TEMPE, Ariz.—The 25th-ranked Arizona State women’s gymnastics team opens the season, Saturday, hosting a tri-meet against Sacramento State and San Jose State at 7 p.m. MT in Wells Fargo Arena.
The Gym Devils field a deep team with 21 of their 24 line-up positions returning for 2014. Last season the Sun Devils finished in third place at the Corvallis Regional, upsetting host team and Pac-12 Champion Oregon State. The team’s third-place finish was the highest for Arizona State since the 2006 season.
Leading the Sun Devils will be the four upperclassmen: senior Sammie Seaman, and juniors Brianna Gades, Morgan Steigerwalt and Natasha Sundby. Seaman, who was nursing a foot injury for most of the season, is eager to make an immediate impact on the Gym Devil line-up.
Sundby, who anchored both vault and floor, received scores of 9.900 in each event last season to record the highest scores for the Gym Devils last season. The junior, from El Dorado Hills, Calif., was also the first Sun Devil to win a Pac-12 weekly honor for Arizona State since 2009 with her win on floor over then top-ranked UCLA.
Last weekend Sacramento State hosted a five-team meet, including San Jose State, to open up the 2014 season. The Hornets recorded a season-opening score of 194.400, just four tenths shy of meet champion Stanford. Sacramento State also dominated on beam, recording a meet-high score of 49.050.
At the meet, San Jose State scored a total of 193.325 to open the season. Julia Greer led the way for the Spartans, receiving 9.850’s on beam and floor to tie for first in each event.
Head coach John Spini enters his 34th season as the head coach of the Gym Devils and is the longest tenured coach in ASU history. Spini’s teams have qualified for 21 NCAA Championships and have made a total of 32 postseason appearances. Following the 2014 season, Spini announced he will retire retire as head coach of the women’s gymnastics team.