Women's Gymnastics

Presented By Athens Regional

Back-to-Back NCAA Champions

Overall Record: 36-0

Undefeated NCAA Champs

2006 All-Americans

    First Team
    Courtney Kupets (AA, UB, BB, FX)
    Tiffany Tolnay (AA, V, BB)
    Katie Heenan (UB)
    Nikki Childs (BB)
    Kelsey Ericksen (FX)

    Second Team Katie Heenan (AA, V)
    Courtney Kupets (V)
    Kelsey Ericksen (V, BB)
    Nikki Childs (UB)
    Ashley Kupets (UB)
    Tiffany Tolnay (UB)

SEC Champions

One word says it all when discussing Georgia's national championship run of 2006...Domination. Just consider the benchmarks the program achieved during the season:

  • A seventh NCAA title. Only Utah has more with nine.
  • A 36-0 record for the fourth undefeated season in program history. No other team has done it once.
  • The team's 15th Southeastern Conference Championship, which is more than all other teams combined.
  • An undefeated record of 6-0 in the SEC regular-season schedule for the seventh time in 10 years. No other team in the last decade has done it once.
  • A total of 27 wins over teams that held a position in the nation's top 10 for at least one week.
"This team was very special," said head coach Suzanne Yoculan. "We set a goal at the beginning of the season to be undefeated. We wanted to strive for perfection, and that perfection was going to be and undefeated season. I'm just so proud of them to not only hand Georgia its seventh national championship, but also a fourth undefeated season. And that just really is a testament of their dedication and their work ethic and their focusing the entire season from the Cancun meet to the end."

Freshman Courtney Kupets, a member of the 2004 U.S. Olympic team, led the Gym Dogs on the scoreboard for much of the season. She won three NCAA individual titles in the all-around, balance beam and uneven bars, tying Hope Spivey (1991) for the Georgia single-season record. Her 40 scores of 9.9 or higher in one year are second in Georgia history to Karin Lichey's 42 from her senior season of 1999. She was named the SEC Freshman of the Year and was the only gymnast in the nation ranked in the top 5 on every event at the conclusion of the regular season.

Courtney Kupets and sophomore Katie Heenan anchored Georgia's beam lineup for much of the year, leading the team to last-rotation victories at venues such as Alabama, Auburn, Utah and Michigan. Wins at No. 3 Alabama and No. 6 Utah were by a combined total of .075.

Junior Kelsey Ericksen had another of her stellar seasons, peaking at the end of the year to win the SEC and Southeast Regional all-around competitions. In the Super Six Finals she had scores of 9.95 on three events. And junior Ashley Kupets battled a sore back all year only to hand the Gym Dogs big scores when they needed them at the end of the season, with 9.9s on the floor exercise at the SEC and NCAA Championships.

Sophomore Nikki Childs saved some of her best meets of the year for the post-season, notching season highs on bars and beam in the NCAA Regional and Prelim competitions.

Sophomores Megan Dowlen and Audrey Bowers are becoming regulars at handling pressure situations in big meets for the Gym Dogs. Dowlen set her career high of 9.875 on the vault in the final rotation of the Super Six. Bowers was a staple in the No. 2 spot of Georgia's beam lineup for nearly the entire season.

Along with Courtney Kupets, Abby Stack and Tiffany Tolnay helped create one of the best freshman classes in the nation. Tolnay was Georgia's top vaulter all year and added several big scores in the all-around. Stack competed in the leadoff spot for the Gym Dogs on the floor exercise most of the season, scoring a pair of 9.85s in the NCAA Regional and Super Six.

For the second year in a row, Georgia had just one senior in its championship run with Brittany Smith. She ended her career with three All-America awards, three SEC Championships and two national titles. She was the only gymnast on the 2006 roster with a perfect 10 in her career, scoring one on vault and floor during the '04 season.

Yoculan was named the national coach of the year for the fourth time in her 23-year tenure and again proved that she prepares her teams to rise to the occasion at the national championships. In both 2005 and 2006, Georgia's highest team scores came in the Super Six Finals on the last night of the season.

The Gym Dogs received 18 All-America certificates in Oregon to lead all teams. At the conclusion of the regular season the Gym Dogs were the top-ranked team on every event, something Georgia had not accomplished since 1998.

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