TUCSON, Ariz. – The No. 13 Arizona women’s gymnastics team were unable to rally back against a strong No. 4 Utah team. Despite the strong effort, Arizona fell 197.825-194.425 on Friday night in Salt Lake City, Utah.
To begin the night, the Wildcats started on bars and earned a 48.800.
“Our freshmen had some rough spots that they don’t normally have,” head coach Bill Ryden said. “We had some good people fighting. We had some good performances. Allie Flores did great as usual. Lexi Mills really held on to finish her routine and did great for us. We knew the opportunities were there for us, we just weren’t taking advantage of them.
Leading Arizona once again was junior Allie Flores with a score of 9.850. Flores earned a third-place tie alongside Utah’s Tory Wilson and Hailee Hansen. Behind her, Lexi Mills and Selynna Felix-Terrazas earned twin scores of 9.775. Rounding out the scoring were freshmen Gabby Laub and Krysten Howard with scores of 9.725 and 9.675, respectively.
Despite a difficult start on bars, the Wildcats stepped up and earned no less than a 9.800 on each of their five scores on vault.
Senior Shana Sangston started off the scoring with a career-high 9.825. Freshman Mackenzie Valentin tied her season-high of 9.825 to match Sangston. Amber Wobma, Laub and Shelby Edwards provided Arizona three scores of 9.800 to finish the second rotation.
“We had some good efforts and really had some good vaults,” Ryden said. “At least we scored a 49.050.”
Entering their strongest rotation as a team, the Wildcats were ready to rally back to cut Utah’s lead as they scored their highest score of the evening on floor.
Wobma and Flores led the team with two scores of 9.875. Felix-Terrazas contributed yet another significant score with a 9.850. Behind her were Sangston and Klarenbach who scored 9.800 and 9.750, respectively. The Wildcats rallied for a floor score of 49.150.
“Floor was exceptional as always,” Ryden said. “We had some great routines despite some of the difficulties we faced. Kristin had some deductions from her first pass but was able to stay on her feet for a pretty good routine that provided us a score that we really needed.”
The Wildcats ended the night on beam, earning a team total of 47.425, despite recording three falls.
“We had been hanging close with Utah up until that point,” Ryden said. “There were nerves that I don’t usually see in some of the girls. Four falls on beam is not okay. But Allie and Lexi did great and really performed well on beam tonight. ”
Mills recorded a season-high 9.850 and won the second-place title overall. Allie Flores provided a 9.800. Behind her came scores from Edwards, Wobma and Fox/Sangston.
For the first time in two weeks, the Wildcats recorded an all-around competitor. Flores took the second place title with a total score of 39.350.
“Allie really stepped up,” Ryden said. “She had a great meet. I’m very proud of her. She earned a new personal high on the all-around tonight. Good for her. She really stepped up tonight.”
From here, Arizona will continue on the road for a quad meet in Dallas, Texas against No. 2 Oklahoma, No. 3 LSU and Kentucky on Saturday, Feb. 15 at 4 p.m. MST. For continued coverage of Arizona Gymnastics, follow the team at facebook.com/ArizonaGymnastics and on Twitter @AZGymnastics.