The Balance Beam Situation

Because gymnastics is a comedy, not a drama

Saturday Meets

Final Scores:
Georgia 197.225, Kentucky 193.125
Ohio State 197.625, Denver 195.450 (Ohio State got a 49.600 on floor. This is our second 49.600 on floor of the weekend. Unless you cured cancer as a second pass, you do not deserve a 49.600)

Georgia, Nebraska, Stanford, Penn State, and Ohio State are all in action on this busier than usual Saturday. I’ll be paying attention primarily to how Georgia manages to score at home with a definite opportunity to pick up ground on Utah if they convert well.

UCLA has confirmed that Lichelle Wong suffered an Achilles injury yesterday during the three-minute touch before floor. The extent of the injury has not been specifically confirmed, so we can only hope it’s not a complete tear, but…McDonald last week, Wong this week…this team might as well hold training sessions at urgent care.

In other news, congratulations are in order to former Arkansas gymnast Casey Jo Magee, who achieved her qualifying score today at the WOGA Classic to qualify to the Covergirl Classic as an all-arounder.

Georgia is soon to get underway against Kentucky at 4:00 ET / 1:00 PT. Moffatt and Breazeal are in on beam today for the Gymdogs, so that will be a rotation to watch. No Kaylan Earls on any event because of an Achilles-related issue. Trend?


Big start for Georgia with a 9.850 from Davis on vault.  As an elite, this was her weakest event, but she has carved out a solid place for herself in this lineup.  Bodes well for a big rotation to start with 9.850.

Georgia is not really able to pick up on the momentum from Davis’s opening, continuing to hang out in that 9.8 territory until Breazeal’s 9.750.  It will be a fine rotation, but Hires and Ding need to go in the 9.9s to make it big. The best teams are consistently going over 49.400 this year, so anything below that is just OK, especially at home.

Hires and Ding do exactly what they needed to with 9.925s to end the rotation at 49.375. It’s just below that 49.400 level, but since Georgia is not relying on vault to beef up their score the way some other teams are, that’s exactly where they need to be. They can pick up ground on bars, where a lot of teams are still satisfied with something like 49.200.  UGA can (and should) go higher than that.

Worley, Davis, Nuccio, and Ding are the highlights of the Georgia bar rotation, so if they can get Tanella and Couch going over 9.800, it’s a good day. And that’s exactly what happens with Tanella and Couch going 9.825, 9.850.

Important that Chelsea Davis goes 9.900 on bars. She’s been capable of it since Day 1, but there’s always been a handstand here and there that keeps her from it. Kat Ding finishes the rotation with 9.900 as well (when will she get a 10? I need it more than she does.) so Georgia scores another 49.375.

Halfway: Georgia 98.750, Kentucky 97.050. Georgia should expect a score in the 197s based on these first two rotations.

Good to see Moffatt post a 9.825 on beam. I certainly like her much better than Tanella in this position, but who knows if the lineup will stay this way.

A fine 9.775 from Breazeal on beam should boost this team, as they now have the two question mark routines out of the way without a mistake. (Although, perhaps Shayla is always a question mark.)

Oh Shayla. Oh Shayla. I would say I jinxed you, but it’s happened way too many times to be my fault. An 8.700 on beam with two falls. This was supposed to be Shayla’s year, but it’s still a miracle when she hits all three events.

After three rotations, Georgia stands at 147.775 to Kentucky’s 145.500.  Georgia can still hit 197 with a 49.225 on floor, though that’s no given.  They’ll have to put Shayla back together.

So, as we finish, Georgia scores a 49.450 on floor with Couch getting a 9.950.  A 9.950.  Again.

FINAL: Georgia 197.225, Kentucky 193.125.  


Also, Ohio State scored something crazy. See the top of the post. I can’t deal with this.  What is happening?

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