Travis Doak

By Travis Doak for
November 09, 2011 04:20 PM

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Throughout the 2012 preseason, the West Virginia University gymnastics team and staff will periodically check in with Mountaineer fans, providing updates on the progress made in Cary Gym and the weight room. The team also will share stories from its multiple team-bonding trips and activities.

This year’s ninth tale comes from assistant coach Travis Doak. Entering his fourth season at WVU, Doak is responsible for coaching the vault, bars and floor. He also oversees the Mountaineers’ recruiting efforts.

Under Doak’s watch, the Mountaineers have made three straight NCAA Regional Championships appearances and compiled a record of 47-27. Thirty-five all-EAGL honors have been awarded, including 22 first team awards, two East Atlantic Gymnastics League (EAGL) Outstanding Senior awards (Mehgan Morris, 2009, Amy Bieski, 2011) and one EAGL Gymnast of the Year honor (Amy Bieski, 2011). Additionally, WVU has captured seven individual EAGL titles.

Doak was instrumental to the team’s success in 2011, as he guided the vault and floor lineups to the No. 1 and No. 2 EAGL rankings, respectively. Those lineups also ranked No. 17 and No. 21, respectively, in the nation.

Gymnastics for the 2011-12 season is more than what I expected in so many different and great ways! Coming in with a class of so many new faces has brought such a great, uplifting light into Cary Gym. It is refreshing to see the energy from our returning student-athletes mesh with our new team members. Coach Butts, in combination with our seniors Tina Maloney and Nicole Roach, has been instrumental in guiding the team in every context, and we could not ask for better leadership!

We had a recruiting official-visit weekend a few days ago, and we were all excited to have future student-athletes on campus and interacting with the team and coaches. It was great to see the current team members in the gym having such a strong desire to show future Mountaineers what they were trying to accomplish as a squad.

The seniors, Tina and Nicole, have never looked better in the gym. Nicole is coming back from a post-season injury and looks like she didn't miss any time at all! Tina is showcasing what we always want our student-athletes to exhibit – she is doing her best gymnastics as a Mountaineer senior. Additionally, Hope Sloanhoffer continues to make improvements going into her sophomore year and is proving that she will build on her stand-out freshman season.

I think our gymnastics and new routines are something our fans can be excited to see this season. We have a great group of freshmen and sophomores, like Bethany Yurko and Amanda Carpenter, that haven't seen competition and could impact multiple events. Our fans can look forward to getting to know a whole new crowd of Mountaineer faces!

Getting recognized on the field during a football game is always a great time for our team and staff, and we were able to enjoy another recognition this past weekend at the WVU-Louisville game. As Mountaineers, we love our sports teams at West Virginia, and when we have the opportunity to be recognized before the fans at Mountaineer Field, it is always exciting. The girls on the team took pictures at every opportunity and enjoyed their time and their recognition as one of the many great teams at WVU. These girls work hard every day to ensure the success that the state of West Virginia expects.

All this excitement brings new light to a program that has undergone exciting changes. I am ready for the fans of WVU Gymnastics to see all the encouraging accomplishments we as coaches have already witnessed in Cary Gym. I am entering Thanksgiving break with a great excitement for WVU Gymnastics and believe this season can be great for our team and fans.

Let’s Go Mountaineers!
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