LIVE BLOG: No 34 Ball State, No. 36 North Carolina and No. 57 SEMO at No. 17 Missouri

This is the last meet before conference championships next weekend, and this is a fascinating match-up with significant postseason implications: The hosting Tigers are virtually locked into a regionals berth, though they have plenty of room to improve in both the SEC and national rankings. The Tar Heels, meanwhile, are right smack dab on the regionals bubble. This is their first of two chances to boost their prospects by dropping at least one of the two sub-196 scores weighing them down. This is the first of two meets for Ball State, who’ll host MAC rival Western Michigan Sunday. The Cardinals have been undeniably hot, winning their last 12 meets, and are poised to make regionals for the first time in nearly a quarter century.   SEMO has already been eliminated from postseason consideration, but has several individuals who can challenge for event titles including reigning MIC Gymnast of the Week Lindsey Ockler.  You can watch along at home on SECN+ and live scores will (allegedly) be available here

Rotation One: Missouri vault, SEMO bars, UNC beam, Ball State floor

Apologies, it’s a quad screen with stationary camera, no commentary, lineups, or scores, so I’m going to do my best with IDs!

Lawrence? (Mizzou): Y full with significant pike-down and a step forward. McCrary (Mizzou): Pretty Y full, mostly straight throughout and just a minor adjustment on the landingSchreiber (Mizzou): Excellent height and distance on her Y full, small scoot back. . 

Celestine (Mizzou): Fabulous Y 1.5 in the air. Slightly underrotated with a minor scoot back.

Moore (Mizzou): Her usual big, flared Y 1.5, off to the side but initially within the lines. Stepped out and over them, though.

SEMO): Big piked Tkatchev to an exemplery Ezhova. Significant swim on her squat-on and an overarched handstand to a solid DLO with a hop. (SEMO): 

(SEMO): Piked Tkatchev a hair close on the regrasp. Nam (UNC): FABULOUS RO 1.5, excellent rise and a stick. Ruthberg (Ball St): Fhs Rudi to straddle with a bit of travel back, but good form and well-controlled. 

Thompson (UNC): Strong position on her switch side. Slide down to straddle, very cool. RO back 1.5 just under and has to take a small step back.

Culton (UNC): Exemplary bhs loso. Cat leap to switch side, 180 but a little off-kilter. Front aerial to split jump, perfect. Kicked out full turn, great. Side gainer full, good rise and form in the air, just a minor hop back.

Knower (UNC): Her usual badass front toss. Very shy on her split 3/4 and she comes off. Flawless RO back 1.5, stuck.

Schulze (UNC): Switch leap to wolf jump, solid position and landing. Really committed to the position on her full turn. RO back 1.5, another stick. Clutch performance from the transfer!

Greenlow? (UNC): Hitch kick to switch 3/4 with a hip check. Front toss to beat with a significant hip check. Piked gainer full with a small step.

(Ball St): Double tuck went OOB. Fhs front full was well-controlled. Tucked Shushunova to prone, so fun! Gorgeous double pike to finish.

Ball (State): Good position on the Popa, wolf full was a bit angled. Nice fhs full to front pike. Oh, too bad, crunched landing on the double pike. May have put her hand down?

(Ball State): Lacking control on the double tuck landing. Love the power in her wolf full! Front full to front lay with good rise. Strong finish.

(Ball State): Cheats the switch full to wolf full a hair, but really good extension on both in the air. Back 2.5 to front tuck and, unfortunately, sits it. Looked really nice. I think this is a sax version of Boulevard of Broken Dreams? Lost the position in her front lay and had to pike her Rudi, but a solid finish.

AFTER ONE ROTATION: UNC 49.000, Mizzou 48.975

Scores and lineups are still a mystery overall. Familiar as I am with the Tigers’ vault lineup as CGN’s resident SEC editor, I can tell you that was not their best rotation so expect some angry bars in rotation two!

The Tar Heels lead by a slim margin, and will need to keep up that 49 pace throughout the rest of the meet if they want to improve their ranking!

Rotation Two: Ball State vault, Missouri bars, SEMO beam, UNC floor

Celestine (Mizzou): Good form on her VL. Her usual excellent epynomous dismount, stuck.

(Ball State): Fhs pike, beautiful form in the air and a definitive stick!

Shreieber (Mizzou): Lost a little form in her bail to handstand, but a fabulous DLO stuck (albeit with chest foreward): 

Speller? (SEMO): Comes off on her front aerial, but repeats and connects to bhs no problem. Lovely front toss to scale. 

Pfizer (Ball State): Beautiful big FHS piked half with a hop back. 

Greenlow? (UNC): A little under on her front double twist, but sells it well. 

(Ball State): Strong Yfull with tons of distance and a leaning back college stick. 

Henry (Ball State): Phenomenal Y 1.5, stuck. Best vault of the evening. 

Moore (Mizzou): Sky high Tkatchev. Ball a little off-kilter. Big FTDT with a step back. 

(UNC): Sits a front 1.5 (I think). 

Webb (SEMO): Another solid Liukin. Full turn with an adjustment. Switch split to split half with some hesitation, didn’t quite hit the positions. Front aerial to Korbut, beautifully done. 

Hu (Mizzou): Great height on her Church. Pak, no problem. Excellent full pirouette to double tuck with a small hop back. 

Culton (UNC): Front lay to front full, not a ton of height but solid landings. Switch ring to switch side, gorgeous positions on both. Front lay to Rudi, great!

Moffitt (SEMO): Rock solid bhs loso with lovely extension. Cat leap to a shy switch half to beat. Full turn, good. 

Huffendiek? (Mizzou): Blind change to straddled Jaeger and comes off. Excellent blind full to double tuck nearly stuck. 

Whoever’s curating Mizzou’s arena playlist, I appreciate you <3

Ingle (SEMO): Switch leap to switch side, just under 180. Good full turn. RO back double full with chest a bit down but strong in the air. 

Forbes (UNC): Crunched landing on her double pike. Cheats the switch full to straddle half, but gorgeous extension throughout. Holds onto her double tuck a hair to long and has to take a big step out. 

Patrick (Mizzou): Excellent straddled Jaeger to a perfectly tight bail. DLO, stuck. Awesome routine for the senior! 

Knower (UNC): Double pike great in the air but just underrotated and has to take a lunge forward. Front full to front lay, very floaty. Switch full to a shy switch half (?)… Y’all, it is so hard to see these routines! Strong double tuck to close. 

AFTER TWO ROTATIONS: Mizzou 49.225, UNC 48.725, Ball State 49.225

If my math is correct (and it may very well not be since I’m relying on my brain and Twitter scores), Mizzou and Ball State are neck and neck! 

I told you this meet would be fascinating!

Rotation Three: UNC vault, Ball State bars, Missouri beam, SEMO floor

Lawrence (Mizzou): Switch leap to split, lovely. Tidy loso bhs. RO back 1.5, stuck. From what I saw, one of her best routinesof the season. And it’s a 9.975 in the lead-off for the freshman announced to the arena!

(Ball State): A beautiful full pirouette to stuck double tuck.

(UNC): Very nice Y full, slightest pike but a STICK stick. 

(Ball State): Good VL): Blind full to double tuck with a minor hop back. 

(SEMO): Nicely done front lay to Rudi. 

McCrary (Mizzou): Leg-up check on her bhs loso. Stuck gainer pike full. 

Fink? (UNC): Gorgeous Y full, not a ton of distance but another stick. 

(Ball State): Excellent blind change to straddled Jaeger caught on her fingertips. Nice position on her bail. 

Knower (UNC): Powerful Y full, clean in the air and just a small bounce back. 

(SEMO): Back 1.5, good. Front full to big front lay, nicely done. 

Davis (Mizzou): No problems on her full turn. Aggressively floaty bhs loso with a finessed check. Fantastic front toss. Beat to sheep with a shoulder drop. 

Forbes (UNC): Just under on her Y 1.5, landed a little stiff-legged necessitating a step back. 

Dekanoidze (UNC): Fabulous Y full, stuck. A little torso adjustment on the landing, but great. 

Ball State): Some form on her Tkatchev. Nice, open FTDT with a step back. 

Sheremeta (Mizzou): Bhs loso with a leg up check. Front aerial to beat to Shushunova, very fun combination and nicely one. Tucked gainer full off the end, stuck. 

(Ball State): Blind change a hair late, but a huge Tkatchev. Good position on the bail. Blind change to a phenomenal double front half out, stuck. No cowboy or stagger from this POV. 

Hu (Mizzou): Her usual cool mount and handstand series. Perfect Y full turn. Front aerial to one foot to front aerial, perfect. Beat to split 3/4, fantastic. Needle scale. Bhs side gainer full with a college stick, but it’s Senior Night and she’s been hosed so many times that I won’t be mad if they throw a 10. That was an exemplary routine! Boooo, it’s a 9.975

(SEMO): Powerful double tuck, not sure if the lunge was controlled. Slightly shy on her leap positions, but a strong performance overall. 

Schreiber (Mizzou): Kicked out full turn, lovely. Bhs los loso with a little shoulder dip. Beautiful low beam choreo. Switch half to split, gorgeous extension throughout. Beat to side gainer full, stuck. Clearly not a 10, but had 10 vibes except for that one check. 

AFTER THREE ROTATIONS: Mizzou 49.525, Ball State 49.125, UNC, 49.125, SEMO 49.075

49-plus rotations for all four teams, which is fun! Mizzou is pulling away as expected, but my goodness Ball State is keeping things interesting… UNC recovered nicely from the last two rotations and is in good shape to snag a useable away score with their usual bars rotation. 

Rotation Four: SEMO vault, UNC bars, Ball State beam, Missouri floor  

(SEMO): Strong Y full with a bit of pike down and hop forward.

Schreiber (Mizzou): Front full to back lay with a split jump rebound, nicecly done.

Henry (Ball State): Did a full-on Skinner to try and save her leaps, but came off. Strong bhs loso. RO back 1.5 with a hop back

Knower (UNC): Geinger with big leg sep. Lost some tension on her bail to handstand, but a phenomenal FTDT, stuck. 

(SEMO): Slightly underrotated Y full with a step forward

Kratzer (Mizzou): Quick double tuck with a front foot side back. Good position on her Popa series. Lost a little height on her front full to front lay, crunched the landing. 

Evans (Ball State): Lovely, floaty bhs loso. RO back 1.5 with a scoot back. 

(SEMO): Another crunchy Y full, slightly off to the side and had to step forward and tho the side. 

Fink? (UNC): straddled Jaeger with some form. Good bail to handstand. Lovely DLO with another stick. 

(SEMO): Best Y full of the bunch, just a little pike down and negligible scoot back. 

McCrary (Mizzou): Nice opening Rudi. Switch side to Popa, good position and control.

Culton (UNC): Gorgeous stalder to Tkatchev. Some leg sep on her bail to handstand. Full pirouet to double tuck and ANOTHER stick for the Heels!

Ruthberg (Ball State): Some form on her bhs loso bhs. Very solid RO side gainer full, stuck. 

Schaeger? (UNC): Blind change to a huge straddled Jaeger. Clear hip to hand, good. Nice tension in her bail. FTDT with a small hop forward. 

Sumner (Ball State): Side aerial to bhs, very well done with excellent extension. 

Sheremeta (Mizzou): Fabulous fhs to double front full. Great oversplit on her straddle series. Fhs Rudi to floaty loso, fantastic! Shushunova to back spin, very cool. 

Dekanoidze (UNC): Superlative Maloney to bail. So much control throughout. Pristine DLO, stuck. I know Mizzou judges are stingy even by non-SEC standards, but GIVE IT UP! That was perfect. 

Volpe (Ball State): Beat to a super shy split 3/4 with a leg-up check. Stuck side gainer full. 

Celestine (Mizzou): Big FTDT to open. Switch full, great! Front full to front lay, big air on both.Big lunge out of her double tuck. Couldn’t tell you if it was controlled or not because she’s about two inches even on my 55 inch screen and the entire team was standing in the way, but it was a beauty in the air!  

Shaffer? (Mizzou): Rudi to a floaty loso, good. Strong position on her switch ring. Double tuck, very nice! 

Yaaaaay! Scores have kicked in just in time for me to update the final scores… 

FINAL: 197.250, Ball State 196.400, UNC 196.275, SEMO 194.675

VT: Victoria Henry, 9.925
UB: Sienna Schreiber, 9.950
BB: Addison Lawrence and Helen Hu, 9.975
FX: Amari Celestine, 9.925
AA: Sienna Schreiber, 39.625

READ THIS NEXT: What is an SID and Why Should You Care? 

Live blog by Claire Billman 

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