LIVE BLOG: No. 7 Michigan, No. T9 Minnesota and No. 67 Centenary College at No. 19 Missouri

Let’s just call the Ladies “Mentenary College” to make this the Meet of Many Ms. No? Too far?

Anyway, look at those lead two: No. 7 and No. 9. Did you think we’d be talking about Minnesota this much in 2019? Look out for the Gophers. This is a great rematch of the Big Five meet—which pitted these two against each other head-to-head in February and saw Michigan come out on top after some sloppy floor work from Minnesota—before Big Tens next weekend. Minnesota will be itching to pick off the Wolverines, and Bev Plocki’s squad will be doing everything possible to stop that from happening. Watch for Lexy Ramler and Natalie Wojcik to vie for the all around here.

Per the Balance Beam Situation‘s math, Michigan needs just a 196.800 here to be secure at No. 7 going into next week, but catching Utah at No. 6 isn’t out of the question if the Wolverines go above and beyond and Utah is a touch off. A 197.000 guarantees that the Gophers can hold off Alabama, and that will be the goal. Missouri will also be looking for an elusive 197-plus mark to attempt to pass Nebraska. For Centenary, this one is about getting on a big stage and aiming to best last week’s 192 season high—and feeling confident moving into the conference championship. Centenary is capable of besting at least one, if not two, DI conference foes next weekend, and a big number here will set it up well for that contest at home.

Full disclosure, folks, it has been a week, so I’m doing this thing with a glass of wine. Nothing Carol is unfamiliar with. I highly encourage all of you to do the same on what is sure to be a night of high scoring chaos across the NCAA in this final weekend of the regular season. Let’s brace ourselves.

We’re eight minutes out and I still have no idea what the rotation order is, so this is already going great.

Rotation 1: Missouri vault, Minnesota bars, Michigan beam, Centenary floor

We just heard that the stream be focusing primarily on Missouri. Cool cool cool.

McCrary (Mizzou): FTY, small pike and a step.

“Since this is the SEC Network…” Yes okay, I get it, but you have two top ten programs and a stellar DIII in the house, too, so.

Porter (Mizzou): Long, long wait. We’re watching her wait instead of seeing routines, of course. FTY, some hip angle, early twist and a small hop.

Gottula (Mizzou): FTY, better hips in the air, slight pike and a step back.

Farley hit a 9.900 on beam for Michigan I’m glad we didn’t get to see it while waiting for vaults.

I see a sombrero on an AC. Mhm mhm.

Tucker (Mizzou): FTY, nice body, slight underrotation and steps forward.

At least Minnesota bars seems to be going slowly, so hopefully we’ll see a lot of that when vault ends.

Bidwill (Mizzou): Y1.5, some knees and hip angle, step.

Christensen (Mizzou): FTY, small hop back.

Now we’re looking at Welker instead of seeing routines! I have absolutely nothing against Missouri, but come on.

Oh OK, now we have a three-way split screen and I can see exactly nothing.

Lu (Minn.): Maloney, good, to pak, strong. Short last handstand by a hair. DLO, small hop back.

Smith (CC): Double pike, touch short, steps forward. Switch ring + switch side, good splits. FHS front 1/1 + front pike, very nice. She has great rhythm in her tumbling. Wolf 3/2 you don’t see that every day! Whip + 3/2, good. Great set!

Wojcik (UM): Bit of a wait for her.Front aerial + beat, steady. Great flow. Switch + split. Bhs loso strong. Just no finger out of place. Cat + side aerial, slight lean but she covers it well. RO 3/2 small hop.

It seems Heiskell is doing an exhibition set and we’re watching Michigan stand and watch instead of watching her. Super!

Heiskell (UM-exh): Here we go! Bobble on full turn. Bhs loso, good. Off on side somi. RO 3/2 small step.

AFTER ONE: Michigan 49.275, Minnesota 49.175, Missouri 48.900, Centenary 47.950

Well, OK, this is going to be annoying. At least we got to see a few other sets in there. Scoring is not generous so far, from what we saw. That said, Michigan starts out right on 197-pace, and Minnesota is just a touch off it.

Rotation Two: Centenary vault, Missouri bars, Minnesota beam, Michigan floor

It appears, unless scores are wrong, that Navia Jordan did not do floor for Centenary, which is a problem leading into MICs for the Ladies. Will keep an eye on that situation.

Tucker (Mizzou): Hect mount, good first handstand. pike Jaeger, good. Bail hand. Blind 1/1 + double tuck, step forward.

Kelly (Mizzou): Hect mount. Short handstand. Blind + pike Jaeger, good. Bail hand loose in the core. DLO, stuck.

Well we can hear Osman’s floor music. We are watching people grip up. I’m slowly getting furious.

Christensen (Mizzou): Blind 1/1 + Tkatchev feet. Bail hand loose. Blind 1/1 + double tuck stuck. Good, just that loose bail.

Schugel (Mizzou): Hect mount. Good handstand. Blind + pike Jaeger to bail. Blind 1/1 + double tuck stuck. Some small leg seps in there, but very good.

If we miss Ramler on beam I’m throwing this wine at the TV.

Porter (Mizzou): Hect mount. Blind + Jaeger, good. Toe hand to bail hand, leg sep. Good final handstand. Blind + double front cowboyed.

Well we missed a 9.925 on beam from Loper, and McLean is taking the floor. La la.

Bidwill (Mizzou): Toe hand to Maloney leg sep on the back swing. Bail hand loose. DLO, step back.

Jordan also did not vault. I am worried.

Wojcik (UM): OK, in a Wojcik floor vs Ramler beam I’d show the latter since we got Wojcik beam, but HEY here we are. Open full-in, gorgeous control. Tour jete 1/2 + wolf 1/1. FHS 2/1 + front pike, good. FHS rudi + straddle, took the jump back a touch but landed it well.

Ramler (Minn.): THANK YOU YES PLEASE. I spoke too soon, sorry SECN+. Can I blame the wine? Bhs loso, slightly to the side but covered completely. Front aerial + beat, steady. Beat + ring, small bobble, steps back. Side aerial + 1/1 fights for the stick.

Karas getting big cheers as she finishes while we watch Minnesota stand around.

Sales (Minn-replay): Bhs bhs loso, gorgeous. Cat + switch side, steady. She’s so calm. Gainer pike stuck. We got the replay because she went 9.950!

AFTER TWO: Michigan 98.650, Minnesota 98.450, Missouri 97.950, Centenary 95.500

Well, this is a battle for the top two. What a preview of Big Tens! Missouri will want to pick up its scores a bit. It’s on pace to just miss a 196, which is too low at this point in the year. Bars was clean, but it will take very tight beam and floor work to make up some ground. Minnesota is absolutely in striking distance of Michigan, but its weakest event is coming up in floor. Michigan will close on bars which can be stellar, so this one could get away from the Gophers if they can’t keep it close this rotation.

Rotation 3: Michigan vault, Centenary bars, Missouri beam, Minnesota floor

Bower (Mizzou): Bhs loso, some knees but great hollow position. Cat + front toss to beat, good. Switch + straddle 1/4, not quite there on the split positions. Gainer 1/1 stuck.

Nicholson (Mizzou): She has great carriage and posture. Bhs bhs loso, slightly off but brings it back, another great hollow loso. Beat + straddle 1/2. Cartwheel gainer 1/1, stuck again. This is what Missouri needs!

Gottual (Mizzou): She has a quick pace and some fun different choreo. Bhs bhs loso, totally secure. Very nice. Switch + straddle 1/4, good oversplits, her chest was a touch forward on the 1/4. Cartwheel gainer 1/1, good landing.

Karas’ floor score was just raised to 9.925.

Kelly (Mizzou): Front aerial one arm bhs, good. Love that combo. Straddle + sheep, some messy legs in the sheep. Front 1/1 stuck.

Wojcik just did a 9.975 vault and we watched a mat instead.

The Missouri stick crown is a fuzzy tiger ear headband.

Clevenger (Mizzou): PRETTY mount. Bhs bhs loso, some knees and not quite enough height. Cat + switch side, feet. RO 3/2 hop forward.

Porter (Mizzou): Press mount. Switch + split + back tuck, small adjustment. Front aerial bhs, good. She’s very clean, I just want her to get her chin up a bit more and present out, she’d be STELLAR with that little adjustment. Hitch + front toss, solid. RO 3/2, small hop.

My boyfriend is at a restaurant and just told me a group of Michigan fans are there doing the Go Blue cheer; it’s 100% for basketball (the tournament is here in Chicago) but I’m pretending it is for gymnastics.

Schugel (Mizzou – exh): OK an exhibition instead of Minnesota on floor for real?! Bhs bhs loso. I know it’s senior night, but. This is Paige Williams floor ahhhh! Switch switch, small bobble. Gainer 1/1, holds the stick. Aw, she’s very emotional.

Well, we saw Williams’ closing rudi and it was nice.

AFTER THREE: Michigan 147.900, Minnesota 147.675, Missouri 147.375, Centenary 141.300

As expected, Minnesota fell a bit further back. Missouri looked very good, and gained a little ground. The Tigers are now set up for a strong score with hit floor. A 49.1 gets Michigan to 197, a very doable score for the Wolverines. That juicy 197 will take a 49.325 for the Gophers.

Rotation 4: Minnesota vault, Michigan bars, Centenary beam, Missouri floor

Bower (Mizzou): Double pike, great landing, feet in the air. Did her leaps behind a camera man. 3/2 + front lay, just some looseness. Casey Jo Magee is wearing the sombrero now. Double tuck, great landing. What a good last home floor!

That baby shark song is happening. I’ve avoided this for so long! Why!

Nicholson (Mizzou): FHS 2/1, little short on rotation. 3/2 + front lay, pretty arched but good landing. Switch side + Popa. FHS rudi, very high, good landing.

The crowd is getting LOUD.

Caught Ramler’s vault in the background. Y1.5, a medium step to the side, maybe some knees?

Turner (Mizzou): Double pike, good landing. Tour jete 1/2 + wolf 3/2, pulled her chest way down. 3/2 + front lay, slides her feet a bit.

Michigan will have to count a 9.450. OH MAN, Minnesota has an opening.

Gottual (Mizzou): Double pike, SO high, good landing. Barani to rudi, pretty messy in the legs. Hop wolf 1/1 + switch side? Weird, but cool. Double tuck, very good.

Michigan will lose to Minnesota, its first Big Ten loss this year. 196.900 to 196.800.

Tucker (Mizzou): Half in half out, good landing. 2/1 loso, good. Orphan front tuck. Double pike, small step.

So, the Wolverines JUST got the score they needed to hold No. 7. Yikes. Very close call. Counting that low score is not how they wanted to close.

Porter (Mizzou): Mizzou sits at a 196.700, so this could be a very meaningful routine. Double pike, very good. 3/2 + front lay, some leg sep. Switch 1/2 + split 1/1. Double tuck, good landing. Great set! She’d need a 9.925 to tie Michigan.

And she got it! Michigan and Missouri will tie.

WHAT AN ENDING!

OK! Jordan did compete beam. Phew. Maybe she was just being rested going into MICs.

FINAL: Minnesota 196.900, Michigan 196.800, Missouri 196.800, Centenary 189.200


Live blog by Emily Minehart

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