Saturday Live Blog – February 25, 2017

Saturday, February 25
Scores Watch
1:00 ET/10:00 PT – Brown, Cornell, Penn @ Yale Ivy $
2:00 ET/11:00 PT – [21] Arkansas @ Michigan State LINK BTN+
2:00 ET/11:00 PT – Lindenwood @ Centenary LINK FREE
4:00 ET/1:00 PT – Arizona @ [6] UCLA LINK P12
4:00 ET/1:00 PT – Pitt @ Penn State LINK FREE
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – [5] Utah @ Arizona State LINK P12
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – [19] Cal, [24] Utah State, SEMO @ [15] Nebraska LINK FREE
7:30 ET/4:30 PT – [16] George Washington, Kent State @ NC State LINK ACC

The Pac-12 moves to the forefront today, and Alabama’s inability to reach 197 yesterday has presented the opportunity for both Utah and UCLA to move  ahead.

In-progress RQS rankings are as follows:

UCLA needs 196.650 to move ahead of Alabama.
Utah needs 197.150 to move ahead of Alabama.
UCLA needs 197.400 to guarantee passing Utah.

The big opportunity today belongs to Nebraska. With a 194.8 still to drop, if the Huskers were to score a season high, they’d move ahead of Auburn, Missouri, Iowa, and Washington and be dangerously close to challenging Michigan and Kentucky as well. Cal also has an opportunity to move up, potentially passing Illinois, Auburn, and Washington with a season high of its own.

Arizona still has a low 193 to get rid of, so while they temporarily sit in a nerve-wracking 31st in the in-progress rankings, they could move as high as 21st by scoring into the 196s today.

File this one under JUST THE BLEAKEST: Without the services of McGlone or Bargiacchi today, Arkansas was able to muster just four competitors on floor. Arkansas was never replete with depth, but heading into the season, I would not have picked them as Team Most Likely to Put Up Four.

Arkansas does have a couple 196s on the season already and still sits inside the top 25, so today’s score wasn’t urgent urgent, but they’ll need to, you know, get that fixed. It’s a 185.300 final score. Ouchies. Michigan State goes 195.550.

No Kramer on vault today for UCLA. Floor is Ohashi, Meraz, Toronjo, Cipra, Kocian, Mossett, which is closer to a preferred lineup than what we saw on Monday.

Arizona is leaning Christina Berg to debut on vault and floor today to make up for the loss of Sheppard. In better news, Cindric is returning on beam this week.

The Pac-12 Network is now reminding us of that time Peng got a 9.825 on beam at Utah. Still funny.

While we’re waiting, a reader today brought this little gem to my attention:


But wai…huh? I don’t even think I get it.

Oh, a rare Daggett sighting. Not really, though. Tim is fangirling Kyla, obviously.

Val and Randy with spirit fingers to call the team into the huddle. Massaging Stella Savvidou’s back to generate the pretty.

Rotation 1:

Meraz – VT – great VT, she has really honed those landings. Good open, a little chest down, small slide back, some legs at the end.

Howard – UB – a little close on piked jaeger but solid – clean legs together through the bail – precise on her vertical finishes, sticks double tuck. Strong opener.

Kocian – VT – full – not one of her better landings, a bit more of a bounce back than Meraz, but better height and chest up.

Hendrickson – UB – 1/2 turn to Jaeger, falls – was VERY late on her blind change, missed her release point – whips out a DLO with a step.

Cipra – VT – a typical vault for her in most regards, good in the air, lands a little deep and then a bounce back, farther bounce than Kocian.

Laub – UB – waiting on the score for Hendrickson – she’s like, “could we please?” – butt scrapes the Tkatchev a little but gets through it – legs together on bail – good final cast – hop back DLO. Good one.

Impressed so far by Arizona’s final cast handstands of their routines. So many people miss them short, but theirs have been precise.

Savvidou – VT – also a larger bounce back on her full, a little more piking than the last couple vaulters –

Felix-Terrazas – UB – a little late on giant full, nice high tkatchev – sticks a double tuck dismount – two giant fulls in that routine, both finished a little past vertical, but those were the major things.

Ross – VT – not her best landing, she has been sticking – bounces back on this one, but otherwise quite strong, only a touch of piking but it was there.

Berg – UB – piked jaeger, a little close with the bent eblows on catch – solid on her bail – arches her final handstand because she was going for it so much, sticks a tuck full dismount. One routine away from a pretty good bars rotation.

Preston – VT – great dynamics – tries to pretend like she stuck it but she didn’t, came in too short this time with a lunge/salute forward –

Ortiz – UB – clear hip to tkatchev, usual hugeness – overshoot – late on giant full into a stuck double tuck, a little deep but stuck.

After 1: Arizona 49.200, UCLA 49.175
Blah vault rotation for UCLA. You’re not going to score much higher than 49.175 when the entire lineup is fulls and they’re all bouncing back, most of them with full-tenth bounces. Arizona got past a fall on bars, a pretty solid rotation. The final handstands were a highlight, though I’d say those scores were on the charitable side especially later in the rotation. Will be something to watch as UCLA goes there.

Guy: “Arizona hasn’t defeated UCLA since 2006, a promising start.”
Tim: “Der, no.”


This guy loves calling the vault “the table.”

Rotation 2:
“Just 16 perfect 10s in all of collegiate gymnastics this year.” #stabstabstab

“Massive winter storm.” IT WASN’T. It was…some rain.

Laub – VT – similar to a lot of the UCLA vaults, though a little more piking and not as much distance – full tenth hop back.

Meraz – UB – a little close on the Ray this time but fine, small leg break on the bail – step back on DLO. Maybe a little more rushed than we’ve seen most of this year.

Feliz-Terrazas – VT – better height, lands significantly chest down with a lot of piking, step back.

Honest – UB – solid tkjatchev – half turn to straddle back, good vertical – chest down on tuck full landing with a step forward, not her usual dismount there. Her leg form is never going to be a treat, but you can tell she’s been working on it.

Mattson – VT – larger hop forward on her y 1/2, maintains a little pike in the hips throughout.

Savvidou – UB – strong pike jaeger – legs together on the bail, nice vertical position – oddly short on her final cast handstand, which is not like her – good finish position on giant full but a large hop back on cowboyed double tuck.

Cindric – VT -back on vault as well now, not too much movement on the landing of the full, just a small hop forward, but did have a pretty significant pike in the air which will take down the score.

Kocian – UB – Chow is solid to pak – that usual leg break – strong Shap 1/2 – pretty much her usual until the dismount – a small step back into a larger step back. Not good dismounts so far for UCLA, mimicking the vault landings.

Swanson – VT – hops forward on a full – also some piking – just comes in a bit short, which will always get hit more than bouncing back.

Ross – UB – borderline opening handstand, just a little hip angle – excellent on the bail and shoot to high – the rest is clean – small bounce back on DLO this time. Tim thinks it’s a stick. Because he doesn’t know what a stick is.

“The judges are a little tougher tonight.”

Five vaulters for Arizona.

Lee – UB – great height on Ray, bent elbows on catch this time – pretty Bhardwaj but catches close on that as well, muscles out of it expertly, though- catches shap 1/2 – just a little more ragged than usual, maybe rushing – hop forward on DLO.

After 2: UCLA 98.600, Arizona 98.000

UCLA on 197 pace after 2. Fine bars, they certainly got the scores, but they did not get the landings at all, which takes away from the impressiveness of the rotation. Scores high but not necessarily CRAZY high. I had Kocian and Ross a half-tenth lower than they went, but it’s sort of what we would expect.

Just a lot of average Yfulls today, but UCLA’s score better because they’re landing chest up and bouncing back rather than piking down.

One of the Glenns almost poked Peng in the eye. WAIT UNTIL AFTER BEAM FOR THAT.

The trailer for the UCLA/Utah all-access looks SOOOO “closeup of plume of chalk in an empty gym.” Heaven.

Rotation 3:
Meraz – BB – still no Gerber – large break on loso series with a leg up wobble – good switch half to wolf, hits her positions – full turn is strong – short on 1.5 dismount with a step back. One of Meraz’s weaker sets.

“Those are like tallion,” says Tim. No idea either.

Mattson – FX – bounce back out of double pike – her floor music is that song you hated that they used in those Cosmopolitan Vegas commercials and thought you were done with until now – switch side popa, popa short of 180 – lowish double tuck but secure.

Mossett – BB – smooth full turn – split to split ring jump, small lean – also a check on her loso series but not as big as Meraz – up on those toes like a monster – side somi to layout full dismount, good promptness this time, leans to try to hold the stick.

Swanson – FX – slide back on her rudi – whip to 2/1, a little low but controls the landing – nice straddles – 2.5 is fine, a little crossed legs with a crossover step. Solid set.

Kocian – BB – aerial to sheep, holds that well without a check, could have been off line – loso series is easy peasy – full turn – just a not-even-a-lean or two in this routine working out of skills – great switch to split – good 2/1, just a quiver of the foot.

Berg – FX – first floor of the year – a little short on double pike but not too bad, not much of a step out – front full to front pike, good shapes on her tumbling elements – bouncy on a tuck jump to wolf jump combo, you can tell leaps aren’t the strength – nice rudi – this should be the in the lineup more. Just needs a pinch more on her passes so that she’s not landing a hair short.

Ross – BB – small lean landing her loso series, but precise in the air as always – fakes the connection on her switch ring to beat jump but everyone accepts it – excellent full turn – aerial is gorgeous, no trouble – side aerial to a stuck full. Great. Will be another big total.

Howard – FX – high double tuck, slides back on her landing and just does keep it in bounds – nice position and landing finish on her straddle and wolf – dances out of front full – lean back on the double pike as well. Fine, just a lack of control on a couple passes.

Peng – BB – Flares – switch and split, no trouble – bhs to layout, right on this time – double turn and her usual leg-up correction that she pretends is like dance – punch front nailed – this is one of her good ones – hard to tell but looks like a little deep landing front layout full dismount with a small hop.

Schneider – FX – well that opening choreography really should require a fitting leo – great control on double pike – triple-element middle pass to front pike, loses some momentum at the end on the pass but pulls around that front pike to a stick – sticks double tuck – some chest down landings but great control.

Ohashi – BB – just does the layout this time (which I don’t mind), but has a leg-up wobble, so I guess might as well do the full if you’re going to have that wobble on the full? – otherwise quite solid – aerial is strong – layout stepout to full dismount with a stick. Great except for the break on the layout.

Arizona scratches Laub on floor as expected

After 3: UCLA 148.100, Arizona 146.975

Good beam rotation from UCLA overall, a couple small errors in each of the big routines but no major faults. It emphasizes just how well this rotation will score if they all actually nail their routines at the same time. Schneider’s landings were a real highlight for Arizona on floor. Great control.

Rotation 4:
Howard – BB – I’m enjoying the teammate casually straddling the vault table to record this routine – hits loso series – pike jump to back tuck, solid, slow in connection but solid – full turn – switch to straddle 1/4, great straddle shape – gainer tuck full, stuck. Ideal start. 9.725? I have to think she didn’t get full SV? Because that was way better than 9.725. INQUIRE.

Ohashi – FX – a slide back on the double tuck this time around – 1.5 to half to split to front tuck – travels a little on it but great individual execution of skills – switch ring and switch 1/2 are fine – a little chest down on double pike but controlled well.

Hendrickson – BB – beat jump to split 3/4, handled well – secure loso series – full turn – switch to split 1/4 – “KEEP BREATHING HAYLIE” – smooth side aerial – sticks gainer full. Another good one.

Hall – FX – She’s going instead of Meraz as originally planned – eh – 1.5 through to double tuck, large lunge back but keeps it in bounds – front full to front pike, another lunge forward, this time OOB – chest down double pike. They’ll want to drop this one.

Cowles – BB – full turn – check on aerial, so now we’ve got series questions – switch to split jump, good positions – standing loso with a check – redoes aerial into back handspring, hits this time – gainer front layout full, step. Lots of pretty potential in this one, reminds me a little of early-days Lexi Mills.

Toronjo – FX – I had the sound off when she competed on Monday, but hearing her routine now I enjoy it, a very slow burn but in a good way – very secure double pike landing – double tuck, a little more chest down this time around compared to Monday but still good control – 1.5 to layout, solid, maybe a little arches around. Another good set for her.

Ortiz – BB – check on loso but not a major one – switch to beat to stag, very high stag – side aerial to full with a hop back.

Cipra – FX – attempting to make a knee brace out of chalk – great double tuck, chest up and controlled – front full to 1/2 to straddle to front tuck from her as well, excellent height and a bit more controlled than Ohashi – hitting her splits – I usually end up liking watching Cipra perform more than her actual choreography, but I’m glad we’re done with the phone routine – huge bounce back out of double pike but it was pretty excellent until that. Still 9.900. Oh, home floor.

Schneider – BB – full turn, nice – kickover front to bhs series, a checkish on the kickover but worked quickly enough into the bhs – splits are not all the way to 180 – beat jump to a sheep she shouldn’t be trying, check – front lay full, hop forward. More breaks in that one than the other beams so far.

I’m proud of Tim for learning about the kickover front. Last season when he saw one he was like, “WHHHHAAAA?”

Kocian – FX – front 2/1, lunged out of it a little more this time than her usual – great 1.5 to 1.5 to stag to knee, they’re really working out these combo middle passes to ideal effect – slightly bouncy in landing her leap combination this time – switch ring, excellent – short on double pike with a step forward. So….9.950! WHY NOT?

Cindric – BB – strong loso series in the form department, just a lean correction at the end – side aerial, also a little check adjusting out of it – split to sheep, not too bad on the sheep shape but still pretty sheepish – gainer pike. Good. Pretty form, just a few checks there.

Mossett – FX – whip to a stuck double tuck – I could watch Hallie Mossett snap all day long – amazing positions on her leaps – nails double pike as well, very difficult leaps to get her difficulty and stuck both her passes. Lovely. Chest down is really the only thing there. 9.975. I mean, if you were going to give 9.9 to Cipra and 9.950 to Kocian, this was like an 11.

I think at first they thought it was a 10. Which was awkward.

UCLA goes 49.625 on floor. Definitely home floor in a bunch of those scores but a huge step up from Monday, that’s for sure.

FINAL: UCLA 197.725, Arizona 196.275

Both will be very happy with those scores. UCLA was good-not-great in this one, not really getting the landings on vault and bars. Beam was strong, but those best beamers did have checks here and there. Mossett pretty much nailed her floor to the best of her ability and Toronjo was close. The others can be more controlled on their landings, which they’ll need to get those same scores in a reality-scored context. But a good showing overall. No major mistakes, working toward ideal lineups, we still need to see more on vault.

Arizona inquired on Howard’s beam, which was raised from 9.725 to 9.925. That’s more like it. So, she was credited with a 9.8 start originally, and then that was bumped up.

Arizona will be pleased with this showing. Vault is still a weakness, but I thought the majority of those beam routines were quite nice, and there’s a lot of potential high scores in those bars routines because they’re not giving away much in built-in deductions.

I’ll be back for the next batch of meets!

Up next is Utah’s visit to ASU and the Nebraska quad, hosting Cal, Utah State, and SEMO.

With UCLA’s score earlier, the Bruins are set to move up to 4th in the new rankings. Utah will be either 5th or 6th depending on performance here, needing that 197.150 get 5th.

I feel like this hype guy at the Nebraska meet is trying to do an impression of Melissa McCarthy doing an impression of Sean Spicer.

Quality of the Nebraska stream is bleak (at least for me), so this may be more Utah/Arizona State focused. We’ll see how things go.

A basketball thing happened on the main TV feed, but the meet is starting online. Routines haven’t yet begun.

Utah is “a team on the rise.” Yes, those new kids on the block. Those underappreciated upstarts.

ASU gets a 10.0 for bow ties.

“Wait, we can break into the 195s!” Womp.

Rotation 1:
Rushton – VT – falls on a tucked Yfull.


Merrell – UB – some muscling up handstands early – good catch on Deltchev but feet in both that and the bail – short final hs – stalder to a stuck double tuck, staggered feet.

“Arizona State is top 50 on all four events.” Womp.

Belkoff – VT – solid full – piking and a hop back but pretty good.

Reinstadtler – UB – good toes – late on 1/2 turn into very nice jaeger, keeps toe point throughout – leg break in the bail – short final hs as well – nice tuck full, step.

Lentz – VT – very similar to Belkoff – piking and a hop back.

“I remember years ago when Arizona State didn’t have six great vaulters.” That’s now.

Skinner – UB – good first hs – crazy legs in her shaposh – solid bail, nice vertical – short cast handstand – holds stick on the tuck full with a bit of a lean 9.950. LOOOLLLL. Utah went to Arizona State with a gift horse too.

Wilson – VT – similar to the other fulls but a slight step up in each category: height, less piking, smaller hop.

Lee – UB – hecht mount – short opening handstand – strong piked jaeger, good extended elbows on the catch – needs to refine cast handstands – sticks tuck full – a couple clearly missed handstands but overall the cleanest set so far. 9.975. LOOOOOLLLLLL.

I guess Utah fans can’t complain about UCLA overscores. Even Amanda is like, “what is this”

Ginn – VT – good open on her full, the first time we’ve seen that – small hop back. Nice.

Lewis – UB – good giant full too tkatchev – more prcise on her casts – loses her leg form on bail – shortish on the final handstand – good stick on DLO. 9.900 for Lewis. One judge gave a 10 for that as well. Same judge as the 10 for Lee.

ASU finishes with the ylayout from Christopherson.

Rowe – UB – dead hang to start – good cast and finish position on giant full – high tkatchev – arches a cast handstand – clean on the bail – iffy final handstands – slide on DLO. Solid except for that arch.

The 10 judge gave Rowe a 9.7. Are you just made of crack in both ways?

49.625 for Utah on bars. 48.725 on vault for ASU.

Well, that was cracky. The actual quality of the routines was pretty good from Utah, a definite step up on the stuck landings, which arrived today and hadn’t been there too much lately. Still need to work on the vertical on those final cast handstands and the leg breaks on the bails and shaps, though they don’t necessarily get hit for that because the judges aren’t in the right place.

So, just the enitre Nebraska vault lineup has 1.5s now and nobody told us? Nice from Houchin (we did know about that one) with a step forward.

Rotation 2:
Lee – VT – pretty full, good stick, pretty well laid out position, just a little lack of distance and a little lean. 9.825, oh look, a actual realistic score.

Rushton for ASU gets octopus legs on her bail hilariously, but she has the tkatchev and the DLO, just needs to figure out how to have a full routine.

Rowe – VT – good height, hop back on her full. 9.850, got the benefit of distance over Lee.

Hart – UB – leg break on half turn – catches tkatchev to overshoot – legs apart on DLO but a stick.

Merrell – VT – loses her legs a little ending her 1.5 and has to take a couple paces forward on it.

Imbus – UB – nice shap and bail combination, pretty, legs together throughout – a short handstand at the end – stalder to double tuck and sits it – struggled through the stalder and had nothing on the double tuck – WE WERE ROOTING FOR YOU.

Robinson – Cal – FX – just a little short on double arabian with a step back but fine. Nice layout shape through 1.5 to front lay.

Lewis – VT – great form, opens on the full, nice dynamics, just the little bounce backward.

Wilson – UB – good giant ful to 1/2 to jaeger, fingertips that one but catches well – a little short of vertical on her bail but pretty precise through this things – step back double tuck – nice.

Skinner – VT – going 5th – DTY – her usual – nice power, pretty good form and then the one-tenth hop back.

Szafranski – lovely height – some leg breaks through the shap and bail – one shortish hs – sticks DLO – nice – more precise than the earlier gymnasts in the handstands – should do quite well for them –

McNatt – VT – SHE LIVES?!?!?!?! – She has an Omelianchik – lands a little lock-legged with a stumble back. They’ve been trying to get her 10.0 into the lineup for like two years. Still not quite there.

Chirstopherson – UB – a little short on first hs – catches tkatchev – nice cast out of it – an arch on ber bail – counter rotates well on shoot back to high – excellent finish position on giant full but comes in deep on her double tuck with a lunge forward.

After 2: Utah 98.800, ASU 98.675

Utah goes 49.175 on a rotation I thought was scored pretty realistically overall. The bars judges and the vault judges are not on the same page so far today.

48.675 is not ideal for ASU on bars, but with a fall and a major mistake, they’ll be glad to get away with that and will take the loose judging.

After 1: Nebraska 49.150, Cal 49.150, USU 49.125, SEMO 46.675

Now that’s a meet! Just saw bits and pieces, but Nebraska is becoming the kind of thing on vault we typically expect them to be.

Houchin – UB – Neb – nice giant full to a tkatchev – flat but caught – very precise cast handstands and bail – nails final handstand – sticks double tuck. This routine is simple but just gorgeous.

Lambert – UB – legs on piked jaeger but good dynamics  – works out overshoot and casts well – sticks tuck full – another good one.

Epperson is up third – a couple more moments of tiny leg breaks than the first two and short on the final handstand, hop back on DLO. Still a solid one, though.

Crouse sticks her tuck full on bars. Nebraska is nailing this rotation so far.

Rotation 3:
Callis – BB – ASU – lean correction on loso series – tight on switch to split but no wobbles –

Schweihofer – UB – Neb – high piked jaeger – a leg sep on the overshoot adn a little late on a half turn – whips out DLO but another stick. Dayum.

Roberts – FX – Utah – bounces back pretty far out of double pike – much better from lay to front rudi – switch side to wolf, a little short on her wolf position – stronger finish after the opening bounce back.

Looks like Laeng fell on bars for Nebraska, but they had five usable hits before that.

Conrad – BB – nice loso series, right on – breaks the connection between switch and back tuck – secure side somi – pretty solid leap shapes – sticks front layout full – concerned about her SV, but it was a very strong routine.

Reinstadtler – FX – solid double tuck, looked like she was coming in short but held herself up well – strong positions on her leaps – 1.5 to layout with a bit too much of a dance out but good twisting shape – short on double pike with a step forward.

Udowitch – BB – ASU – check on aerial – repeats and very slow on combination on connection to back tuck, may give it but probably shouldn’t –  excellent kickover front, very solid – side aerial to a stuck full, kind of floppy but stuck.

Lewis – FX – Utah – secure double pike – front lay front full, takes it a little off to the side but had enough room not to go out – good straddle positions – strong double tuck as well – some chest positions but not bad. Good set.

Nebraska takes the lead with 98.475. Cal and USU at 98.200.

Lentz – BB – ASU – sharp loso series – switch to straddle 1/4, back leg low on the switch – loso is like her jam – full turn – tight on switch side with a bit of a lean – 1.5 with a large lunge forward.

Merrell – FX – Utah – super low on piked full in, not sure how she got that around, knees basically above her chest – 2.5 and over-flipped it, got no punch into the front tuck and sat it – working against a fall now – it shouldn’t matter but this rotation just got a little interesting – fine rudi.

Szafranski – BB – ASU – aerial to Korbut, slowish on connection and slightly off line on her Korbut like last time – very pretty side aerial – extremely short of 180 on switch, which was weird – rulfova looks like a struggle but she pulls the rest of the full twist around on her stomach – stuck gainer full.

Rowe – FX – Utah – secure double pike, chest downish – split leap 1.5, didn’t get all the way 1.5, like 1.25 – solid 2/1 to loso, nice loso, crossed legs in twisting – 1.5 to layout is hit.

Takara – Cal – UB – great high gienger and not much leg break – hop on dismount

Houchin just led off beam for Nebraska with 9.925.

Chrstopherson – BB – ASU – full turn, solid – kickover front to Korbut series, not too slow and very confident on each landing – beat jump to stag, no trouble – sticks 1.5. Really strong set.

Skinner – FX – L hop full is fine – a little stagger back on the double double this time but does stay in bounds – gets around her split leap 1.5 the full 1.5 – 1.5 with knees to a strong 2/1, stuck – good secure full in as well.

So it’s a 49.425 for Utah on floor. Will go well into the 197s with any kind of hit beam.

Laeng – BB – Neb – three series ending in loso is secure – wolf jump full is not with a large stagger and lean, stays on the beam – gainer piked full dismount with crossover stumble. Still got 9.800 for unexplained reasons though.

Schweihofer has a leg-up wobble on her loso series, but apparently that’s barely a deduction anymore if all the meets are a guide – another one on her switch 1/2 – they’re staying on but this is not nearly as crisp a performance as bars. small slide back on 2/1.

Nebraska finishes with Breen – confident and crsip one-armed bhs to loso – stag ring, high – split and sheep with a balance step back, sheep position not too bad, though, actually – sticks 1.5. Really good routine all things considered.

Didn’t see who this is on floor for Utah State, but that full in was a  million miles high.

Rotation 4:
Stover – BB – check on aerial – great switch and split – good split ring jump, hits that position – kickover front, right on – redoes her aerial to bhs to get the acro series, it’s a slow connection but she’ll get it – sticks gainer full.

ASU has some lowish totals so far, but another 195 is still absolutely doable on this floor rotation. One hit down, just a low double back with a lunge forward on the middle pass –

Merrell – BB – switch to split, fine – bhs bhs loso, no trouble – aerial with a check, second gymnast in a row with the same error – chest down 2/1 this time with a small hop on landing.

Belkoff – FX – chest pretty far down on double tuck but held the landing – 1.5 to front pike, takes it right to the edge, could be higher but has enough to get it around – back 1.5 to layout, not quite fully extended but she’ll get credit for landing control here.

Williams – FX – Nebraska – nice high double pike – front lay to rudi with a slide back but not extremely far – bounce on double tuck – good power on her passes, just needs a little more control –

Reinstadtler – BB – Utah – also lean correct her aerial, continues working into the bhs and we know it will get credit – leaps are a highlight for her – full turn – gainer full, lands on the border between two mats and sort of has a stumble step, traveled 88 miles on that gainer full.

Callis – FX – ASU – back 2.5 opener – leg crossed and a stumble step landing it, but high and definitely around – back 1.5 to layout, whips around that layout, not particularly high –

Skinner – BB – smallest lean on loso series – side aerial to sissone – switch to split, her switches are more 180 than her split jumps – holds her L turn – straddle jump to back tuck, no wobble – small hop forward on double tuck. That will probably get them out of the 9.825s. 9.950 is a name-score for that routine, though. If she had stuck, were you giving her a 10, even though she missed a split and leaned on a series?

Nebraska working against a Breen fall now on floor – Crouse – 1.5 to layout with a stride forward – a bit crooked on her switch side – rudi to loso, great height on the loso, crossed legs on the rudi, not too extreme.

Lee – BB – precise loso series, good extension, pretty – switch to straddle 1/4, hits those positions, doesn’t get super high but enough to hit – small lean correction on side aerial – short on 2/1 with a hop forward.

Chirstopherson – FX – somewhat short on double pike with a lunge forward – chest way down on double tuck with the same lunge –

Cal will want to drop a 9.725 from Draghi on beam but four good scores other than that. Need a strong total here to finish ahead of Utah State.

Rowe – BB – switch to straddle 1/4, tight on straddle 1/4 with a lean – another lean correction on her loso series – just a little right today, even on the full turn – sticks 1.5. Not her smoothest but a useful hit.

Lambert – FX – Nebraska – awesome DLO, crazy high, chest up on landing – front tuck through to double tuck, a little short with a hop forward – bounces back on double pike but stays in, slight struggles on last two passes but DLO was awesome.

Gallarzo hits beam for 9.800 giving Cal a hit rotation and moving ahead of Utah State.

Ginn gets through floor for ASU. They won’t quite get to 195 here but still a score they’ll take.

It’s 197.600 for Utah
to ASU’s 194.850. It’s not the 195s they had been getting, but it replaces a 193.2, so that’s perfectly acceptable.

Nebraska 197.175, Cal 196.400, Utah State 196.200, SEMO 190.325.

Watch out for Nebraska. Some home scoring at the end on floor there but I didn’t think it was too too extreme throughout, but those bars routines were legit.

104 thoughts on “Saturday Live Blog – February 25, 2017”

    1. He’s the worst…..Beyond obnoxious and always dumps a heavy load of “praise” on former elites.

  1. I’m much happier with UCLA’s floor lineup than I’ve been all year. This could easily be a season high for them if everyone hits.

  2. Is Daggett working for Pac 12 now, too? Ughh.

    I wish the PAC would hire more former female gymnasts to commentate. I really like Peszek and Borden. I’m tired of a lot of the gymnastics commentators who have been calling meets for thirty years.

    1. I live on the East Coast, too. Nearly all cable providers now offer it with an extended sports package. It’s kind of expensive, but worth it for the access to meets.

      Be careful with some of the “free” feed links. I used one last year and got a virus from it.

    1. I think it’s a combination of the fact that she clearly works hard (given how much she’s improved), she seems to be very good to her teammates, and she isn’t one of the bigger beneficiaries of the rampant over scoring. I find it a lot easier to root for people who aren’t being over scored, though I know it isn’t any athlete’s fault that she’s consistently over scored.

      1. Yep, the fact she’s a hard worker and also doesn’t seem to be a “me-first” type of person endears me to her. She’s not always looking for the camera or trying to get attention. She does her job, supports her teammates, and seems like a good person.

        Same reasons I was a fan of Brandie Jay, Lindsay Mable, Noel Couch, and Nansy Damianova. And also why I like AJ Jackson, Myia Hambrick, and Alex McMurtry now. They’ve had more success than Meraz, but I think they have the same qualities.

      2. And she’s a walk on and competes more routines than most of the people on scholarship right? She will most likely never get a perfect 10 or scholarship money, but she still works SO hard and has really become the backbone of the team

  3. Anyone know what happened to McGlone? I am assuming some type of injury, but do we know how bad?

  4. UCLA’s entire line of up bouncy, non-stuck full’s annoys me. If you aren’t even going to field anyone with a 10.0 start, (except Kramer who isn’t in the lineup today) you should have perfect fulls and they never do and the landings never look improved from week to week.

    1. 100% agree with you! Switch out the UCLA name and you’ve got yourself a 49.00, at best.

  5. In some ways I think it might be good for UCLA that Kyla hasn’t stuck her vault this meet and last meet. Maybe that will convince them that they really need to work in earnest on getting that Omelianchik competition ready rather than just having her do the Yurchenko full and banking on a stick.

      1. Eh, I don’t think she really does when she doesn’t stick. When she doesn’t stick, she tends to go around 9.85-9.875 which really isn’t high at all when you consider that UCLA is relying on her to be one of their high scorers on vault. If she sticks she will get 9.9+ and all will be fine and dandy, but she’s unlikely to go 9.9 without a stick, and UCLA really needs her to. Judging by the training videos, her Omelianchik had pretty decent form. If she could do it with good form, she definitely be able to go 9.9+ even without a stick.

  6. To be fair, it was more than rain. Where I live, we had 80 mph wind gusts, flooded streets, and a tree went straight through someone’s roof. Plus, a few people died from flooding and other issues of the storm.

    It wasn’t the apocalypse, but it was significant.

  7. The scoop neck of UCLA’s leo is a little low. I get they have mesh and and pieces of the blue, but I fear we could have a nip slip at some point. Plus, I doubt Kyla wants people to see what looks like sports tape wrapping her chest. UCLA never thinks about the athletes with boobs when designing leos. They are gorgeous if you have the right body type.

    1. And the suspender-back? Just no.

      I actually like most of UCLA’s leos, but agree that a bra-friendly design is preferred.

      1. @Anon (different one, not me :)) — no thanks, I’ll just voice my opinion right here. I just wish UCLA would think about their larger chested gymnasts. The leos are often incredible unflattering on them. They look fine in person in an arena, but on HD TV, not so much.

      2. I just get so annoyed that the Leo’s don’t fit most of them properly… there’s wedgies and butts out, and I find that UCLA is one of the biggest culprits. I get that they can’t buy new Leo’s for everyone, but week after week ohashi has one of the most ill fitting ones.

  8. I’m pretty sure I can see Kyla’s boob tape. Enough with these crazy leos, Ms. Val!

      1. I’ve seen some people on the gymternet insist the tape feels and works fine, but I find that hard to believe. Of course I’m not a gymnast or dancer, so who knows?

  9. Kocian needs to figure out how to keep those legs together and not take 4+ steps on her bars dismount….sorry, but that’s a 9.80.

    1. (Different anon) but, have you just started watching UCLA – that is standard procedure for them. overscored – this meet is a bit tighter but not a shock to me

      1. Nope, I’ve been watching. I’m trying to help the judges because they don’t seem to notice the out-of-control, multiple steps.

  10. Mossett mounting the beam is incredibly awkward! Sure, it’s pretty when she’s on her shoulders, but coming down is painfully weird.

      1. I agree, it’s lovely; however, pay closer attention as she comes down off her shoulders. It’s a bit messy.

  11. Peng Peng Lee looks like Kelly Parker (one of those mean girls in MIOBI) with her hair today 😀

  12. I think I like Tim emphasizing how awesome of a junior Katelyn Ohashi was… and I wonder on his assertion that if she was 16 in 2012 that she would have made the Olympic team!! (like probably would have challenged kyla right?

    1. I was confused too. I’m wondering she missed an element? I feel like it has to be a SV issue. That was a great routine.

  13. Why do they put Sonya Meraz in the floor lineup if it is to replace her at the last minute again…

  14. I don’t know how we hit 197.725! This did not feel like a 197.725 meet, at all!

    I guess I’ll take it.

    1. It shows at 6:00PST on the regular PAC 12 network and then later tonight on PAC 12 LA (and presumably later on the Mountain one too).

  15. So glad to see Howard’s beam raised to a 9.925. That’s more like it!!! (And, wtf, judges?!?)
    Thank you for that update, Spencer 🙂

    Also, is start value the reason we see so many inflated scores? Have the judges forgotten that 10 is the maximum start and they’re like “Ohashi’s beam is out of 10.2” Cause that would explain some things…

  16. I recall Hallie Mosset being great on bars before her sternum fracture last year. Does anyone know why she isn’t in the lineup?

  17. There has been lots of overscoring this year, but I have to wonder if UCLA is really going to come down to earth in the postseason. They can match anyone on bars and beam when they actually hit, but vault and floor are not on par with other top teams. I love Hallie’s routine, but otherwise, I wouldn’t even give UCLA a choreography bonus this year.

    1. Yeah, Hallie’s floor is my favorite, too. And guess who choreographed it? Hallie.
      Miss Val needs to step up her game. Or hire Hallie next year to stay on as choreographer.

      They must know that with nothing but hoppy Yfulls on vault, the best they can hope for at nationals is fourth. They just don’t train like they want to win. Maybe they don’t?

      If they want to make it to the top, and they sure have the talent on the team for it, they need to prevent injuries. Bless Madison Kocian for competing aa every week, with a top floor score, and the ONLY E pass on floor. It’d be nice to rest the girl, though, you know? I’d like to see her compete for a full four seasons.

      1. Apparently Kocian only legitimately trains once per week… So maybe thats how she is getting away with it

  18. Thanks for the above comments – I really think the scoring on vault and floor is a crime. The routines are stagie and boring. The days of olga korbut cute are long gone. Beef up the routines as the commentators keep saying or at least give fair scores. I have seen superior routines in other venues that get between 9.825 and 9.875. It is totally laughable. Just wait girls, the 4 judge scoring is just around the corner!!!MUHAAAA HAAA (oh, here’s my bitchey comment for the night – the low clevage leos are to keep the judges eyes up and not on the feet – great stratedgy!)

    1. The main crazy score was by far cipra. Macy and Hallie were great and same with Ohashi. Kocian may have been a touch overscored this time, but she usually looks around 9.9 because she doesnt really get form deductions just the slides on her passes (sometimes)

      1. I agree. I don’t think their floor scores were that overdone this week with the exception of Cipra, who obviously should have been lower. Kocian consistently scores 9.9-9.5 away. Ohashi consistently scores 9.85.-8.75 away. And Hallie’s score was deserved this week, I think. I do usually think their floor scoring is more over scored than it was today.

        I don’t specifically hate their choreography this year, except for Pua and Kyla, where they essentially just writhe around on the ground – like why?

        Their vaults are over scored and awful. And they need to learn how to stick and upgrade asap.

  19. How does Mossett not get a ten on floor? I want to murder the judge who gave her a 9.95. Especially after Kocian. Maddie did fine, but Mossett is a whole different level.

  20. Mossett is more than an gymnast, she is theater quality dancer. I have loved her for years and was so sad during her absences. I wish her the best. Love her attitude, style and talent. WIll truly miss her in the up coming years. I am a total Utah fan but she is in my books as one of the absolute best. She brings a smile to my face and heart (yes I’m old so I can get a bit schmaltzy and emotional) just as Torri Wilson did. Hallie, you are a 15 in my book.

    1. Me again – told you I’m old so I get forgetful – To Miss Sonja Meraz. You are amazing – a total rock. When they say that virtue is it’s on reward – you are the poster child. You have never received the credit for what you have given your team. You are supportive – encouraging and have great talent and the sweetest spirit. Have so enjoyed watching you. You will be an asset in what ever you choose to do with your life.

  21. I’ll be curious to see if Pua gets into the floor lineup in any more meets this year. She’s competed on floor 6 times this season, and she’s had significant problems 3 or 4 of those times. The remaining routines were decent, but none were really good. It’ll be interesting to see if they leave her in next week or put someone else in.

  22. These beam scores are confusing me: Houchin had 1 tiny check and another break/lean (9.925), while Williams was flawless (9.85).

    1. Been thinking the same myself – could be “alternative” judging!!!!LOL The question of the night is — drum roll please — can gymnastics judges be impeached!!! It’s the pain killers folks – broke my hip skiing on Wed. I think my brains leaked out the crack!! have pity on a pour soul such as I.

  23. “Gymnastics is the one sport that is art athletics”

    Figure skating is giving you some serious side eye right now, Val.

    1. Ha, every time I see the commercial I cringe when I hear that. Figure skating, synchronized swimming, and I’m sure there are others. I would probably add diving to this as well.

    1. I like the ombre “sunset” sleeve. I find them better than some of the other leos of this weekend. At least you don’t see boob tape.

    2. Maybe they’ve been told they can’t have new ones until they reach a certain score. “hanging out the carrot!”

      1. Haha, I was mainly concerned about how they were riding up during floor. I bet Rene ordered them. 😒

  24. Am I the only one freaking out about Taylor Houchin this year? 39.650. Powerful Y1.5, great extensions, toepoint, handstands and difficulty. She’s filling that Blankse void quite well.

  25. Spencer did you see Rachel Stypinski’s beam routine? After sticking her dismount she counted 1,2 on her hand at the judges before walking off the mat. #baller

  26. Did hey not have savvidou on floor this week? Wasn’t able to watch. If not, thank goodness. She is mistake after mistake and I just feel like her floor routine is boring and comes off conceited.

  27. Watching UCLA just now. They need to find a better company for their Leos. They are so god awful. You can actually see Ross’s boob tape job through the mesh. Good lord how can anyone think these are appropriate for this level of athletics?

    1. They need to realize that they have a wide variety of body types that can’t just be in a small or medium. Like I said above, ohashi is the worst in hers. It cuts her dangerously high in the front and back

      1. Ill-fitting leos are as rampant as ridiculously high scores. And nearly as evenly dispersed across teams.
        But, yeah, the backless designs make it worse on some.

  28. Couldn’t have been Gallarzo you saw hit beam for 9.8 – she didn’t compete it. After an 8.8 on bars, too, so I’m hoping she’s ok.

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