Feb. 4, 2013
AUBURN - Fresh off three-consecutive meets on the road and two-straight season high scores, No. 15 Auburn gymnastics returns to Auburn Arena to face No. 19 Arkansas as a confident group.
"You can't replace confidence from what they did on the road," Auburn head coach Jeff Graba said. "In gymnastics, confidence is a big thing. You are doing a lot of crazy stuff, a lot of dangerous stuff, so confidence is big. You have to have to the confidence that you can do it well. They built that confidence up and I think that is what is going to show off on Friday. We are a much more polished team, because we went through some adversity on the road and did so well."
That adversity came in the shape of large hostile crowds, injuries to key lineup members and finally a dual event with a wrestling meet.
Auburn has seen different team members step up the last three weeks and that included sophomore Caryn Kadous at Missouri.
"We're really building on the interchangeable parts," Graba said. "If someone is dinged up, then we have others who can step in. Our depth is really starting to show. At Florida, Caryn [Kadous] didn't do anything and at this meet she did two events and did a really good job. That's really how things have to work. You have to train this way and prepare to have everyone healthy and have your premier routines ready for the last month. I feel like we took a big step forward."
Kadous came through with a career high 9.825 on balance beam and a season-best 9.75 in floor exercise.
Graba is optimistic that his squad can continue the momentum it picked up on the road and take it even further in its home confines.
"Hopefully, they will settle down and enjoy themselves in front of our home fans," the third-year head coach said. "That's the good thing about being at home. You have that advantage. We need to settle down and take the thing we learned on the road and bring them home."
Friday's meet is scheduled for 7 p.m. in Auburn Arena. Tickets are still available at www.AUBTIX.com or by calling 855-AUB-2010. Reserved individual meet tickets may be purchased, depending on availability, for $7. Adult General Admission tickets are available for $5 and Youth General Admission tickets are available for $2. The first 1,000 fans will receive a 2013 schedule magnet from Goodwill.
With high attendance expected, special parking shuttles will be available at parking lots on West Thach and the Facilities Division beginning at 6 p.m. and running continuously until 10 p.m.
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