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SUU gymnastics: T-Birds aim to extend memorable season past NCAA regionals

Published: Thursday, April 8 2010 12:00 a.m. MDT

The Southern Utah University gymnastics team hopes to continue its best season ever with a strong performance in its regional meet this weekend in Morgantown, W.Va.

If the Thunderbirds finish among the top two teams, they'll earn a berth in the NCAA Championships.

This season has been top-notch from start to finish for the T-Birds, who finished things off at the end of March with what coach Scott Bauman called the greatest night of his career at the WAC Championships.

The team took away its first-ever WAC gymnastics conference crown, Elise Wheeler was named WAC gymnast of the year, Bauman was named WAC coach of the year, and Alyssa Click took home WAC freshman of the year honors.

Though the team had a fantastic regular season and brought home the WAC title, the T-Birds are not ready for their season to be over when they finish at West Virginia University on Saturday.

The T-Birds were ranked No. 18 in the nation when all of the RQS scoring was finally completed, and they became the final seeded team for the NCAA Gymnastics Regionals.

SUU is seeded third in the regional and will be joined by Stanford and Michigan, which finished the season tied at No. 6 in the nation, along with No. 28 North Carolina State, No. 29 Kent State and No. 31 West Virginia, the host team.

The T-Birds were a little disappointed not to be able to go to the University of Utah to give their fans a chance to see them compete at regionals, but they're thrilled to be seeded and to have a shot at heading off to the NCAA Championships scheduled April 22-24 in Gainesville, Fla.

Morgantown Regional

At West Virginia University

1. Stanford

2. Michigan

3. Southern Utah

4. North Carolina State

5. Kent State

6. West Virginia

e-mail: jolsen@desnews.com

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