Oregon acrobatics and tumbling takes first home meet in win against Hawaii Pacific


Coming off of its season-opening win against Concordia, Oregon acrobatics and tumbling kicked off their first home meet with a victory against Hawaii Pacific. The day ended 267.595-280.100 favoring the Ducks at Matthew Knight Arena on Friday night.

The Ducks won the compulsory event in rocky fashion and recorded a score of 38.45, while 38.30 was put up by Hawaii Pacific. The Ducks swept the first two rounds, winning each heat.

“We definitely started off rough in the compulsory event, but we talked about leaving that in compulsory’s, and turning it around going in to the next part of the meet,” head coach Keenyn Won said. “I think the girls had a ton of energy tonight. We got to execute all the things we wanted to execute, and we worked on a lot of changes from our meet on Monday.”

In the second event, the Ducks kept with trend of sweeping heats, and went on to extend their lead to a flat 68, as the Sharks trailed with a total of 66.85

Before going into halftime, Oregon took the pyramid event with a nearly perfect score of 29.50. The Sharks attempted a comeback but finished the pyramid event with a score of 28.40. The Ducks put together a first half total of 97.50, and the Sharks followed with a score of 95.25.

“I definitely felt like we were on the same page,” Katie Bachman said. “We felt really connected, and we had a really good spirit out there. We weren’t perfect tonight, but we definitely can build on this.”

After hitting their stride early in the first half, the Ducks kept that same pace straight away to begin the second half.

The Ducks swept heats yet again in the toss event, the final score being 29.10-27.50. This advanced team meet totals to 122.75- 126.60 favoring Oregon.

Oregon saw its first slip up in the tumbling event, where in heat one of duo’s, freshman Caitlynn Emick slipped off of the end of the mat after her last rotation. It was not long before the Ducks regained balance in heat two, putting together a nearly perfect trio score. Oregon did just the same in its quad heat of tumbling.

The Sharks took its first heat in the first heat of the tumbling event, with a score of 8.95 over Oregon’s 8.80. Besides first heat, the Ducks took all other heats in the tumbling event.

The team event was by far the most energized performance of the night. The Sharks of Hawaii Pacific and Oregon finished with the score, 97.20-90.77 in the Ducks’ favor.

The final meet total left the Ducks towering the Sharks 280.100-267.595. This marks the second win of the Ducks’ 2018 season, and the team is still looking forward to all of the competitors they have yet to face.

“We want to take every competitor,” Won said. “We told ourselves we are going to continue to increase our scores every single meet. That is our goal. …We have two hard weeks ahead of us before we see Baylor.”

With nothing but preparation time, the Ducks now begin training for the team’s next meet in against Baylor in Waco, Texas, on Saturday, Feb. 24 at 5 p.m. PT.

Follow Jack Taylor on Twitter @taylorjack36

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UO Acro: The 3-Time National Champs You Didn’t Know Existed

Quick, name the UO sport that features double-downs, back-tuck baskets, twist double fulls, scorpions and kick doubles (hint: it’s not gymnastics, skiing/snowboarding, cheer or dance).  Figured it out yet?  UO is the reigning national champions.  Getting closer?  For those who are new to these incredible acts, this terminology relates to just one sport: Acrobatics and Tumbling, also known as the Acro Team.  Acro is a relatively new sport at the college level that has recently become popular across the states at various universities.  The sport has obvious roots in both gymnastics and competitive cheerleading.

Acro teams are made up of female athletes, and these teams compete against one another other through a series of different rounds.  These differing rounds include: compulsory, acrobatics, tumbling, pyramid, toss and team routine.  Each athlete on the team is skilled in gymnastics, stunts and performing to the audience.  These tasks have been neglected by the sports world for years.  Up until the last few years many never considered cheerleading to be a sport.  Well, these girls of the UO Acro team have proved that it, in fact, is.

Showing off their ability to toss double downs (2013 practice)

Showing off their
ability to toss double downs (2013 practice).

Although the sport may be technically hard for many to follow, considering its relative youth, competitions are extremely exciting.  Add to this excitement the fact that the University of Oregon Acrobatics and Tumbling team is currently ranked No. 1 in the nation from a group of ten other competing schools including: Adrian College, Alderson-Broaddus College, Azusa Pacific University, Baylor University, Fairmont State University, Gannon University, Hawaii Pacific University, King College, Quinnipiac University and UMass-Dartmouth.  Much the same as with many sports programs at the University of Oregon, the Acrobatics and Tumbling team has proven to be one of the best squads in the country, and the team to watch.

As of now, Ducks Acro is 9-1 after a recent loss to Azusa Pacific.  Fortunately, the Ducks earned a spot in the NCATA (National Collegiate Acrobatics and Tumbling Association) Championships that will take place today and run through Saturday.  This will be the ladies’ fourth run at the championship title, having already won the previous three.  The future looks bright for the women of Acro.

Showing strength by tossing back tuck baskets many feet in the air (2013 practice)

Showing strength by tossing back tuck baskets many feet in the air (2013 practice).

Head Coach Felicia Mulkey and the Ducks will head back to Azusa Pacific to defend their national title.  Individual events will take place Thursday, April 24, and feature competitors from all teams.  The quarter finals take place on Friday.  On that day, the Ducks will go head-to-head against the winner of Thursday’s match between Alderson-Broaddus and King College.  The championships conclude Saturday with semi-finals occurring at 10 a.m. and 12:30 p.m., followed by the finals that night at 7:30 p.m.

The Ducks are 41-3 in all NCATA competitions to date, and ended the 2014 regular season with a 9-1 record.  This record, along with their top national ranking, make Oregon’s Acrobatics and Tumbling team the odds-on favorites to repeat as NCATA Champions.  And given all their hard work and determination, the Ducks do have a great chance to once again dominate the championships.  It will be exciting to see if the girls can bring home yet another national championship.

Video: UO Acro Goes for Three-Peat

Top photo by Gary Breedlove

Oregon Wins Third Straight NCATA National Championship


The Oregon Ducks acrobatic and tumbling team is making quite the name for themselves in the acrobatics world, as they took home their third straight NCATA National Championship after defeating the second-ranked Quinnipiac Bobcats by a score of 277.885-273.655.

Oregon took home their third straight NCATA National Championship on Saturday | John Hassett/
Oregon took home their third straight NCATA National Championship on Saturday | John Hassett/

The top-ranked Ducks got things going in their favor right off the bat in the Compulsory round, sweeping all heats and establishing an early 38.45-36.8 point advantage over the Bobcats. Scoring a 10 in Heat 2, Oregon also recorded scores of 9.95 (Heat 3), 9.4 (Heat 1), and 9.10 (Heat 4). The Acro Round was a little closer than the first portion of the competition, with Oregon taking away 27.76 points in the round while Quinnipiac took away 27.52. Holding a 66.21-64.32 overall advantage in the competition, the Ducks and Bobcats drew in the Pyramid Round to keep the teams separated by just 1.89 points with just the Toss and Tumble Rounds to go.

Coming out of the break Oregon started to pull away in the competition by sweeping both the Toss and Tumble Rounds to give them a 183.085-177.595 overall advantage with just the team portion to go. The Ducks were so dominant, in fact, that they swept both rounds while only seeing themselves record a score of 9.5 or lower in one heat (Heat 3, Tumble Round).

Quinnipiac made things at least a little interesting in the team competition, as they won their only round in the championship by a score of 96.06-94.80. That would not be enough to make up the distance, however, as Oregon came away with their third straight NCATA National Championship.