Utah State gymnastics Coach Ray Corn suspected that vaulting may have cost the Aggies their first-ever trip to the NCAA championships last spring when they were inconsistent in that event in the regional. Balance beam has always been something of a stumbling block for the Aggies, too.
Corn made those two events paramount in his recruiting. He wanted all-arounders who could improve his club overall in vault and beam. Now he's got six freshmen to choose from, and it looks like Cami Card, Brenda Scholl and Heidi Pfannenstiel can do the job in vault, and Card, at least, will help immediately on beam.The results of his recruiting will be on display Monday night in Utah's Huntsman Center at 7:30 when Utah State and Iowa visit the Lady Utes in the season opener.
In last Monday's Aggie intrasquad meet, Card led all scorers with a 36.65 all-around total, 9.2 on beam and 9.45 in vault. Scholl scored 9.6 and Pfannenstiel 9.5 on vault. Scholl totaled 35.60 all-around.
"On the negative side," said Corn, "we found out that we still need to work on our executive and our presence on the floor. We also need to improve our conditioning."
The other freshmen on the Aggie team are Kristen Wyles, Michelle Godi and Missy Edson.
Corn also has four sophomores - Barb Zahl, Stephanie Green, Melanie Graff and Natalie Cannon - to go with junior Tana Davis and seniors Chris Bammert and Karen Beck.
Zahl is expected to miss this meet with an elbow dislocation, but Corn will still have 13 to choose from. He says that team depth may help this season as the Aggies have 13 meets.
He hopes to beat last year's 15-9 record but has a schedule that includes national runner-up Utah twice, No. 5 Georgia, a good Arizona team and up-and-coming clubs like Oregon State and Stanford.
Following the Utah meet, the Aggies go to Denver University Jan. 27 before opening at home Feb. 6 against Brigham Young.