NORMAN – The Sooners will head to Arizona for the second time this season for their final regular season match-up before the conference championship. OU will head to Tempe to take on host Arizona State in a tri-meet with Boise State on Friday at 8 p.m. CT.
DOUBLE THE VICTORIES, DOUBLE THE FUN
In a battle between No. 1 Michigan and No. 2 Oklahoma, it was the Sooners who came out on top with a 198.475-197.900 victory on Feb. 4. The Sooners handed Michigan its first loss of the season as they posted the second-highest score in program history. The uneven bars squad shattered the program record with a 49.825 as four Sooners earned a 9.975 in the rotation. Jordan Bowers scored a perfect 10 on vault, the first of her career and third by a Sooner this season.
On March 6, the Sooners posted their nation-leading fifth score of 198 or better in quad meet victory over TWU, SEMO and Air Force as they tallied a 198.075. The Sooners have now posted back-to-back scores of 198-plus twice this season. The Sooners swept the event titles with Bowers taking home a pair. Bowers earned the title on vault with a near-perfect 9.975 and bars with a 9.95. Ragan Smith earned the title on beam with a near-perfect 9.975. Four Sooners shared the floor title with Danae Fletcher, Danielle Sievers, Smith and Carly Woodard earning matching 9.925s. Audrey Davis earned the all-around title with a 39.400.
BACK ON TOP
For the first time in 2022, the Oklahoma women’s gymnastics team is the No. 1 team in the nation. After posting back-to-back scores of 198-plus, including a season-best 198.475, the Sooners moved into the top spot with a 198.080 national qualifying score (NQS).
NQS is based on a team’s six best regular season scores, three of which must be away. The overall high score is eliminated, and the five remaining scores are averaged. NQS scores are used to determine seeding for NCAA regional competition in April. Michigan remained No. 1 with an NQS of 197.920. Florida was No. 3 (197.715) with Utah (197.685) and LSU (197.515) rounding out the top five.
On the events, the Sooners are No. 1 on bars (49.535) and beam (49.580), No. 4 on vault (49.420) and No. 5 on floor (49.550). The rankings were shaken up after big scores on the weekend with Florida moving up to No. 2 (197.970). Michigan fell from the top spot for the first time this season to No. 3 (197.950). Utah stayed at No. 4 (197.750) and Alabama and Auburn are currently tied for fifth (197.650).
WELCOME TO THE CLUB
On Feb. 4, Jordan Bowers joined an exclusive club as she became the fifth freshman in program history to earn a perfect 10. Bowers, who earned the mark on vault, joins teammate Olivia Trautman (floor, 2019) and former Sooners Brenna Dowell (bars, 2015), Maggie Nichols (vault, bars, beam, floor, 2017) and Anastasia Webb (beam, 2018). Bowers is the first freshman since 2019 to earn a perfect mark and first since Nichols in 2017 to do so on vault.
KINDLER VS. THE PAC 12
In 16 seasons, Kindler is 69-23 against the Pac-12, including a 34-2 advantage over the last five seasons. Over the past three years, the Sooners are 15-1 against Pac-12 schools. The Sooners will face five Pac-12 schools during the 2022 season including Utah (Jan. 14), Arizona (Jan. 22), Stanford (Jan. 22 & Feb. 19), Washington (Feb. 19) and Arizona State (March 11). In 2021, the Sooners were 4-0 against the Pac-12.
YOUNG AND HUNGRY
Of the 240 routines competed so far by the Sooners, 139 have been performed by underclassmen. That means 58 percent of routines competed are being done by freshmen and sophomores. At least one freshman has competed on vault, bars and floor in every meet this season. A freshman has appeared on beam in six of 10 meets.
The vault lineup is the youngest lineup for the Sooners as only one upperclassman, Allie Stern, has competed in the lineup this season. Every other athlete who has competed at least one vault for the Sooners has been a freshman or sophomore. Bars and floor have featured at least four underclassmen, and sometimes five, every week this season.
Beam, however, is the lineup with the most experience with seniors Carly Woodard and Olivia Trautman and juniors Jenna Dunn and Ragan Smith being staples in the lineup. With Trautman’s return to the lineup on Feb. 19, four of the six competing athletes are upperclassmen.
Individually, at least two Sooners are ranked on every event with at least one in the top 10 on all four events and the all-around. Audrey Davis is the lone Sooner ranked in the all-around with a 39.485 NQS, good for No. 9 in the country. On vault, Jordan Bowers took over the top spot after earning her first career perfect score to give her an NQS of 9.965. Katherine LeVasseur is ranked No. 6 with a 9.930 NQS. A trio of Sooners are ranked on bars with Audrey Davis coming in at No. 2 (9.945), Bowers at No. 11 (9.925) and Karrie Thomas at No. 20 (9.910). The No. 1 beam squad in the nation boasts three top-20 athletes with Ragan Smith holding the No. 1 spot with a 9.980 NQS. Carly Woodard is seventh (9.935) and LeVasseur is 20th (9.910). On floor, Smith is ranked No. 10 (9.940) and Bowers is 16th (9.925).
TO 198 AND BEYOND
Since 2016, OU has totaled 42 scores of 198 or better and has 48 such scores in program history. Of those 48, only 18 have been earned at home with the other 30 all coming at road or neutral sites. Thirteen of those scores have come in regional or national competition, including a 198.475 mark at the 2019 NCAA Athens Regional which is the second-highest road score in NCAA history. In 2018, OU set the NCAA record with 10 scores of 198 or better in a single season. OU has more scores of 198 in the last eight years than any other program has in their entire history.
Through 10 weeks of the season, the Sooners have posted 124 scores of 9.9 or higher. With 240 routines competed, that means 52 percent of the routines have scored a 9.9 or higher this season. OU has put up double-digit marks of 9.9 or higher in eight of 10 meets this season, including a season-best 17 against Michigan on March 4.
Of the nation’s top totals this season, the Sooners hold three of the top 10 marks. The Sooners boast the No. 5 score (198.475), No. 7 score (198.200) and No. 8 score (198.175). Five schools appear in the top 10 with Michigan, Florida, Auburn and Utah all holding at least one of the top 10 scores.
The Sooners will head to Denver, Colo., for the 2022 Big 12 Championships. OU, Denver, Iowa State and West Virginia will face off on Saturday, March 19, on ESPNU for the title.