Posts Tagged ‘Allyse Ishino’

NCAA report!

January 17, 2009

Michigan won over Kent State and North Carolina State (194.325-193.525-191.15).

Alabama won handily over Kentucky 195.825-194.075. (Bama’s Ricki Lebegern took the all-around with 39.275. Other notable scores: Crimson Tide freshman Ashley Priess, last week’s SEC Freshman Gymnast of the Week, scored a 9.925 on uneven bars. Bama’s Morgan Dennis delivered a 9.9 on vault and Priess, Alabama’s Geralen Stack-Eaton and Kentucky’s Heather Hite tied for the beam title with 9.875.) Only three gymnasts — UW’s Ashley Houghting (floor), Stanford’s Allyse Ishino (bars) and Stanford’s Shelley Alexander (vault) broke 9.9.

Stanford coasted through a quad meet with Washington, Sacramento State and Seattle Pacific University, winning 196.45-194.25-193.55-188.425. No Stanford gymnast competed in the all-around, which was taken by Sacramento State’s Marina Borisova (a very respectable 39.175).

Georgia ruled LSU 196.850-195.950. This was undoubtedly a huge improvement for the Gym Dogs, who opened up their season last week against West Virginia without breaking 196, disappointing outgoing coach Suzanne Yoculan. Georgia’s Courtney Kupets swept the first place finishes (to be fair, underrated LSU senior Ashleigh Clare-Kearney tied with Kupets on vault), tallying 39.65 in the all-around. Is she the best NCAA gymnast ever? It gets harder and harder to argue.

Behind Kupets and Clare-Kearney, Susan Jackson (LSU) and Tiffany Tolnay (Georgia) also did extremely well here (Tolnay finsished second in the all-around with a 39.4).

Florida barely held off the surging Auburn team, scoring 49.5 on floor to beat the Tigers 196.5-196.25. The Gators overcame their lowest team beam total since 2006 (48.325, led by Corey Hartung’s 9.75). This makes no. 4 Auburn, who barely lost to in-state rival Alabama last week, like, the most successful 0-2 SEC gymnastics school ever. If they can keep this up, they’ll see action in the Super Six. (Florida senior Hartung won the all-around with a 39.475.)

Little siblings — big potential

November 25, 2008

Family acts are fairly common in gymnastics. Parents tote all their kids, not just one, to the gym to wrench out energy at a young age, stuff like that.

Seems like good gymnastics runs in families too — one need only look to the Hamms (Betsy Hamm, Paul and Morgan’s older sister, was an NCAA Champion for the University of Florida during the late 90s) and the Roethlisbergers (John’s big sis Marie was a contender for the 1984 U.S. Olympic team) and a few others (the Khorkinas, Svetlana and Yulia, the Dantzchers, Jamie, Jalynne and Janelle, the Mackies, Gael and Charlotte, and on and on) for affirmation.

Here are a few new faces with “old” names poised to make a splash during the coming quad (although whether their splash will be as big as those their siblings have made is TBD).

Dasha’s sis Natalia Joura, International Level 10, Floor Exercise:

Chellsie’s sis Skyler Memmel, 2008 PKI Elite Qualifier, Balance Beam:

The incredible Nailia Mustafina, younger sister of up-and-coming Russian junior Aliya Mustafina, 2008 WOGA Classic, Balance Beam:

On the men’s side, there’s Glen Ishino, Allyse’s younger brother.

Glen Ishino practices parallel bars in the Cal Bears gym:

Missed anyone? Drop me a comment.

Aleksas Trotter, 1986-2008

April 25, 2008

Aleksas TrotterThis morning came the news that montagemaker, blogger and photographer Aleksas Trotter died unexpectedly in Madison, Wis. on April 19.

He was 21.


Darlene Hill: Olympic sleeper now?

April 2, 2008

No post on this blog has had as many comments as one written in October about 18-year-old Darlene Hill, who trains at the Will-Moor School of Gymnastics in Mt. Laurel, N.J.

Will-Moor, by the way, has produced some very respectable alumni, including Arizona State’s Beate Jones and Stanford’s Alex Pintchouk.

But back to Hill. In October, some said she has Olympic potential. Others didn’t think so. All that was before she won floor at the Pacific Rim Championships last weekend.

The Pacific Rim is an interesting meet because it’s about the last time any Olympic contenders emerge from the woodwork if they haven’t already done so. In 2004, it was Allyse Ishino’s coming out party – after all, she beat Carly Patterson there.

Is the same true for Darlene Hill?

Darlene Hill, 2008 Pacific Rim Championships Team Finals, Floor Exercise:

Darlene Hill, 2007 Glasgow Grand Prix Event Finals, Uneven Bars:

Notes from the stands at the Pac-10 Championships

March 31, 2008

1. Stanford 197.000
2. Oregon State 196.550
3. UCLA 196.200
4. Arizona 195.725
5. California 193.400
6. Washington 193.375
7. Arizona State 191.925


Rebounding Georgia bests no. 5 Stanford

January 15, 2008

Georgia junior Courtney Kupets, via day, another top-five ranked team, and the Georgia Gym Dogs look back on track.

That’s the general consensus after Georgia defeated no. 5 Stanford in Palo Alto Jan. 13, 196.875-196.150. But it was the Cardinal that had the high team score on vault (49.275) and beam (49.15), while Georgia was tops on bars (49.225) and floor (49.3).

Georgia junior Courtney Kupets, who had some rare mistakes during Georgia’s season-opener at Utah Friday night, appeared more her usual self, winning the all-around with a 39.550. Georgia’s Tiffany Tolnay and Stanford’s Nicole Ourada tied for second with 39.3.

2004 Olympic hopeful-turned-Stanford Cardinal Allyse Ishino.Stanford sophomore Carly Janiga was best on beam with a 9.9. Grace Taylor won bars with a 9.9, Kupets took vault with a 9.925 and she, 2004 Olympic teammate Courtney McCool and Georgia newcomer Cassidy McComb shared top honors on floor, each with a 9.9.

Redshirt freshman Allyse Ishino, who was sidelined with blood clots in the lungs while training in 2006 made an impressive debut for the Cardinal, scoring a 9.875 on vault and a 9.9 on bars. Stanford senior Tabitha Yim, who has been the backbone of the team since 2005, only competed floor exercise (9.775.)

Ishino set to make Stanford debut

November 2, 2007

A year later than expected, Allyse Ishino is set to compete in a Cardinal leotard.

Allyse Ishino

The Stanford sophomore, who was Olympic alternate no. 1 in 2004, will make her Cardinal debut this winter after being sidelined with two pulmonary emboli (blood clots in the lungs) in late 2006, according to Stanford coach Kristen Smyth.

Although Ishino didn’t compete in 2007, she is listed on the roster as a sophomore, which makes me wonder if Stanford chose not to redshirt her last season.

Allyse Ishino, 2004 U.S. Championships Prelims, Floor Exercise:

In her 2008 preseason report, Smyth noted that “getting Allyse back is a real bonus.”

Ishino, who was fifth at the 2004 U.S. Championships and dropped back to level 10 while she prepared to go to Stanford, would add depth to any squad in the country.

Not that Stanford isn’t rather chalked with talent already. Its senior class — Tabitha Yim, Liz Tricase, Stephanie Gentry, Alex Pintchouk, Aimee Precourt and Lauren Elmore — is likely to be the most competitive in the country. The Cardinal, which graduated nobody last year, also boasts sophomore Carly Janiga and juniors Kelly Fee and Nicole Ourada and three freshmen.

That’s a lineup that rivals the Georgia Gymdogs. Stay tuned.

A comeback for Kupets?

October 17, 2007

It’s hard not to wonder if 2004 Olympian Courtney Kupets is thinking about going for Beijing.

Georgia's Courtney Kupets: Could a comeback be on the horizon?

Kupets, the 2003 U.S. Champion and 2004 U.S. co-champ, kept a low profile in 2005, training for college but not competing as an elite or level 10, the way former Olympic hopefuls Allyse Ishino and Carly Janiga did before heading to Stanford.

Kupets’s freshman year at the University of Georgia was nothing short of dazzling. In addition to being the SEC’s Freshman of the Year in 2006, Kupets captured the all-around title and was also first on uneven bars and balance beam at the NCAA Championships.

She was no less impressive in 2006, defending her NCAA all-around title and winning the national championship on vault as well. Georgia coach Suzanne Yoculan called her “the best gymnast I’ve ever coached, both mentally and physically.”

Only two years into her college career, Kupets has already racked up five NCAA titles. If she keeps this up, she’ll break former University of Kentucky Jenny Hansen’s NCAA title record. (Hansen, who competed for Kentucky, won eight NCAA titles from 1993 to 1995. In 2006, the NCAA honored Hansen as its most outstanding gymnast in 25 years of competition.)

Despite competing with a stress fracture in Athens in 2004, Kupets looked great then, and some argue she looks even better now. She’s still able to do almost everything she competed at the Olympics, and has even added new skills, like a toe-on Hindorff on bars and a gorgeous double layout dismount.

Courtney Kupets, 2007 Georgia vs. Arkansas, uneven bars:

Unlike Kupets, who’s remained mostly mum on the subject, Utah’s Ashley Postell has made noises about staging an elite comeback for Beijing. Postell, second to Kupets in the all-around at both the 2006 and 2007 NCAA Championships, was not in Athens in 2004, although given her 2003 performances she might have seemed like a lock for the team.

Some of Postell’s 2007 summer training videos, showing some beefed-up skills on vault and beam, were floated onto the internet, but did she not compete at the U.S. Championships.

According to Utah’s Deseret Morning News,

Senior-to-be Ashley Postell is still working on perfecting her international-style routines with an eye toward perhaps making the 2008 U.S. Olympic team, but a rolled ankle slowed her down for about three weeks and probably kept her from attempting to qualify for the 2007 national championships. Her vault, beam and floor routines, said Marsden, had come along to the point that she might have tried for one of the qualifying meets until the injury. Her intention was always to take it slowly and see how far she got before attempting a meet, and the 2002 world beam champion is still in that mode but now won’t do any elite competitions until after the 2008 Ute season next spring, Marsden said.

Postell said in an interview last year that one of her goals is to “Go to the Olympics.” In a seperate interview with a Utah newspaper, she said that in order to make that happen she would need more difficult tumbling on floor and to “about double” her bar routine.

Utah gymnast Ashley Postell.