Feb. 7, 2009


Courtesy of Georgia

ATHENS, Ga. --- The No. 3-ranked Georgia gymnastics team won a convincing meet over the No. 5-ranked Auburn Tigers Saturday afternoon at Stegeman Coliseum.

In front of a sold-out crowd of 10,224, the Gym Dogs posted a 197.250-195.925 victory over the Tigers. That is Georgia's highest score of the season and it is the highest score in the nation going into weekend competition.

Senior Courtney Kupets posted a 39.625 to win the all-around for the sixth meet in a row as the Gym Dogs moved to 6-0 for the season.

"I didn't feel like we attacked and competed with a lot of confidence out there today," Georgia coach Suzanne Yoculan said. "Today we held ourselves back on a few routines just to get us back on track, which we did.  It's hard to be too disappointed in our score today though, which is the highest in the country this season, and we had four great routines out there."

Georgia opened with a 49.250 on vault, with 9.900s by Marcia Newby and Tiffany Tolnay leading the way. The Gym Dogs also got a 9.875 from Kupets and a 9.825 from Cassidy McComb. Auburn started with a 48.825 on bars.

Georgia got scores of 9.850 from Newby, Kathryn Ding and Kupets to lead to a 49.150 on the uneven bars. The Gym Dogs also got 9.800s from Lauren Sessler and Grace Taylor.  With the Tigers posting a 49.025 on vault, Georgia led at the halfway point, 98.400-97.850.

Georgia got a score of 9.975 from Kupets to lead the Gym Dogs to a 49.475 on the balance beam, which proved to be its highest event score of the afternoon. Hilary Mauro and McComb led off the rotation with 9.825s. Tolnay followed with a 9.900 and Taylor received a 9.950 before Kupets' performance. Auburn had a score of 49.075 on floor to make the overall score 147.875-146.800 heading into the final rotation.

The floor exercise opened with Abby Stack scoring a 9.825, a score that McComb matched. Mauro, Taylor and Tolnay scored 9.875s and Kupets led Georgia with a 9.925 en route to a 49.375 on the floor. Auburn ended with a 49.000 on beam.

"Today was definitely a big step up for us today," Kupets said. "We had some great workouts in the gym this week and it showed today.  I didn't feel that it was a great meet for us today but a really good one."

Freshman Gina Nuccio hyperextended her right knee in pre-meet warm-ups and did not compete.  She was replaced on the uneven bars by Sessler and on the balance beam by Ding.

The Gym Dogs will travel to Lexington, Ky. to face Kentucky and Centenary on Friday at 7 p.m.


Team Results
1. Georgia - (VT- 49.250; UB- 49.150; BB- 49.475; FX- 49.375; FINAL- 197.250) 2. Auburn - (VT- 49.025; UB- 48.825; BB- 49.000; FX- 49.075; FINAL- 195.925)

Individual Results (Georgia competitors)
Vault: Lauren Sessler- 9.750; Kathryn Ding- 9.725; Cassidy McComb- 9.825; Marcia Newby- 9.900; Courtney Kupets- 9.875; Tiffany Tolnay- 9.900

Bars: Marcia Newby- 9.850; Kathryn Ding- 9.850; Lauren Sessler- 9.800; Grace Taylor- 9.800; Tiffany Tolnay- 9.275; Courtney Kupets- 9.850

Beam: Hilary Mauro- 9.825; Cassidy McComb- 9.825; Tiffany Tolnay- 9.900; Grace Taylor- 9.950; Courtney Kupets- 9.975; Kathryn Ding- 9.650

Floor: Abby Stack- 9.825; Hilary Mauro- 9.875; Grace Taylor- 9.875; Cassidy McComb- 9.825; Courtney Kupets- 9.925; Tiffany Tolnay- 9.875