LIVE BLOG: No. 38 BYU at No. 22 Southern Utah

Another Friday night MRGC dual meet is underway! Tonight, the BYU Cougars travel down to Southern Utah to take on the Thunderbirds. Southern Utah has had a hot start to the season scoring four consecutive 196s and remains undefeated still. 5th year Karley McClain has had a stellar season so far, and four star recruit Trista Goodman has been delivering on bars and beams as well. BYU on the other hand, had a slow start, but is finally getting into the swing of things after posting a massive 196.550 last weekend against Utah State. Last week, beam was a highlight for the Cougars, led by Elease Rollins and Lauren Ono. If both teams perform up to their potentials, this meet should be a close one.

Rotation 1: SUU VT, BYU UB

Vultaggio (SUU): Solid yfull with a big hop backwards. Gets nice distance on this vault, but pikes down some. 9.675

Lealaogata (BYU): Nice first handstand, Maloney with a leg separation, smaller leg separation on the Pak. Double layout with a small step, solid debut for her! 9.675

Cacciola (SUU): Good yfull, has really nice leg form but a large hop backwards. 9.775

Benson (BYU): Solid first handstand. Tkatchev with flexed feet, and the following handstand is a little short. Some piking of the hips on the bail. Double layout with a hop backwards.

McClain (SUU): Great yfull with a small hop. Very nice amplitude, just a smidge off center. 9.825

Bramblett (BYU): Good first handstand. Beautiful straddled Jaeger to overshoot. Didn’t have a great angle to see the last handstand, but finishes with a stuck double layout. Very nice routine! 9.900

C. Kho (SUU): Yurchenko 1.5 with massive distance. Lads a little short and lock-legged and has to take 2 small steps backwards. 9.725

Eaquinto (BYU): Good first handstand, Maloney to Pak, no visible leg separaton. Falls on the pirouette and hits the ground pretty hard trying to save it. Finishes with a stuck double layout. 9.050

Pardue (SUU): Nice Yurchenko 1.5 with a step forward. Has really nice amplitude, just a little bit of bent knees and directional issues. 9.825

Really long wait here for Hunter.

Hunter (BYU): Stunning first handstand, big Tkatchev. Clean bail. Another good final handstand, stuck double layout with just an arm wave. Nice rebound routien for the Cougars. 9.925

Smith (SUU): Yurchenko full on, tuck off. Really clean vault, especially for a tucked one. Just a small step backwards. 9.750

Alvarado (BYU): Great first handstand. Beautiful Pak with really nice leg form. Van Leeuwen is clean. Finishes with a double layout with a hop backwards. 9.800

After 1: BYU 48.975, SUU 48.900

As expected, after one this meet is close, with BYU holding a lead of less than a tenth. Bars was a bit of mixed bag for BYU with the three great routines and three that were a bit of a struggle. In particular, Bramblett was very impressive. As for Southern Utah, McClain and Pardue had the strongest vaults, but its team score was held down by some early rotation yfulls.

Rotation 2: BYU VT, SUU UB

Dudley (BYU): Yfull to start, nice distance but not the most height. Hop backwards. 9.750

C. Kho (SUU): A little short on the first handstand. Maloney to Pak, small leg separation on the Pak. Good final handstand. Full in with a hop. 9.825

Patton (BYU): Yurchenko full on, back tuck off with a near stick. Nice vault, just not the most dynamic. 9.800

Goodman (SUU): Clean first handstand. Piked Jaeger, nice Pak. Good vertical position on the pirouette. Short final handstand, giant full to doouble tuck with a big step backwards. 9.825

Benson (BYU): Yfull with just a small hop a little bit of a pike down. Great amplitude and distance. 9.875

Bentley (SUU): Good opening handstand. Ray to overshoot, a little messy leg form on the Ray. Double layout with a small scoot backwards.

Ripley (BYU): Big front hand pike 1/2, with a bigger hop backwards. Great amplitude and form, lands with her chest up. 9.825

McClain (SUU): Good first handstand. Gienger with just a tiny bit of leg separation at the end. Solid bail. Nice final handstand, double layout with a hop. 9.875

Mason (BYU): Yurchenko 1.5 with a hop, lands on the left directional lines and has some leg form throughout. 9.825

Murakami (SUU): Stunning first handstand. Love how she catches her Jaeger with super straight arms before connecting into the overshoot. Really emphasizes the last handstand. FTDT with a stick, and a little bit of leg separation in the air. 9.900

Eaquinto (BYU): Dynamic yfull with a small hop back. 9.900

Neff (SUU): Hit first handstand. Maloney to Bail, a little short of handstand on the baill. Blind full to double tuck with a step, was also very past vertical on the blind full.

After 2:

Halfway through and these teams are separated by half a tenth! Both teams stepped it up in that rotation, with BYU having its best vault rotation of the year led by Eaquinto and Benson’s nearly stuck yfulls. Southern Utah impressed on bars with very clean routines, Murakami being a highlight especially.

Rotation 3: SUU BB, BYU FX

Murakami (SUU): Solid full turn. Bhs, loso, bhs with a balance check. Split jump, sheep jump, not the most ideal sheep position. Cartwheel gainer full is stuck with her chest down. 9.725

Millar (BYU): Tour jete half, popa, indistinct landing position on the first leap. Double tuck with a small hop forwards, nice height. Front layout, front full with a controlled step. 9.725

Smith (SUU): Round off, loso is well done. Split 3/4 is very short of split. Dismounts with a 1.5 with a hop. These SUU beam routines are short and sweet. 9.800

Benson (BYU): Opens with a well controlled double tuck. The camera angle was head on for her leap pass, so I couldn’t see much. Front layout, front full, with a stumble out of bounds. Finishes with a good double pike. 9.675

Caciolla (SUU): Nice full turn. Bhs loso is very clean. Beat jump, loso is right on. Switch leap, switch leap, split jump. First switch leap was very short of split, the other leaps were better. Stuck 1.5 dismount, very solid. 9.900

Dudley (BYU): Excellent chest position and control on the opening double pike. Front full, front lay, gets good amplitude on the front layout especially. Switch side, wolf full. Finishes with a slightly under rotated double tuck and has to take a step forwards. 9.800

Schwartze (SUU): Bhs, loso is very clean, she has nice extension throughout. Small check on the full turn. Beat jump, loso, beat jump is clean. Split jump, sheep jump, not the best sheep position. Stuck gainer full. Nice. 9.850

Schooley (BYU): Switch side 3/4 is fine. Back 1.5 to front lay is nicely controlled. Switch ring, switch side is good. Double tuck with a large lunge backwards. 9.825

McClain (SUU): Bhs loso is clean. Switch leap, split jump, back leg might’ve been a little low on the jump. Cat leap, side aerial with a lean but minimizes the deduction. Split jump, straddle quarter. Dismounts with a back 1.5 and a small hop. 9.825

Rollins (BYU): Top Gun themed floor routine. Opens with a really high double tuck with a controlled step. Switch side, double stag full is okay. Front lay, front full is solid. 9.875

Vultaggio (SUU): Bhs, loso, loso, works out of a check by taking a step backwards. Switch leap, split jump, not the most amplitude on those jumps. Dismounts with a 1.5 and a hop. 9.900

Ripley (BYU): Front tuck through to double tuck with a slide backwards. Switch side, popa, wolf full is nice. Finishes with a double pike, land short and has to take a hop and a step forwards. 9.775

After 3: SUU 147.425, BYU 147.200

After three, Southern Utah takes the lead. That beam rotation was impressive and totaled a 49.275 thanks to a duo of 9.9s from Vultaggio and Caciolla. BYU was solid on floor, but some of its early routines lacked some polish, especially in regards to the leaps. Rollins was a standout with her very unique full twisting double stag jump.

Rotation 4: BYU BB, SUU FX

Mason (BYU): Solid bhs, loso series, just a little bit of bent knees. Cat leap, side aerial is well done. Switch leap, split jump is good. Double full with just a step back, good start for BYU. 9.800

Cacciola (SUU): Very clean double tuck to start, I like how her knees were very distinctly together in the ro bhs as well as the double tuck. Front full, front layout is well controlled. Switch ring, switch half is nice, solid ring position. Finishes with a Rudi to split jump, travels backwards a bit on the jump. Very nice opening routine. 9.875

Patton (BYU): Front aerial, split jump, hits the split nicely. Switch leap, split jump, again, really nice splits. Bhs, loso is well controlled. Dismounts with a stuck 1.5. 9.875

Vultaggio (SUU): High double pike to open. Switch half, popa, nice 180s. Back 1.5 to front lay. Double tuck to finish, chest is a little bit down, but controls it well. 9.900

Margraf (BYU): Front aerial, back tuck is slow but connected. Switch half, beat jump, her front leg looked a little bent on the switch half. Dismounts with a front full and a tiny hop forwards. 9.925

Smith (SUU): Whip, double tuck to open with a slide back. Tour jete half, split full, short of split on both, but especially the first leap. Finishes with a rudi, split jump. The jump looked a little wild and the front leg might’ve been low. 9.850 is a little high to me.

Ono (BYU): Bhs, bhs, loso with a balance check. Good full turn. Straddle jump, straddle 1/2 is fine. Dismounts with a stuck cartwheel gainer full. 9.700

McClain (SUU): Opens with a double pike, takes a small step forward. Very clean back 1.5, front lay as the second pass. Switch half, wolf full is good. Ends with a double tuck with excellent control. 9.950

Dudley (BYU): Bhs, loso. Switch leap, straddle jump, straddle quarter, great split positions on all three of those. Cat leap, side aerial. Back 1.5 with a hop. 9.825

Schwartze (SUU): Opens with a front double full with a small crossover step, but relatively well controlled. Switch leap, tour jete half, wolf full, her front leg was short on the initial switch leap. Rudi, to loso is very nicely done. 9.925

Rollins (BYU): Switch leap, straddle quarter, great spilt positions. Front aerial, bhs, loso with a check. Lovely full turn with her leg just slighty up. Stuck gainer full to dismount. Excellent as always.

Gull (SUU): Double pike with a slide back to start. Back 1.5, front 1/2, split jump. The front 1/2 was a bit low, but she worked out of it well. Tour jete half, wolf full is fine. Closes with a double tuck that’s very well controlled with her chest nicely up. 9.800

FINAL: SUU 196.925, BYU 196.475

Well that was a really high quality meet after both teams got a slow start during the first rotation. Scores got a little bit silly in the last rotation, but lots of excellent gymnastics all around. Both teams are improving and approaching midseason form, with Southern Utah getting a season best 196.925. Conference competition in the MRGC is going to keep heating up!

VT: Kylie Eaquinto 9.900
UB: Lindsay Hunter 9.925
BB: Mina Margraf 9.925
FX: Karley McClain 9.950
AA: Karley McClain 39.475

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Live blog by Rebecca Williams

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