Feb. 22, 2012
LEXINGTON, Ky. - The University of Kentucky gymnastics team will hold its annual Pink Meet this weekend to support breast cancer research, education and treatment, when it plays host to a tri-meet with Southeastern Conference foe No. 15 Auburn and Pittsburgh on Friday at 7 p.m. ET inside Memorial Coliseum.
All fans attending the meet are encouraged to wear pink to support the Wildcats and a great cause. Fans wearing pink receive admission to the meet for $1, while UK Pink Meet shirts will be available for purchase. A portion of the ticket proceeds and all shirt sales will benefit breast cancer research, education and treatment at the Markey Cancer Center.
"The Pink Meet is always one of best meets of the year because of the impact that we can have in our community," UK head coach Tim Garrison said. "Hopefully we have a big crowd come out and help us support this great cause. It should be a fun night."
Kentucky (3-6, 0-5 SEC) is coming off a loss last weekend at No. 3 Georgia, posting a team score of 193.125. The showing against Georgia snapped UK's streak of two consecutive 195 or higher team scores on the road. The Wildcats had posted a 195.05 in their previous two road meets at Illinois-Chicago and LSU.
"Last weekend's disappointing performance ultimately had a positive impact on our preparation in the gym this week," said Garrison, who is in his first season with the program. "The team has shown an additional willingness to make the necessary changes to ensure they have the best possible chance for success in their competitive routines. I expect the team to be focused and ready to compete Friday."
Kentucky was led in the meet at Georgia by sophomore Kayla Sienkowski, who earned a career-best 9.825 to lead UK on balance beam. The high mark for Sienkowski placed her tied for first overall, securing her first career event title. Fellow sophomore Holly Cunningham continued to perform well on vault, leading the team for the third time in the last four meets with a score of 9.825. Sophomore Kayla Hartley led the team on floor exercise for the second consecutive week with a 9.8 mark.
The Wildcats enter the weekend ranked 27th in the nation in the latest GymInfo team rankings with a season average of 194.043. UK is the 24th-best vaulting team in the nation with an average of 48.764, while also sitting 27th on balance beam, and 31st on uneven bars and floor exercise.
Auburn (3-9, 0-5 SEC) is ranked 15th in the nation with a season average of 195.250. The Tigers are coming off their best meet of the year last weekend against the top-ranked Florida Gators, posting the second-best team score in school history of 196.875. AU is ranked in the top 25 in the nation on vault, uneven bars and balance beam.
Pittsburgh (4-4, 2-2 East Atlantic Gymnastics League) is coming off a 194.050-192.325 home win over Bowling Green on Saturday. Freshman Haley Sedgewich scored a career-high 38.65 in the all-around competition en route to be named the EAGL Rookie of the Week. The Panthers are ranked 38th in the nation by GymInfo with a season average of 193.158. Pitt's season-high team score is 194.550.
Live scores from the meet will be available online at UKathletics.com, while live video streaming will also be available through a premium subscription.
In addition to the Pink Meet festivities, the meet will serve as the annual UK Alumni Association Night, where free admission will be given to UK Alumni Association members with their membership card. After the meet, the entire UK gymnastics team will also be signing autographs, while fans can register to win an iPod nano, digital camera or a pink Michele watch.
Gymnastics parking is available in the following surface lots and parking structures:
Joe Craft Center North E-Lot - large lot located north of the Joe Craft Center, and accessible via Lexington Avenue or Rose Street
Memorial Coliseum E-Lot - located between Lexington Avenue and Martin Luther King Boulevard and south (towards Euclid) of the center drive lane.
Student Center Lot - off Euclid Ave
Handicapped Parking (first come-first served until full) is located in the northeast corner of the MLK South Lot, must have valid state-issued hang tag.
Good Samaritan surface Lot - accessible off Martin Luther King Boulevard
Parking Structure #5 - entrances off Limestone and South Upper
For more information on the Kentucky gymnastics team, follow "UKGymnastics" on Twitter and Facebook or visit UKathletics.com.