer resting stress fractures in her back and elbow while wrestling with decisions about her future. I had to stop and ask myself, Is it worth it? Is the pain worth it? she said. For a couple months, I didn t think it was. But back home - David and Robyn Shire live in Hartsburg - an open door awaited. Shire had been ing Missouri Coach Rob Drass, and shortly before the fall semester began, she agreed to meet with him in the Hearnes Center fieldhouse. I don t know where I want to go. I don t really know what I want to do, she recalled telling Drass. I don t think I m done, but at the same time, I feel like I can walk away. Drass response was everything Shire wanted to hear, and everything she didn t experience at Utah. He was open-arms, she said. He told me, We want to make this fun for you. Basically, what it came down to was, why not give it another year? This team brought the fun back for me. They made me realize why I fell in love with this sport in the first place. I compete for me now. I really do. I got to the point at Utah where I was competing because everyone wanted me to and everyone had such high expectations. I had high goals for myself, but I didn t care as much as I do now. While Shire rediscovered her passion for the sport, Missouri nabbed one of the nation s elite gymnasts. As the 18thranked Tigers head into tomorrow night s Big 12 Conference championships in Norman, Okla., Shire leads the team with 19 event titles, including three all-around crowns. Earlier this week, Shire joined Missouri teammates Adrianne Perry and Alicia Hatcher in earning all-conference honors, which go to the four Big 12 gymnasts with the highest regional qualifying scores in each event. Shire and Perry earned their honors on the vault, while Hatcher s came on the bars. For Shire, who specialized on the vault and beam last year at Utah, her transition at MU was smoothed by the presence of several former teammates from the Great American Gymnastics Express club team. That group includes Perry, Hatch-

50 er and Liz Straatmann, Shire s best friend from Archbishop O Hara High School. Shire also credits the arrival of assistant coaches John Figueroa and Amy Smith, who, like Shire, were newcomers to Drass team this season. They understand me as a person and don t just look at me as their athlete, Shire said. I m Sarah, their gymnast. But they want what s best for me first. That s different. That s not how it s been in my past. It s always been, You re our athlete, and you need to succeed. Now it s like, Well, Sarah, how do you feel about this? Shire didn t get that vibe from the program at Utah. She doesn t specify what she didn t like about the experience, but David Shire said he blames himself for her unhappiness there. My job as her dad is to protect her, and I didn t, he said. I didn t see it coming. The things she had to go through and endure, I wish I had seen coming, and maybe we could have done something sooner. But to her credit, she stuck it out and tried to make it work. I feel bad that she had to go through that, but I think it made her stronger. One year and a long drive later, Utah couldn t seem further away. Not everyone gets a second chance, and Sarah s gotten an awesome opportunity at Missouri, David Shire said. It was a win-win for both parties. As a parent, her health, her happiness, her well-being is No. 1 with us. And now, we re back to that. After an unhappy freshman year at Utah, Hartsburg native Sarah Shire transferred to Missouri and rediscovered her love of gymnastics. Shire will compete in the Big 12 Championships tomorrow in Norman, Okla.

51 Gymnasts are crowd pleasers MU rebounds after shaky night on beam. By DAVE MATTER of the Tribune s staff Published Saturday, February 9, 2008 On one hand, Missouri s Beauty and Beast meet provides a boon of support for the MU gymnastics team as more than 6,000 fans came to the Hearnes Center last night to watch the Tigers gymnasts and wrestlers compete simultaneously at the second annual event. Then again, a raucous crowd and a nearby wrestling match don t create the most tranquil atmosphere while flipping across a 4-inch wide balance beam. After nearly setting the highest uneven bar score in team history, Missouri suffered two stumbles on the balance beam with uncharacteristic falls by two of its most consistent gymnasts. Minutes later, though, the crowd pitched in as both rebounded with their best floor exercise routines of the season. First, sophomore Danielle Guider shook off her fall on the beam and posted a season-best on the floor. Then junior Adrianne Perry did the same. The Tigers most decorated gymnast dazzled the crowd with a 9.9 routine, also her best mark of the year. With those efforts, the 14th-ranked Tigers chugged along with another season-high score, defeating Centenary I was really proud of both of them, Missouri Coach Rob Drass said after his team improved to 4-1 in dual meets, its best start to the season since They didn t just do good routines, they did their best routines of the year right after those falls. That s the way to come back. You don t just jump back on the horse. You get on that thing and ride it the way it s supposed to be done. After going without a major misstep in last week s home dual against Illinois-Chicago, Missouri s beam issues started with Guider, who fell off the apparatus midway through her routine after a series of flips. She scored just an Gymnasts normally perform the event accompanied by their own music in front of a hushed crowd. Neither was the case last night as Missouri s wrestling dual against Oklahoma got started just as Guider hopped on the beam. I maybe let the distractions knock me down, Guider said. I was a little off and let my nerves get to me instead of pulling up strong. Not 10 seconds into her routine, Perry lost her balance and fell off, too. The junior earned a 9.275, her lowest beam score since her freshman season. I was feeling a little bit shaky going into my routine, and I just couldn t get started right, Perry sad. I m usually pretty consistent on beam, so yeah, it was kind of surprising. Though it might have contributed to two falls, Drass said he liked the night s atmosphere, especially the crowd of 6,308, the 12th-largest home crowd for an MU gymnastics meet. It prepares us well for regional and national-type meets where it s a chaos meet, Drass said. After Perry s fall, Drass brought his team together for a quick huddle before the night s final rotation. Whatever he said seemed to work as five of MU s six floor entrants posted season-high scores, including both gymnasts who fell off the beam. Alex Gold (9.85), Ashley Khederian (9.85) and Sarah Shire (9.925) also scored their best marks of the season. Shire s score was a career-best and clinched her third all-around title of the season. The team s floor score (49.275) was its highest since last year s dual victory at Michigan. I used my energy from beam, from being disappointed, and went out on floor and did what I do every day in practice and nail my routine, Guider said. I liked the crowd for floor. The Tigers opened with an ordinary night on the vault, highlighted by Shire s meet-winning Things perked up on the bars as MU notched its highest score in four years, posting a , which fell just short of the team record of set in 2004.

52 Khederian (9.825), Perry (9.925) and Liz Straatmann (9.875) each earned the highest scores of their careers, while Becky Scholle (9.85) and Hatcher (9.875) matched their career-best scores. We ve been practicing so well on bars that we knew a big night was going to happen sooner or later, Perry said. I really thought all year we were a good bars team and was kind of surprised we haven t done as well as we could have, Drass added. If we can hit beam, if we can hit vault, if we can go 49-plus in every event, we can score in the 196s. And that s what it s going to really take to win a Big 12 championship and guarantee us a spot in the national championships. In winning the vault, beam and floor, Shire finished the night with a career-best all-around score of and has a team-best 14 event titles on the season. Nick King photos After struggling on the balance beam, Missouri s Danielle Guider scored a season-best in the floor exercise last night at the Hearnes Center. Below, Missouri s Adrianne Perry competes on the uneven bars. Perry scored in the event, and MU beat Centenary

53 Tigers aim higher with loaded Classic Fewer felines, more big names invited. By MATT NESTOR of the Tribune s staff Published Friday, February 29, 2008 The Tigers already know they ll be the top cats when the Missouri gymnastics team hosts the Cat Classic at 6:30 tonight in the Hearnes Center. Adrianne Perry and the 14th-ranked Missouri gymnastics team will host No. 4 Michigan, No. 22 Ohio State and California in tonight s Cat Classic. But they ll be looking to prove they re one of the top cats in the nation as well. In recent years, Missouri has relied less on inviting teams with cat-themed nicknames to the Cat Classic and more on increasing the overall competition. And this year s event will pit the 14th-ranked Tigers up against one of the nation s best. No. 4 Michigan will join No. 22 Ohio State and California at the four-team competition. The Wolverines are the highest ranked team to compete in the 28-year-old event and the first top-10 team since Arizona in This means tonight s meet will give Missouri a chance to see how it measures up right now with a nod toward competition in the future. The quad setup reflects what the Tigers will see in the Big 12 Championships and in the NCAA Regionals. I think it ll be good to compete against them, see where we stand, Missouri junior Adrianne Perry said. I definitely think we re going to be in the same ballpark as them. We ll see who hits for a big meet this weekend. Just having lots of very talented teams come in here, see where we stand I think it will just help us prepare for bigger meets toward the end of the season. A perennial championship contender, the Wolverines finished 11th at last season s NCAA Championships, their first finish outside the top 10 since Michigan is led by two-time All-American Lindsey Bruck, who has won three all-around titles this year, including a season-high last week against North Carolina State. We know we need to hit a really good meet to beat Michigan, Missouri senior Ashley Khederian said, but I think we can do it, especially being at home with the crowd on our side. The Tigers are coming off a competitive meet against sixth-ranked Oklahoma. The Tigers was their second highest of the season and all-arounders Perry and Sarah Shire both topped the Sooners third-ranked Kiara Redmond- Sturms. Perry has posted a this season in winning three all-around titles, while Shire hit a against Centenary at the Beauty and the Beast meet. Those kinds of scores has the Tigers believing they will compete with Michigan. I think we re going to surprise people. We re not that far off. We might stay right with them, Shire said. Hopefully, we can put all the pieces together and have a good performance, have a good showing and be right up there with them. Making its first Cat Classic appearance, Ohio State will be led by freshman Rebecca Best, who holds the Buckeyes top scores on the vault, the floor and the all-around. California has lost six straight duals in Pac-10 competition, but the future looks bright for sophomore Sophia Hocini, who has posted the team s second-highest vault and all-around scores.

54 Shire feels at home Hartsburg native helps MU top ISU. By DAVE MATTER of the Tribune s staff Published Saturday, January 19, 2008 Sarah Shire hopped on the balance beam last night to a song that couldn t have been more appropriate for the sophomore transfer who was making her home debut as a Missouri gymnast. As Daughtry s rocker ballad Home played for the Hearnes Center crowd, Shire s homecoming followed its storybook path - until she fell off the beam. No worries for the former Utah Ute, though. The Tigers most valuable import redeemed herself on the next rotation, closing the dual meet with the best performance of the night on the floor exercise, scoring a Shire s home debut, plus that of three other Missouri newcomers, boosted the 12th-ranked Tigers to a victory over Iowa State in the Pink Out, the team s fourth-annual benefit event sponsored by the Ellis Fischel Cancer Center. Both teams were decked out in pink as proceeds from ticket sales were donated to breast cancer research. It s good to finally put on that black in gold, Shire said, or in tonight s case, pink. Missouri s score eclipsed its total from last weekend s dual victory at Bowling Green (194.1), which was MU s secondbest season-opening score in team history. We re rolling pretty good right now, Missouri Coach Rob Drass said. What s nice is we ve yet to max out. We ve got the horses this year. It s just a matter of getting them a little more fine-tuned. Aside from her slip on the beam, Shire has been the star of the young season. The Hartsburg native also tallied the night s highest score on the vault (9.90), which matched her career-best, adding to last week s victory in the all-around competition. Last season, Shire helped lead Utah to a second-place finish at the NCAA Championships, specializing on the beam and vault for the national powerhouse program. But after the season, Utah Coach Greg Marsden delivered a surprise phone call to Drass, who had recruited Shire the year before. Marsden told Drass that Shire had been thinking about coming back to her home state. It brightened my whole day, Drass recalled. I was like, Holy crap, look what just fell into our lap. We did the recruiting job early on, but you finish second and you think you re done. Usually you don t get that second chance. We did, she did, and we re both making the best of it now. Shire, who turns 20 today, said it wasn t necessarily an easy decision to transfer, but she knew she would be surrounded by familiar faces at Missouri. She had previously trained at Great American Gymnastics Express in Blue Springs along with MU gymnasts Adrianne Perry, Alicia Hatcher and Liz Straatmann. It s been amazing coming home, Shire said. I feel like I belong. I m with my family, my closest friends. This university has welcomed me, and I ve always been a Tiger fan. Now I m grateful for the decision. I think the rest is going to be a sweet story over the next couple of years, Drass said. She s very happy, and this crowd is going to be very supportive of her. Drass was especially pleased with Shire s performance on the floor, which came just a few minutes after her slip on the beam. That s a sign of a true champion, he said. It s all there. It s just a matter of really getting her to feel completely rested. When you re doing the all-around, she and Perry are both going to have those kind of nights. When you take that kind of beating every week in all four events, sometimes it takes its toll. Hatcher gave the crowd of 2,766 plenty to cheer, too. She topped last week s score on the uneven bars and notched a 9.8, the best score of the night in the event. She did the same on the next rotation, scoring a meet-best on the beam. Perry didn t win an individual event but was solid throughout and won the all-around competition, totaling on

55 all four events, better than runner-up Nikki Dilbert of Iowa State, who scored , and Missouri s Ashley Khederian, who took third with Missouri s other newcomers added to the scoring, too. Freshman Alex Gold matched Perry for second on the vault, scoring a 9.85, while fellow freshman Lisa LaPerriere added a on the vault. On the floor, freshmen Gold (9.725) and Lauren Stephenson (9.675) chipped in. Missouri s home crowd was the third-largest in team history for a meet other than the annual Cat Classic. With another local product added to the lineup, Drass hopes to see more similar crowds the rest of the season. That was one of the biggest smiles on my face, he said. Missouri s Sarah Shire competes in the floor exercise in last night s victory over Iowa State at the Hearnes Center. Shire won the floor exercise with a score of

56 A slamming event Mizzou wrestling and gymnastics compete side by side Story by Shane Epping Published: Feb. 6, 2008/Mizzou Wire At the 165-pound weight class, No. 2 ranked Mizzou wrestler Nicholas Marable takes down No. 5 ranked Oklahoma State wrestler Jake Dieffenbach for a 3-1 win in overtime on Jan. 19. Photo by Shane Epping. When the Hearnes Center is rocking, don t be afraid to come knocking. Just before Valentine s Day, Beauty and the Beast arrives in Columbia but this show won t be a musical. On Friday, Feb. 8, the Tiger gymnastics team will compete alongside the Mizzou wrestling squad at Hearnes for the second annual combined event. Gymnastics initiates the affair at 6:30 p.m., and wrestling keeps the passion alive at 7:30 p.m. Action will overlap for about an hour while gymnasts take on Centenary College and wrestlers battle the University of Oklahoma. Last year s crowd for this event included more than 6,000 non-secret admirers. Everybody talked about what a great night it was and how much fun it was to bring the whole family, wrestling Coach Brian Smith says. It s a big dual [meet] for us, and we d like to set a new attendance record. The No. 11 wrestling team has several top-10 grapplers in their respective weight classes this season, including Big 12 Wrestlers of the Week Nicholas Marable (Jan. 28) at No. 2 and Max Askren (Jan. 14) at No. 9, plus Raymond Jordan at No. 4. Top-20 wrestlers include Mark Ellis, Michael Chandler and Josh Wagner. With wrestlers in more than half of the 10 total weight classes sporting a top-20 ranking, the team (7-3-1 overall, Big 12) treats every day like the national tournament. We re not afraid to talk about nationals, Smith says. Our goal is to win a national title. For Max Askren who started wrestling with his older brother, Ben, Mizzou s first national champion wrestling always has been a blend of pleasure and hard work, the perfect combination for this event. I just want to go out there and have fun, Askren says. But, of course, I never train to lose. Friday night s upcoming dual meet against Oklahoma will be followed by the team s last home match against Oregon State at 2 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 10. Gymnast Adrianne Perry has worked her way into the national spotlight and ranks 15th in the all-around. Photo courtesy of Intercollegiate Athletics. Mizzou gymnastics, like Mizzou wrestling, has made huge strides in national prominence in the past few years. The team is ranked at No. 14 currently. Adrianne Perry is ranked 15th in the nation in the all-around (a combination of events), and Sarah Shire ranks 12th in the nation in the floor event. Admission for Beauty and the Beast is $5 for adults, $3 for children or free with two canned food items for the Central Missouri Food Bank.

57 C-C grad a leader on Mizzou gymnastics team By Stephen Tobey Wed Mar 05, 2008, 02:38 PM EST CONCORD - Just about every athlete hopes to have the kind of senior year Ashley Khederian is having. In her final season on the University of Missouri gymnastics team, the 2004 Concord-Carlisle graduate is doing her best gymnastics and the Tigers are having one of their best seasons. We re off to our best start, said Khederian in a phone interview before a recent practice. We hope to win the Big 12 meet and go to nationals. After placing second behind the fourth-ranked University of Michigan in last weekend s Cat Classic, the Tigers were ranked 15th in the country. Khederian has competed in the all-around in every meet this season and has an average score of and a high of At one point, she was ranked 18th in the country. It s a long way from where she was when she first arrived on the Columbia, Mo. campus, but the transformation was not a complete surprise. When she first came here, she had a lot of skills, said Missouri coach Rob Drass. Her consistency and form was not where we liked to see it. We had to clean some things up, but she s become a lot more consistent and she s become a team leader. To fulfill her potential, Khederian put in a lot of work, and worked harder than ever while preparing for this season. It was a different kind of off-season, Khederian said. We have two new assistant coaches [John Figueroa and Amy Smith] who really pushed us and cracked down. Also, in the past, I was working to get back to where I was before I was injured and this year, I didn t have to do that. I could just keep getting better. Khederian missed much of her sophomore season with an ankle injury, then worked her way back to full strength during her junior year. I guess I had a sophomore slump, she said. I had bone chips in my ankle. It was tough because I had never been hurt before. Over the course of her collegiate career, Khederian s mental approach also changed. I used to have my best performances in practice; now I have them in meets, Khederian said. I just changed my outlook. I felt more comfortable and realized that I make the decisions about how I m going to perform. Before, when I was competing it felt like an out-of-body experience. Now, I decide what I want to do and I know I have control over it. The Tigers average around 3,000 fans at their home meets. Some meets on the road don t draw crowds that are that big, Khederian said. We love the crowds and the feeling of competing in front of them. One meet drew 6,000 spectators and was held in an unusual setting. The meet, called Beauty and the Beast, featured the gymnasts competing at the same time as the Missouri wrestling team. It was a little distracting, Khederian said. They started an hour later and they have a different announcer than we do. Sometimes, he talked over our routines, but when we get to the Big 12 meet, we ll be used to the kind of distractions we ll face. The Tigers have three more dual meets left. This Saturday, they ll travel to the University of Illinois. The final home meet is on March 21 against Arizona State University. The Big 12 championships are March 29 at the University of Oklahoma. The NCAA Regionals are on April 12 and if Missouri qualifies, the NCAA championships are April 28 at the University of Georgia. When the Tigers season ends, so does Khederian s life as a gymnast. It s a life that began when she was 5. She worked her way up to Level 10 (one level below elite) and competed in national Junior Olympic events. She has never competed in any other sports. I know a lot of people have a hard time with it, said Khederian about her future life as an ex-gymnast, but I have an

58 identity other than as an athlete and I have other interests. Khederian will earn her degree in marketing in December or in May She hopes to stay involved in sports, perhaps as an agent, or get into the apparel industry. She may move back to Massachusetts. She may stay in Missouri or move elsewhere. She enjoys life in the college town located midway between St. Louis and Kansas City, but keeps her identity as an Easterner. I have a teammate who is from New Jersey and everyone always asks us why we look so serious, Khederian said. It s just the way we are. When Khederian calls it a career, she ll miss some things about gymnastics and there will be some things she won t miss. I ll miss my teammates, she said. I ll miss tumbling and vaulting. I ll look forward to being able to just go out to lunch and not having practice. I won t miss waking up and hurting. The memories Khederian will have from her time as a Missouri Tiger, however, will be positive. I don t regret it at all, she said. Concord-Carlisle graduate Ashley Khederian competes in the floor exercise for the University of Missouri

59 Following the lead of Brady s bunch Khederian, Tigers show dominance. By DAVE MATTER of the Tribune s staff Published Saturday, February 2, 2008 Last night s meet had just ended when Missouri gymnast and Massachusetts native Ashley Khederian turned her attention to the weekend s next big event. Oh yeah, they re going to win. Patriots by 10, she proudly predicted in the Hearnes Center interview room, of course referring to the New England Patriots, tomorrow s Super Bowl XLII participant, who play their home games about 40 miles south of her hometown of Carlisle, Mass. And then the Celtics are going to win it all, too. In the style of her favorite football team, Khederian s 15th-ranked Tigers efficiently cruised through their latest challenge last night, getting the most out of its balanced and deep lineup to outscore Illinois-Chicago In what Khederian called the team s most complete meet of the season, the Tigers (3-1) overcame a sluggish start to set its season-high score for the fourth consecutive meet. We put up 24 competitive routines and hit on all 24, Missouri Coach Rob Drass said. That s what we want to do every time out. That s what s we call the big thing. If we get the big thing right, then you can fine-tune and count just small errors and a step here and a step there. The big thing for the Tigers of late has been their mastery of the balance beam. Last night was no exception as Danielle Guider, Sarah Shire and Adrianne Perry all earned season-high scores on the apparatus, including Perry s meet-best 9.9. Consistently the Tigers most troublesome event last season, a revamped lineup and the addition of assistant coach Amy Smith have made for a dramatic turnaround on the beam. Last year, Drass didn t have a full-time assistant to coach the beam, relying instead on former MU gymnast Lauren Schwartzman. Amy has really pushed us a lot, said Alicia Hatcher, who finished third on the beam with a She s really finetuning everyone and pushing us to that next level, like a national-caliber team would. Smith, a two-time All-American at UCLA in the late 90s, came to Missouri in the offseason after spending the last four years on Florida s coaching staff. With the Tigers, Smith has added weekly intrasquad competitions during practice to simulate the conditions and pressures of a weekend meet. Missouri came into last night s competition with the nation s 10th-ranked average beam score. Amy does a fantastic job of putting them under pressure sets, making them confident and helping them with internal dialogue so they re talking to themselves in their head as they re going through beam, Drass said. There s a quiet calm over there, and when you can approach beam like that, good things will happen. She s kind of a hard-ass, Khederian said, just hounding us all the time. We practice under so much pressure, so you ll know what it feels like. Smith s practice regimen paid off on the floor exercise, too, as the Tigers earned the top five scores of the night, led by Shire s That clinched the second all-around title of the season for the Utah transfer, whose all-around score marked a career-high. She edged teammate Perry (39.125) and Khederian (38.825) for the all-around honors. Shire also had the night s best score on the uneven bars, scoring a season-best That helped boost Missouri s uncharacteristically slow start on the vault, the night s first rotation. Several Tigers had problems making a firm landing, resulting in season-low scores for four of the six entrants, including Perry, whose was her lowest vault score in more than a year. Missouri s team score on the vault (48.60) was its lowest since March Drass didn t seem too concerned. He said the judges scores on the vault were tighter than usual, particularly tighter than last week s meet at Nebraska.

60 Freshman walk-on Lauren Stephenson won t need many repairs to her routine. In just her third official competition at MU, the Kansas City native nailed her attempt, scoring a career-best 9.8, enough to edge Shire and win the event. We get to see that vault in practice that we haven t seen in competition yet, Drass said. She ignited the whole team and really energized them. Missouri redshirt freshman Brooke Boehmer dismounts from the balance beam last night during MU s victory over Illinois- Chicago at the Hearnes Center.

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