Arizona's Randi Liljenquist to Compete at NCAA Championships
TUCSON, Ariz. Arizona sophomore Randi Liljenquist qualified as the No. 4 at-large seed in the all-around for the NCAA Women's Gymnastics Championships on April 13-15. Boise State University is the host institution for the championships, and competition will take place in the Pavilion Arena. Liljenquist, who is making her first trip to the NCAA Championships, is set to compete in the afternoon session of the all-around finals on Thursday, April 13, at 1 p.m., and will rotate with Georgia throughout the session.
Liljenquist's third-place all-around score of 39.275 at the NCAA Region III Championships last weekend was the fourth-highest regional qualifying score out of the 12 at-large competitors who are not on a qualifying team. Liljenquist's all-around score is her fifth-best mark this season, and she also won the regional beam title with a 9.900. Liljenquist tied for sixth on vault (9.850), tied for 20th on bars (9.700) and tied for seventh on floor (9.825). "Randi (Liljenquist) making it to nationals is just the culmination of a very good season," said Arizona head coach Bill Ryden. "She has made a lot of sacrifices, and she has worked very hard to get to this point."
Liljenquist, a 5-2 sophomore from Tucson, Ariz., made her all-around debut this season and has scored over the 39.000 mark in nine out of 13 meets. She has posted 39 top-five finishes and has won 16 first-place titles, including six career all-around titles. Liljenquist holds Arizona's top individual scores on bars (9.925), beam (9.925), floor (10.000) and in the all-around (39.525). She became only the fifth gymnast in school history to score a perfect 10.000 following her career-high floor performance on March 3 in the Michigan meet.
After only two years in the program, Liljenquist's career-high marks in all four events and in the all-around have earned her a place in the Arizona record books. Her career-high 39.525 in the all-around tied the No. 2 score in school history, and her career-high 10.000 on floor tied Heidi Hornbeek for the school record in the event. Liljenquist's career-high 9.925 on beam placed her in a tie for the third-best beam score, her career-high 9.925 on bars tied the fifth-highest Arizona score, and her career-high 9.850 on vault has moved her into a tie for the eighth-best Wildcat vault score.
"Randi is having a phenomenal year, and she has a very good chance of doing well at NCAAs because she is one of the best beam and floor workers in the entire country. She has a good draw, considering she will be rotating with Georgia, and I am confident in her abilities as a gymnast," Ryden said.
Arizona missed qualifying for one of the two regional team berths to the NCAA Championships after finishing fourth at the regional championships behind Nebraska, Louisiana State and Arizona State last weekend. The UA closed out the season 7-19 overall, and the Wildcats made their 14th-consecutive trip to the postseason.