April 22, 2010
GAINESVILLE, Fla. -The Missouri Tigers fought hard throughout the NCAA National Championship semifinal but were not able to finish in the top three to advance to Super Six. The team scored a 194.600 to finish sixth in the evening session. Senior All-American Sarah Shire (Columbia, Mo.) earned All-American first team honors on vault (9.925) and floor (9.900) and second team honors on bars to become Missouri's first four-time All-American.
The Tigers started the night with the bye before floor and took to the floor in the second rotation. Junior Alex Gold (Plano, Texas) started off Missouri at their first NCAA National Championship appearance with a 9.750 followed by a career-high tying 9.825 from freshman Tori Howard (Chesterfield, Mo.). Freshman Lauren Swankoski (Chadds Ford, Pa.) held down the middle of the lineup with a 9.700. Sophomore Mary Burke (Inverness, Ill.) earned a 9.750 to set up a 9.900 from Shire, a new Missouri NCAA floor record. The Tigers totaled a 48.925 on floor to get the meet started.
Missouri moved to vault for the third rotation where senior Becky Scholle (Chesterfield, Mo.) scored a 9.800, while Swankoski followed with a 9.775. Burke and Gold both hit huge vaults to each score a 9.850, respectively. Shire went last and once again set a new Mizzou NCAA record with a 9.925 to help the Tigers to a 49.200 total on vault.
After three rotations, and all teams having competed two events, Missouri sat in third (98.125) behind Alabama (98.675) and Stanford (98.250) and ahead of Florida (98.075), Michigan (97.600) and Arkansas (97.125), putting them in Super Six qualifying position.
After a bye, Missouri took to the bars with sophomore Allie Heizelman (Cypress, Texas) going first and posting a 9.775. Swankoski went second with a 9.750 followed by a 9.800 from Scholle. Burke posted a 9.825 followed by 9.875 from Shire, yet another Missouri NCAA National Championship record. Freshman Sandra Ostad (Oslo, Norway) closed it out for the Tigers with a 9.700. Missouri scored a 49.025 on bars to hold a 147.150 going into the sixth and final rotation.
Senior Brooke Boehmer (Overland Park, Kan.) led the Tigers off on their last event with a 9.700. Swankoski scored a 9.525 followed by a 9.675 from Gold. Burke and Shire closed it out for the Tigers with a 9.250 and a 9.300, respectively. Missouri totaled a 47.450 on beam to finish their first trip to NCAA nationals with a 194.600.
Alabama (196.850), Florida (196.775) and Stanford (196.300) finished first through third, respectively, and earned the right to move on to the Super Six Friday night, while Michigan (195.700) and Arkansas (195.600) finished fourth and fifth.
Shire's All-America first team honors on vault and floor qualified her to compete in the individual event finals. The event finals will be held on Saturday, April 24 at 5 p.m. (CST).