Gymnastics Releases 2012 Schedule

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LEXINGTON, Ky. - After hiring Tim Garrison as its third head coach in program history in April, the University of Kentucky women's gymnastics team has released its 2012 competition schedule, featuring a home dual-meet with the 2011 NCAA National Champion Alabama Crimson Tide.

The Wildcats will kick off the Garrison Era with a four-team meet with Bowling Green State, Wisconsin-Oshkosh and 2011 NCAA National Finalist Oklahoma on Saturday, Jan. 7 at Memorial Coliseum. The meet will serve as the annual celebration to jumpstart UK's gymnastics season.

Including the season opener, Kentucky will host five meets throughout the 2012 season at Memorial Coliseum, including dual-meets with Southeastern Conference foes Alabama, Auburn and Florida. The Wildcats will welcome defending SEC Champion and NCAA National Champion Alabama to Lexington on Feb. 10, while Florida, which finished the 2011 season ranked seventh in the nation, comes to Memorial Coliseum on Jan. 20. Auburn, who finished the 2011 season ranked 19th in the nation, comes to the Bluegrass State on Feb. 24. The Auburn meet will be a tri-meet with Pittsburgh.  

"We are excited about the release of our 2012 competition schedule," Garrison said. "The athletes and coaches are working hard in the gym, knowing that the time and effort we put in now will make the difference when our season opens. Simply competing in the SEC is one thing, but being competitive is an entirely different set of standards and we intend to meet those standards. We are determined to represent this university and the Commonwealth of Kentucky with pride and at a high level of competitiveness."

Kentucky boasts a challenging road slate in 2012, traveling to face four teams that finished the 2011 season ranked in the top 20 of the GymInfo team rankings, including No. 9 Georgia (Feb. 18), No. 10 Arkansas (Jan. 13), No. 11 Illinois (March 2) and No. 20 LSU (Feb. 3). UK will also take its talents to Illinois-Chicago for a dual-meet on Jan. 28 and complete its regular-season slate at Centenary on March 17.

The SEC Championship will be held at the Gwinnett Center in Duluth, Ga., on March 24, while the NCAA regionals are scheduled for April 7 at six locations, including Fayetteville, Ark., Auburn, Ala., Champaign, Ill., Raleigh, N.C., Salt Lake City, and Seattle. The NCAA Championships will be April 20-22 at the Gwinnett Center in Duluth, Ga.

Before the season starts in early January, Kentucky will hold a "Meet the Team" intrasquad scrimmage at Memorial Coliseum on Friday, Dec. 2 at 7 p.m. ET. More information on the intrasquad scrimmage will be released at a later date.

The Wildcats finished the 2011 season ranked 25th in the nation. Kentucky posted a 10-19 record, including a 1-5 mark in SEC play. The Wildcats set two school records throughout the season, posting a 49.4 team score on vault against Ohio State and tying the school record on uneven bars with a 49.325 mark. UK completed the season at the NCAA Tuscaloosa Regionals, posting a score of 195.175, which was the highest NCAA Regional score in school history.

For more information on the Kentucky gymnastics team follow "UKGymnastics" on Twitter and Facebook or visit UKathletics.com.