Jan. 23, 2014
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -
With the night sky in Tuscaloosa lit in pink for the better part of the a week now, the No. 7 ranked Alabama gymnastics team is set to take on No. 10 Arkansas in the Crimson Tide's 10th annual Power of Pink meet Friday at 7:30 p.m. in Coleman Coliseum.
"I think this is a meet that everyone looks forward to all year," UA head coach Sarah Patterson said. "It's such an amazing event and it's always a great meet. This Friday will be no different."
Alabama returns home after its first road meet of the season with a 2-1-0 mark overall and a 2-0-0 record in Southeastern Conference competition while Arkansas is 3-0-0 overall and 1-0-0 in the SEC. The Tide is led by senior Kim Jacob and freshman Katie Bailey who are both ranked in the top-25 nationally in the all-around.
The Razorbacks, mentored by co-head coaches Mark Cook and Rene Lyst, are led by senior Katherine Grable, the nation's No. 1 ranked all-arounder. Both teams opened SEC competition with wins over Missouri.
Alabama and Arkansas last met in the semifinals of the NCAA Championships, when Alabama won the evening session with a 197.350 and Arkansas was sixth with a 196.150. The Tide and Razorbacks last met in the regular season when they tied in Fayetteville on Feb. 22, 2013 with matching 197.100 scores. It was the fifth tie in the Tide's 39-year history and the Razorbacks' fourth in 11 seasons.
Both teams will set aside their school colors for the night and will compete in pink leotards in conjunction with Sarah Patterson's Power of Pink initiative to raise awareness in the fight against breast cancer. Prior to the meet 17 breast cancer survivors will be introduced along with the Tide gymnasts. In a first, freshman Dominique Pegg will be introduced with her mother, Cat Parker, who is a one-year survivor.
The Tide will also present a check for $108,900 to the DCH Breast Cancer Fund which was founded to support Patterson's initiative and help disadvantaged women in the West Alabama community. Another check, representing the entire $1.45 million that has been raised for the DCH Breast Cancer Fund over the past decade will also be presented prior to the meet.
In addition to the previous nine "pink" meets in Coleman Coliseum, Alabama has faced 11 other teams on the road while wearing their pink leotards as the idea of pink events in sports has grown to include the whole gamut of collegiate athletics as well as the NFL, MLB and other professional leagues. All told, Alabama is a perfect 20-0 when wearing pink.
Tickets for the Tide's home meets and the SEC and NCAA Championships are on sale through the Alabama Ticket Office (205.348.2262) located in the lobby of Coleman Coliseum, and online at RollTide.com. Fans can keep up with the Tide via Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and YouTube by following BamaGymnastics.