With win against Arizona State, Utah coach Greg Marsden earns No. 1,000
TEMPE, Ariz. -- Greg Marsden became the first 1,000-win coach in Utah gymnastics history and his No. 4-ranked Utes are off to a 6-0 start for the first time since their NCAA runner-up season in 2008. The Utes, who are now 3-0 in Pac-12 play, won the latest conference contest in style, soundly beating No. 19 Arizona State 197.200-194.900 in the Wells Fargo Arena.
Marsden, in his 39th year at Utah and the only coach in program history, earned win No. 1,000 in just 1,206 meets for a winning percentage of .829.
He acknowledged the feat after the meet, saying, "I feel it is a great accomplishment for the program and a tribute to our current and past teams and staff, but I'm glad it's over. I didn't want it [1,000 wins] to become a distraction. The team handled the task at hand very well."
The meet was already well in hand heading into the balance beam, but certainly Utah responded well on its final event after first-time leadoff performer Breanna Hughes fell. It was the first fall of Hughes' career; she was 33-of-33 on bars and beam heading into the routine. The next five Utes cleanly hit their routines and Corrie Lothrop won the event with a career-high 9.95 in her first time at the anchor position this season.
Lothrop was part of a Ute sweep in the event and all-around titles. Georgia Dabritz remained unbeaten on the uneven bars, moving to 4-0 on the season with a 9.925 and also won the floor exercise with a 9.95. Kailah Delaney (9.95) edged Tory Wilson (9.925) for the vault title and Wilson won her third all-around of the year with a 39.45.
Utah handled the bars well once again on the road on its first rotation, scoring a 49.225 to take an early lead over ASU (48.875 on vault). Dabritz, the 2013 NCAA runner-up on bars, earned her winning 9.925 score after 9.85s from Lothrop and Nansy Damianova.
In round two, Utah expanded its lead to 98.675-97.500 and showed why it is the nation's best team on the vault. Especially impressive in the 49.45 set were flawless-looking vaults from Delaney (9.95) and Wilson (9.925).
Dabritz finished her night one rotation later by winning the floor with a 9.95. Wilson and Damianova both put up 9.875 scores and the Utes totaled a 49.250. Arizona State started strong on the beam, but its last two competitors fell, allowing Utah to add a point to its "halftime" lead and head into the balance beam with a big 147.925-145.800 advantage.
The coaches switched up the beam lineup, hoping to fix their falls on the event. Other than Hughes' fall at the leadoff post, it worked well with the Utes posting a season-best 49.275.
No. 6 Georgia 197.300, Kentucky 190.950
ATHENS, Ga. -- The Gym Dogs continued their impressive home form this season with a 197.300-190.950 against the Wildcats. Georgia recorded the top score on all four rotations with Lindsey Cheek’s vault (9.95), bars (9.95) and beam (9.875) and Brandie Jay capping the meet with a 9.95 on floor led the way for the Gym Dogs.
Senior Lindsey Cheek was again the catalyst for the home team as she continued her outstanding start to the season as she stretched her season opening streak of receiving a 9.9 on higher on both vault and bars to six meets.
The Gym Dogs recorded a 49.425 on vault behind Cheek’s 9.95 which set her season high and also tied her career high on the event. Cat Hires also recorded a 9.9 to propel Georgia. The Gym Dogs came out of the first rotation having opened a significant lead over the Wildcats who recorded a 47.325 on bars.
Ranked No. 1 in the country on bars, Georgia put forth another strong effort as it recorded a 49.450 on the event. The Gym Dogs were led by the gymnasts ranked second and third in the nation respectively on the event as second ranked Cheek recorded a 9.95 and third ranked Chelsea Davis notched a 9.925. Brandie Jay was the third Gym Dog receiving a bouquet as she scored a 9.9. Georgia stretched its lead at the half way point of the meet 98.875-96.175 as Kentucky scored a 48.800 on vault.
The Gym Dogs finished the meet with a 49.275 on floor with Jay producing the high score of the rotation on the final routine. Kaylan Earls sparked the event with a lead off 9.9 score that featured all the Illinois native’s usual energy and enthusiasm. It also was a season high for Earls while simultaneously tying her career high.
No. 8 Nebraska 196.975, Minnesota 195.900
LINCOLN, Neb. -- Nebraska posted three season-high team scores to defeat No. 14 Minnesota 196.975-195.900 at the Bob Devaney Sports Center. The Big Red posted new season-high scores on bars (49.325) floor (49.350) and their overall score (196.975).
Senior Emily Wong once again led the Huskers claiming four event titles including the all-around crown with a score of 39.525. Wong's efforts included a new season high on vault (9.925), a career-high tie on bars (9.95), and a season high-tie on floor (9.95). Wong has now collected 13 event titles this season.