Posts Tagged ‘Kristen Smyth’

New NCAA roles for Durante, Dantzscher

October 23, 2008

David Durante will be an assistant coach at Stanford this season.

David Durante will be an assistant coach at Stanford this season.

With the Olympics over, it’s time to start thinking about the college season. 2008-09 will be filled with familiar faces, although in different roles than in the past.

Olympic alternate David Durante has accepted a position as one of Stanford’s assistant coaches. By the accounts of all who have met him, Durante is a hugely likable and personable fellow, and college coaching should suit him. He’s just one more talent in Stanford’s already stocked corner. The Cardinal may be out for revenge this year after last year’s home NCAA loss to Oklahoma.

2000 Olympian Jamie Dantzscher has signed on to be an assistant coach with Arizona State (Stanford head coach Kristen Smyth got her coaching start the same way.) Despite the talents of Tia Orlando, Nicole Harris (before she retired mid-season) and Tiana Jean, the Sun Devils languished at the bottom of the Pac-10. Seven of the Sun Devils’ 17 gymnasts this year are freshmen.

Dantzscher was something of a showstopper in the NCAA. Check out this floor routine from the 2003 NCAA Championships:

Rick at Gymnastics Coaching reports that Shayla Worley visited Georgia but hasn’t made a final decision about her NCAA future. Many people think because she’s from Florida she’d go with the Gators. With Worley on their team, they might finally get that elusive NCAA title they’ve been so close to for the past three years.

Vote for where you think Shayla will go at Difficulty Plus Execution.

WOGA’s Christa Tanella, however, has already made her choice.

Three gymnasts – Christa Tanella, Kati Breazeal and Noel Couch – said they have told Georgia associate head coach Jay Clark that on signing day, Nov. 12, they will sign letters of intent to attend Georgia.

Another strong class for the Gym Dogs. Suzanne Yoculan or not, they’re sure to stay strong.

Tabitha Yim: Pac-10 Gymnast of the Year

April 1, 2008

Tabitha YimA first for Stanford, according to CSTV.com.

A bit surprising, given the great athletes Stanford has had in the past, including Lindsey Wing, Lise Leville, Caroline Fluhrer, Natalie Foley and Larissa Fontaine.

Last weekend Yim won the All-Around competition at the Pac-10 Championships, the fourth individual Pac-10 title earned in her career. Yim is currently an 11-time All-American.

“Tabitha has been through so much in this sport,” said head coach Kristen Smyth. “She has grown and matured tremendously here at Stanford and has become our team leader. She is one of the most charismatic performers of all time and she definitely deserves the honor. We are so excited for her and for this program, as this is our first Gymnast of the Year honor.”

Tabitha Yim, 2008 Stanford vs. Georgia, Floor Exercise:

A Canadian, a Czech and an American sign with Stanford

November 29, 2007

Canadian national team member Alyssa Brown, Czech national team member Nicole Pechanec and WOGA standout Catherine Nguyen have all signed letters of intent to compete for Stanford in during the 2008-09 season, Cardinal head coach Kristen Smyth announced last week.

Brown recently told International Gymnast Magazine she’s planning to go for one of the two spots on the Canadian Olympic team. According to Stanford’s press release, Brown has already secured an invitation to the 2008 American Cup.

Alyssa Brown, 2007 Canadian Championships, Uneven Bars:

Pechanec, who trains at the Parkettes in Pennsylvania under Bill and Donna Strauss and mom Yvette, brings a lot of international experience. Representing the Czech Republic, Pechanec won the balance beam title at the 2007 Ostrava World Cup and was a team member at the 2006 and 2007 World Championships.

Nicole Pechanec, 2006 World Championships, Uneven Bars (note the unusual third release move):

Nguyen trains at WOGA under Evgeny Marchenko and Natalya Boyarskaya. Her sister Christine is a sophomore competitor for the University of North Carolina.

Catherine Nguyen’s stylish floor exercise from day one of the 2007 U.S. Championships:

In other NCAA news, the University of Washington, looking to rebuild its once dominant position in the Pac-10, has signed four for 2009. Coach Joanne Bowers, a transplant from the University of Michigan, already has an impressive freshman class this year consisting of Karen Cain, Danielle Henderson, Samantha Walior, Haley Bogart and Kristen Linton.

The Huskies will be adding Lauren Eller, Hatsune “Hats” Akaogi, Amanda Cline and Ruby Engreitz to their lineup in 2009.