Both Georgia and Stanford are currently languishing at the very bottom of the cool teams table, just above the also-rans. The top teams have now established a pace well into the 197s, so the highs for both of these teams (196.200 for Georgia and 196.025 for Stanford) are beginning to seem shabby by comparison. Stanford will be pleased by having better start than the team did last season, but Georgia will start to feel the pull of being left behind without a bigger score this weekend.
I wouldn’t characterize the situation for either team as anything nearing urgency, especially for a Stanford team that probably won’t peak until 11 minutes before Super Six again, but this will be the fourth meet for Georgia already, which means early-season kinks like beam composition credit and 9.5s and 9.6s on floor need to go away. We’re now starting to move out of “It’s early in the season” territory.
Formatting things a little differently today. The lack of Ivana Hong is hurting me in my heart and brain and is going to hurt Stanford in its score and . . . score.
Christa Tanella was legitimately enjoyable in that interview, talking about keeping Shayla off the equipment because she’s totally going to get injured.
Brandie Jay coming in on bars is the only major change for Georgia from Friday. We don’t know what happened to Hong yet, but it will be rough for Stanford without her with routines coming in like Spinner on bars.
1. Davis – Yfull – very strong, stuck landing, good direction and excellent form. Strong start. Distance and amplitude are the only missing parts. (9.850) I could have seen 9.875-9.900 for that, actually. It would have received it later in the lineup.
2. Persinger – Yfull – too piked in the air and a major bounce out of it. Won’t score well. (9.750) Davis was more than a tenth better than that.
3. Cheek – Yfull – very nice stick, very similar to Davis with perhaps a bit stronger leg form. (9.925)
4. Rogers – Y1.5, near stick but takes a hop on the salute that she would have had to take anyway, a bit of direction but stronger than Friday’s vault. (9.900) The judge who gave a 9.950 credited it as a stick, but I wouldn’t have.
5. Hires – She didn’t get a great block at all and lost amplitude, held onto the stick, but had to swim for it with a very low chest. (9.825)
6. Jay – Y1.5, better direction than Rogers had but a hop forward on her landing. Probably the best I’ve seen her do, more contained. (9.900)
1. S. Morgan -piked jaeger ot overshoot is strong, good line, big step out of double front. Nice. (9.750)
2. Dayton – tkatchev opening lacks amplitude and she comes off, never got her grip, hits her handstands well, sticks a DLO with not a ton of flight. (9.200)
3. A. Morgan – hits piked jaeger, not a ton of complexity in this routine and it all feels a little rushed, but her DLO is nice and high and stuck. (9.850)
4. Vaculik -way close on her stalder shoot and has to muscle up, otherwise very strong routine so far, good elite amplitude, hop salute on the DLO. They are so pleased to have her back. (9.675)
5. Shapiro -handstands are beautiful, high staddle jaeger, clean pak, missing almost nothing in this routine, comes in a little short on her DLO and hops forward. (9.850)
6. Spinner – tkatchev opening, clean line, some leg separations, late on her blind full and a major step on the double back. She has potential on this event, but it’s clear why she hasn’t competed before. Important hit to erase the fall, though. (9.725)
Rotation 1 Scores: Georgia 49.400, Stanford 48.850
Georgia back to its comfort zone on vault with a very strong performance. Davis and Cheek vaulted about as well as they can, and there’s still some landing improvement that can come from Rogers and Jay. Hires and Persinger vaulted far from their best. Don’t be surprised by some home 49.500s as the season progresses.
Stanford certainly missed having Hong but also lost the opportunity to pick up tenths after a mistake from Vaculik and a slightly missed landing from Shapiro. Those potential 9.9s could have saved things and helped go over 49. This rotation is not as weak as the score reflects, though.
1. Cheek – a little struggle on first handstand, sticks the DLO the way we saw in those training videos that made everyone want her in the lineup. Good start. (9.875)
2. Jay -just catches her shaposh, sticks her tuck full dismount, strong debut for competition in this routine. (9.900)
3. Tanella -hits first hs, her biggest mistakes are late pirouettes, overbalances her final handstand and takes a step on the double tuck, far weaker than Friday’s routine. (9.750)
4. Rogers -stalder tkatchev is hit, and bail hs is clean, almost mostly stuck landing again on her tuck full, hop on salute. (9.875)
5. Worley -slightly flopping in catching her bail hs but fine, the handstands all could be better. Shayla-ed the DLO, lands short, but holds onto it with a big step forward. (9.850) Could have gone lower.
6. Davis -wonderful tkatchev as alwalys, hits bail hs, hitting all her handstands, sticks(?) tuck full dismount with a step salute. (9.900)
1. A. Morgan – Yhalf with that major hop that she usually has, otherwise fine form (9.725)
2. Rice -Yfull with a hop and a low chest on the landing. OK but just OK. (9.775)
3. Chuang -Another perfectly fine Yfull (9.825)
4. Vaculik -great distance on her Omelianchik, but tucks to land and takes a big step forward. (9.800)
5. Dayton – best vaulter on the team because she always sticks that Yhalf. Well done. (9.925)
6. Hanset – front pike half, lands low and has to take a big hop back. (9.800)
Rotation 2 Scores: Georgia 98.800, Stanford 97.975
Georgia now on pace for a 197.600, but that’s not going to happen. Unick is doing exhibition on bars, jaeger was far away but she fingertipped it, falls on double front. Fix the dismount and this could be a workable backup. I wasn’t completely happy with all of Georgia’s handstands this week. They weren’t missing them completely, but several of them we short in borderline deduction land. The freshmen are really standing out today. Aside from Cheek, the upperclassmen were just OK by their own standard. Davis had a great routine but she can and usually does stick that landing, which would have taken her to the 9.950 she usually gets.
Stanford is currently lacking both amplitude and landing on most of the vaults, two qualities that feed into each other. Aside from Dayton, none of these vaults can expect to go any higher than 9.800 until the tenths on landing are resolved.
1. Cheek – clean full turn, hits two loso series well, hits moonwalk (I can’t . . .), sticks gainer full dismount. Clean leadoff routine, good improvement. (9.875)
2. Tanella – major break on walkover but stays on, watch for the acro connection now, her splits seem improved? nowhere close on her side somi and comes off the beam, no way to save it. See, I compliment her interview at the beginning and now she has a bad meet. (8.800)
3. Persinger – slight wobble on L turn, good aerial, another huge break but she did well to stay on the beam. It will be a low score, though. She was going well before that. Hits 1.5 dismount. (9.625)
4. Rogers – minor wobbles on dance but should get dance combo, hits bhs 3/4, aerial + bhs is good this time at least to me, a few wobbles but probably the best she’s done, a little floppy crooked leg on her bhs full but she hits and sticks the dismount. Still problems over SV. 9.8 SV. I spoke too soon about her getting it. I thought she would/should have. Problems problems problems. Her previous mistakes have made judges wary about giving her connection, perhaps, judging her more harshly than they would judge others. (9.550)
5. Worley – hitting confidently, her usual great routine and a bit better on the gainer full landing than we have seen. (9.875)
6. Earls – hits two loso series, leaps look good, minor correction on side aerial to side position, step back on the cowboyed double back dismount. Good routine. (9.900).
1. S. Morgan – she may have died on the floor, no just a music problem, hits double pike, major stumble on her 1.5 + layout and is nowhere hear around on her layout and falls, a little short on the double tuck. Rough start. (9.000)
2. Rice – Strong double pike start, she looks so much like Cassie, slight stumble out of layouts second pass but stays in, falls on her turn. Hey, Kim Kelly. Low double tuck. We get word that Ivana is fine. (9.025)
3. Shapiro – slight stumble on her 1.5 + front full, a bit low on her double back, fine tumbling but not the most secure she can do, 1.5 + front tuck. OK but needs more time. (9.800)
4. Hanset – 2.5 + front tuck to mount, hit routine with proficient tumbling. Good recovery routine. (9.875)
5. A. Morgan – Big stumble out of double arabian that will drop her score significantly, but otherwise good tumbling and expression. I think I might like this choreography. Why is she not anchoring?(9.850)
6. Chuang – low landing on the double back mount, layout + layout full is almost completely in control but does almost step out, 1.5 + layout dismount is strong. There’s not a lot of difficulty in this lineup aside from Morgan’s mount, but they recovered to hit. (9.825)
Rotation 3 Scores: Georgia 147.625, 146.350
Whitney Kirby takes a fall on her series in beam exhibition. Georgia had a couple highlights in that rotation. Cheek looked strong and Earls was fine. Shayla showed her usual nice beam work. Otherwise, they cannot continue putting up Rogers until they are positive she’s going to get her 10 SV. Tanella was all over the place and Persinger had a major break, so all told 48.825 could have been worse based on the level of performance.
It was a bizarre fall from Rice on her turn that killed Stanford’s floor rotation after Shona Morgan’s fall. Ashley Morgan is the class of this group as she has been for the last couple of seasons, and there are some solid leadoff-type routines peppered throughout the rest of the lineup, but Hong and Shapiro will need to give them more than the 9.8s the others can provide for this to eventually become a 49.300 rotation.
1. Earls – double pike mount is strong, this was the only good routine in that very first meet against Oklahoma, and she’s hitting again. (9.900)
2. Tanella -hits double pike, lands out on her second pass before the stag jump, but did the flag go up? Rudi dismount is fine. There were definitely parts of that heel that were OOB on the second pass. Apparently not. OK. (9.850)
3. Hires – slightly low chest on double pike landing. This is much improved so far, again low on the double tuck landing but it’s a hit. (9.875)
4. Persinger – Similary to Hires, she’s hitting her tumbling with confident landings but I’d like to see a higher chest in the landing position, underrotated on her rudi with a hop forward. Areas to improve for her, but she’s starting to inch toward her potential. (9.825)
5. Jay – good double pike, strong landing on front 2/1 + tuck, this is the best she’s been until the double tuck dismount, overrotated and bounced well back, landing also looked a little locked. Otherwise the tumbling is more powerful than Hires or Persinger. (9.850)
6. Worley – good double pike, crazy legs on middle pass with a minor stumble out of it, rudi is fine with a low chest. Hit routine, improvement from Friday. (9.900)
1. S. Morgan – wobble on front aerial before a split jump, good loso series, more wobbles here, she looks close but minorly just off on all her acro. (9.675)
2. Vaculik – hits loso, split positions are good, stumble on her side aerial but remains on the beam well, big step back out of double full dismount. Too many stumbles. (9.800)
3. A. Morgan – big wobble on loso series but saves as well, minor step out of punch front and another minor step out of double tuck dismount. (9.800)
4. Spinner – She was the 9.900 star last season. Performing that was right now. Hits double full with maybe a minor step. Should be the best score so far. (9.925)
5. Hanset – check on her loso series, like the beam caught her a little earlier than she was expecting, another check on the aerial and then again on the side somi, should be similar to Vaculik and Morgan in scoring. Hits 1.5 dismount. (9.750)
6. Rice – takes a wobble on her opening acro, but I’m pleased to see her on beam. Slight check on series, sticks gainer full. Fine debut, but not a packed or lengthy routine. (9.775)
Final Scores: Georgia 197.000, Stanford 195.400
We saw some Georgia scoring at this meet, particularly in the last rotation that could realistically have gone several tenths lower and still reflected reality, and I wouldn’t look at this performance and say it was a 197, though it was clearly the strongest performance of the year so far. Vault and bars are farther along than beam or floor, and I was impressed with Jay and Rogers on both those events, moving toward being worhy of those consistent 9.9s that we will expect from them every week. The consistency isn’t there on beam (and the lineup probably still needs some tweaking; it’s the event where Couch is missed), and the tumbling on floor is just OK but will pale in comparison to some of the more powerful teams. Kati Breazal hits a perfectly fine floor exhibition to finish the day.
Without Hong, Stanford looked generally depleted and uncertain today. It’s clear that landings have not been as much of a priority because the Cardinal incurred multiple tenths per rotation because of big bounces out of landings. Right now, we’re seeing a situation where the freshmen are just OK and not yet ready to bring in those notable scores, so it will be up to the likes of Vaculik and Shapiro to be a bit more secure to make up for the major scores lost from last year’s seniors.