OU V Florida Women's Gymnastics

OU's Faith Torrez competes on the high beam during the Sooners' match against Florida, Friday, Mar. 3, 2023, at Lloyd Noble Center. (Ray Bahner / The Transcript)

After a breakout freshman season, Oklahoma’s Faith Torrez was given all-conference honors for the floor exercise, posting the team’s highest national qualifying score (NQS) with a 9.950.

As the team prepares to head to Morgantown, W. Va. for the Big 12 Championship, head coach KJ Kindler has full confidence in her freshman the rest of the season.

“She has these tiny little things that she can get rid of, little small deductions,” Kindler said. “But she could win floor at NCAA Championships. She could win floor at every event she’s got from this point forward, she’s that strong on that event as a freshman.”

Kindler admits that’s high praise for such a young athlete. Even with all the success the Sooners have had over the last decade, only five Sooners have won individual titles during that span.

Only three have won national titles on floor (Maggie Nichols, Brenna Dowell and Anastasia Webb). It’s an especially difficult event to perform flawlessly when the pressure is at its highest.

Kindler just has that much confidence in Torrez.

The freshman from Bristol, Wisc. has been the Sooners most consistent performer on the event this season. In fact, it’s Torrez’s consistency in her routine from event to event that impresses Kindler the most.

“It’s just unusual the way she attacks it,” she said. “It almost looks the same every time she does it.”

That’s a characteristic Kindler looks for in a great gymnast. Torrez came to Oklahoma as a highly-touted recruit and former member of the Senior National Team.

The program first caught Torrez eye when she visited the summer going into her freshman year of high school.

“I didn’t even know what college gymnastics was or what the process was,” Torrez said. “but once I came here I was like when I get older this is the place I want to be, and it was the right decision,”

Torrez posted a team-high 9.950 on floor in the team’s first meet of the season at the Super 16 meet in Las Vegas. She’s competed on floor in all 11 meets this season, posting a 9.950 seven times including five of the last six meets.

Torrez has competed in all four events this season, including the all-around three times. In the Sooners’ senior day win over No. 14 Arizona State, Torrez competed in three events including a 9.975 on the balance beam.

The Sooners begin the Big 12 Championships on Saturday at 6 p.m. and the meet will be televised on ESPNU.

“We’re definitely hungry,” Torrez said. “That’s the best way to describe it, everybody is working so hard in the gym, and you can just feel the energy in the beginning of practice and how hard everybody is fighting to make it happen.”

The Sooners have won 14 conference championships and 13 in the 17 seasons under Kindler.

Tarik Masri is the interim sports editor for The Transcript covering OU athletics and area sports. You can reach him by emailing tarik@normantranscript.com

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