The Balance Beam Situation

Because gymnastics is a comedy, not a drama

Friday Live Blog – March 2, 2018

Friday, March 2 Scores Stream
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – [21] Ohio State @ [9] Kentucky LINK SEC+
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – New Hampshire @ [22] NC State LINK ACC+
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – [19] George Washington, Rutgers @ Towson LINK FREE
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – Temple, Penn, Yale @ Maryland LINK BTN+
7:30 ET/4:30 PT – [16] Nebraska, [17] Georgia, Illinois, Stanford (@ Augusta, GA) “LINK” FLO
8:00 ET/5:00 PT – Nastia Liukin Pink Pink Pink It’s Not Awkward Now Championship LINK NBC
8:00 ET/5:00 PT – [5] Florida @ [20] Missouri LINK SEC+
8:00 ET/5:00 PT – Arizona @ [10] Arkansas LINK
8:00 ET/5:00 PT – SEMO @ Iowa BTN+
8:30 ET/5:30 PT – North Carolina @ [6] Alabama LINK SEC+
9:00 ET/6:00 PT – Sacramento State @ [14] Boise State LINK FREE
9:00 ET/6:00 PT – [24] BYU @ Utah State FREE
10:00 ET/7:00 PT – Central Michigan @ [18] Cal LINK
10:00 ET/7:00 PT – Air Force @ UC Davis LINK FREE

Today, I’ll be paying primary attention to Elevate the Stage: Augusta, since I think that should be the most interesting (because what are these teams and where are they going?) and since not everyone will have access to it.

I always think I’m going to be able to keep an eye on the Nastia Cup at the same time as the NCAA meets, and then I never actually do, so just keep that in mind.

As we wait, Kentucky is getting started against Ohio State. Dukes with fairly solid control on her Y1/2 for 9.750. Huang has good shape on her Jaeger for Ohio State in a hit opener. She could have made Alabama’s lineup this season (which is where she was before transferring), at least at some points in the year.

Good amplitude from Danaea Davis on vault, she’s also improving the form, just a hop in place. She’s followed by a stick from Hyland on her full, though with less amplitude and a leg separation on landing, which can sometimes take the score down. Davis went 9.850, Hyland 9.800.

Ohio State hitting on bars through the first three routines. Mattern with the most composed of the three so far for 9.825, the first couple scores seemed a little tight, but that one did not, nor the 9.800 for Aepli. High if anything. Handstands look to be taking a few of them out of it.

Kentucky started the lineup with strong control on landings but just hopping and bouncing as we get to the end of the lineup to take down the scores.

The score range for Ohio State is CUCKOO on this bars rotation. They have no idea what they’re looking for yet. In most instances I think they got there in the end?

My favorite is the 9.900/9.700 spread for Aepli. I’m with Judge 9.700. But then Judge 9.700 is the one who gave Mattern 9.900, while the other went 9.750. It’s like they saw what each other did with Mattern’s routine, then said, “Oh, I’ve got to adjust,” and then they went opposite directions for Aepli’s routine.

Nice 1.5 for Korth, medium-hop back.

UNH avoids having to count a fall on bars following a miss in the second position.

After 1: Kentucky 49.050, Ohio State 48.950
After 1: UNH 49.025, NC State 48.950

Very good stick on a FTDT from Carlisle in the first spot for Kentucky on bars.

McClelland sticks a Y1/2 for OSU in the second spot on bars.

The toe point and height on the Jaeger is the highlight of Ella Warren’s routine. (Though I had that 9.800 and it went 9.875.)

Teams marching out for intros now at Augusta.

Poland is in on bars this week and worked crazy quickly, though it showed in a about a thousand form breaks in legs and missed handstands.

Stone brings OSU its second stuck Y1/2 of the rotation. Surprised that went 9.800. Seems inconsistent with the other vault scores today.

For the most part, though, Kentucky has refined those final cast handstands as we’ve moved through the season. Coca was going well until a large forward on her FTDT after landing chest-down. Separation monster strikes again.

Korth brought it in the final spot.

After 2: Kentucky 98.325, Ohio State 97.925

We’re still doing intros at Augusta, but we’re on to Georgia now, so that’s something. And now Cosette from your vaguely inappropriate middle school production of Les Mis is walking out to sing the national anthem.

Georgia on vault, Stanford on bars (AHHHH), Nebraska on beam, Illinois on floor.

Nebraska’s leos make me want a black and white cookie right now. It’s all I’m going to be able to think about.



Lawson – UB – Stanford – Toe Shap with legs to bail with legs, short handstands – crazy legs on giant full to double tuck with step forward, got through it.

Vega – VT – Georgia – bounce back on her full and another step back into salute. She’ll have hoped for better control on that since it’s not the biggest.

It’s a hit beam for Roby.

Oakley – VT – a little short on Yfull, some pike, with a bounce in place.

Navarro reallllly short on some handstands in there and then a large lunge forward on FTDT. Don’t expect a high number.

What are the scores? NO ONE KNOWS IT’S FUN LIKE A MYSTERY.

Dickson – VT – good dynamics, but also more of a bounce back than they wanted.

Rogers – UB – toe on – tkatchev, fall – here we go.

Johnson – VT – Georgia – solid, smaller hop back, a little pike.

Rogers hits the remainder of her bars.

Snead – VT – sits her 1.5. Dear dear dear. Pretty in the air, pretty potential, but basically a disaster for Georgia.

Schweihofer – BB – Nebraska – hits bhs lay-pike series, a little hesitation – switch to switch 1/2, pretty – excellent 2/1 and stuck. Good routine.

Flam – UB – toe 1/2 to jaeger, hit – toe on to bail, legs but got it – very short final hs – DLO 1/1 with lunge forward.

Solid front 2/1 from Hodan on floor.

Bryant – UB – toe on to tkatchev, strong – beautiful Pak as always – big arch on final cast handstand but saved it – step back on big DLO. Pulling back that handstand basically saved the meet for Stanford.

Breen – BB – bhs loso, hit, hop forward on 1.5. Another hit.

Price – UB – Toe SHap to clear hip to Church to bail to stalder shoot – perfect as typical – DLO, stuck. Fantastic.

Roe – FX – Illinois – double pike, very solid – double tuck, same, good control on these landings – very short of split on split leap 1/1 –

Hassel – BB – Nebraska – hits bhs loso series – aerial, smooth – split jump to sheep, verrrrry good form on split jump, the sheep legs are a little breaky – 1.5 with hop forward

Balthazor – FX – Illinois – double tuck, good chest up, a little slide – split leap 1.5, not bad on the splitting – split leap 1/1 to split jump 1/1, that’s her strength – 1.5 to front, solid –

Williams – BB – Nebraska – three series hit, some knees – cat leap to switch with a check – full turn – stuck dismount.

Georgia went 48.200 on vault. YIKES. Guess this isn’t going to be one of those good road scores.

Houchin – BB – Nebraska – bhs loso, clean -aerial, solid – switch to split, back leg on switch but split was good – full turn – cat leap to side aerial, nice leg form, small hesitation – 2/1, college stick.

Howell on floor had a couple steps back on her final pass, otherwise hit.

Stanford saved by Price on bars as usual for 48.900. They’ll take it. Now they just have to hit the others.

Nebraska 49.250 on beam. We’re still waiting on the final floor score for Illinois. Nebraska clearly the class of the first rotation.

After 1: Nebraska 49.250, Illinois 48.950, Stanford 48.900, Georgia 48.200

So…who wants Georgia geographically placed in their regional? It would probably be NC State if that happens. They’re both SE teams.

Kentucky looking on track to get a high 196 out of this (at least) heading to floor.

Illinois had a long score delay and then an exhibition, so we’re just getting into the touch for rotation 2. Why are we still doing exhibitions? It’s March.


Cole – BB – Stanford – hits loso series, a couple checks here a there, on a double stag and an aerial, fine, just a little tight – 2/1 with step back

Pedersen – UB – Georgia – 1/2 turn to piked jaeger, hit, a little leg break but solid – same with Pak, nice legs together, imprvoed – the handstands are a problem throughout. Double front with hop forward

Schild – UB – Georgia – Shap to bail, leg break on bail and short of vertical – cast handstands overall look like they’re getting there – DLO, a little hollow but fine, with a stagger forward on landing.

Tai – BB – Stanford – bhs loso bhs, not extended but secure – switch to straddle 3/4, same note – full turn – 1.5 with crossover step –

Vaculik – UB – Georgia – usual Gienger – crazy body shape on bail, somehow saved it but will get a leg break and vertical deduction, holds stick on FTDT.

Near-stick from Noonan on a full on vault, following Howell struggling on her landing.

Roby hits full-in on floor.

Snead – UB – Georgia – clear hip to tkatchev , hit – bail with small leg break, good vertical – best handstands so far – DLO with step, solid –

Looks like a hip-bend correction from Flam on beam but I didn’t see on what – quite short on punch front full dismount with lunge back

Hodan, hop back on full on vault, knees and piking as well.

Oakley – UB – toe shap to Pak, clean – verrrry good 1/2 turn on low bar – one short handstand – FTDT with hop back. Strong.

Price – BB – Aerial – bhs lay-pike, secure, some small body position deductions as typical, checkish on full turn – switch to split, split is good, switch has a back leg –  stuck double pike. Excellent dismount.

Dickson – Ub – nice Ray and bail – DLO, nearly stuck. Class of the rotation. Best control and amplitude.

Navarro – BB – nice toe on loso series, solid – check on aerial – small hesitation between switch and split – double tuck, also stuck. Just do dismounts, Stanford.

Breen – FX – double pike, secure – rudi, also solid – double tuck, controlled step back. Solid tumbling, some knees here and there, esp on dance.

Bryant – BB – check on loso series after coming in short but saved it – good leaps – check on front tuck –

It’s a 49.425 for Florida on bars, 9.950 for McMurtry.

Bower – UB – Missouri – comes in close on a Jaeger, shortish on most verticals but good stick on DLO. Still goes 9.850?

Skaggs – VT – Florida – clean full with some height but a pretty large bounce back, so I guess that 1.5 is not materializing.

Boren – VT – Florida – good 1.5, just a small hop back to put heels together – looks like she’s getting that landing –

Porter – Ub – Missouri – Jaeger, caught, to overshoot – shortish on a couple verticals at the end – cowboy double front with a step back.

McMurtry – VT – fantastic full and held the stick on the landing! Her good one. No problem with a 9.950 for that at all. 9.925. OK. Because now you’re decided to stop doing crack?

Huber – Ub – Missouri – nice toe poing on jaeger, hits overshoot – DLO with hop back.

Stanford went over 49 on beam and Georgia over 49 on bars, so it’s the start of a brand new society or something.

It’s a 196.775 for Kentucky.

After 2: Florida 98.675, Missouri 98.475

After 2: Nebraska 98.250, Stanford 98.200, Illinois 97.500, Georgia 97.400

Arizona got a much-needed 49.375 on bars to keep hope alive.

Snead – BB – Georgia – bhs los, bhs, hit – that switch is really destroying her beam routine, wish they could come up with something else – it’s a star jump – holds the front tuck – 2/1, stuck. Pretty fab otherwise.

Cole finishes floor with a rudi with a slide back, then front full front pike, also with a slide.

Dickson – BB – aerial to split jump, nice – full turn – bhs loso, secure, a little tight in form – switch to straddle 1/4 –

Houchin – VT – Nebraska – the 1.5 is back! Hop. Good.

H Hoffman – FX – Stanford – front tuck to rdui, rudi is pretty low but she pulls it around – switch ring to split leap full – double tuck, bounce back –

The first two beamers for Georgia got 9.925. Um what though?

Arnold – BB – Georgia – leg-up wobble on tuck jump 1/1 – aerial to bhs, pretty quick in combination – it’s just those leaps that get her now – will ger deducted for extension

Crouse – VT – 1.5 – hop forward, but typical good form

Oaskley – BB – Georgia – wolf turn, hit – aerial with a small check – bhs loso, good extension, holds it – split jump with a check, connected to nothing – redoes it into split ring and it’s solid – gainer full –

Flam hit double Arabian – some bouncing on the other passes.

Babalis – BB – Georgia – aerial to loso attempt – splits the beam and flops off both hilariously and painfully – they’ll have to count the Arnold score now – Yeoughers – switch to split, good – to back tuck with a check – kickover front pike, perfect – front layout full with hop.

Gowey falls on floor for florida.

Foberg – FX – Florida – full-in, excellent pass, well executed and controlled – front full to front tuck, crazy legs and also falls – they cannot punch on this floor? Counting a fall now. Lands her double tuck entirely out of bounds –

Bryant – FX – Stanford – came in very short on her DLO but lunged forward to save it super quick – front tuck throught o double pike, huge bounce back and OOB – switch side to popa – open double tuck, most controlled pass but she struggled with this one.

Arizona having a time on floor. Not helping but they have a buffer.

Price – FX – DLO, perfect, so huge – front tuck through to double tuck, stuck – double pike, controlled step back, chest up, exceptional routine.

Boren – FX – Florida – DLO, good a little hop – 1.5 to layout, very good, keeps straight shape – slide back on double tuck

After 3: Nebraska 147.400, Stanford 147.025, Illinois 146.675, Georgia 146.600

Baumann hits floor, finishing with a solid double pike, just a little bounce.

In other news, UNC just CANNOT with the bars, and it’s really starting to jeopardize regionals.

Florida ends up with 48.725 on floor, needing a massive beam now to make this an anywhere-near-usable score.


Arnold – FX – double pike, secure, chest down – double tuck, same but with a bounce back – switch side to switch 1/2, OK – 1.5 to front layout, hit

Cole – VT – Stanford – full with lunge forward – 9.750.

Navarro – VT – Stanford – pretty large bounce back on her full

Roby – UB – Nebraska – solid jaeger – pak, clean, good legs together – rushes handstand on 1/2 turn on low – good final cast – DLO, step back

Flam – VT – Stanford – Omelianchik – huge bound forward out of it this time

Babalis solid on floor

Schweihofer has nice arm flare on her piked jaeger.

Missouri also leads Florida by .075 going to the last event.

Dickson – FX – Georgia – double pike, a little slide back – 1.5 to layout, pretty clean with dance out – hit routine.

Bryant – VT – a little more bent knees on landing than usual, hop back, not her strongest –

Price – VT – DTY but with a step back this time.

Fitzgerald – VT – Stanford – full, very short with a lunge forward, but it’s a sixth vault.

Snead – FX – Georgia – whip to double tuck, nice, chest up – wolf jump full to popa – rudi to Shushunova, clean – crucnhed over double pike landing, but secure

39.650 for Price in the AA.

Vega – FX – Georgia – double pike, secure – 1.5 to front lay, a little arched in that lay with a dance out step – swithc tirng to split leap 1/1, fine – finishes double tuck, a little slide, but good.

Strong illusion turn from Hodan on beam. Holds the stick on gainer full.

Skaggs – BB – Florida – double wolf, hit, a little hesitant but usual wolf hesitant – switch to split, good – leg-up break on loso series, holds it – cat leap to side aerial layout full.

Over to Alabama, we’re mid-rotation 3

Ernst – BB – break on loso series with a bend-check to the side – switch to sheep is solid – aerial to split with a little arm wave in between – 2/1 with hop together.

FINAL: Nebraska 196.700, Stanford 195.925, Illinois 195.900, Georgia 195.825

The only team that will be super happy with this performance is Nebraska, the class of the competition, though Stanford and Illinois can work with those scores (unfortunately) as they’re stronger than the scores they’ll be replacing. That score will help Georgia’s RQS in the short term because they’re replacing a 194, but in reality it should be viewed as a throwaway score.

Boren – BB – Florida – kickover front, hit – bhs los series secure – switch to straddle – hits gainer full

Arizona getting saved by the scoring in this Arkansas meet. This will be a very usable number to help get them off the bubble.

Graber – BB – Alabama – full turn – bhs lay-pike, secure – switch to straddle 3/4 – kickover front to scale, works through to scale comfortably – 2/1 with crazy legs but stuck.

Gowey – BB – Florida – switch to split – bhs loso loso, large break with leg up as well, keeps it on – aerial to sissone, pretty – stuck gainer full

Klopfer – BB – ALabama – hitch kick to side aerial is secure with a little knees – hits loso series – side aerial to stuck full. A good hit for her.

Final: Arkansas 197.275, Arizona 196.125

Another big wobble for Baumann on her loso series but she also saves it. It’s the day of leg-up wobbles.

Lane – FX – UNC – double pike, secure – lovely loso out of second pass – switch side to popa, good extension – rudi, also secure, she’ll get some amplitude knocks, but controlled routine.

Winston – BB – Alabama – split jump to straddle 1/2, amazing – closeup of a woman’s shoulder, less amazing – aerial to bhs, quick enough for connection – full turn – double tuck with hop back. Full tenth bounce there but not much else to take –

McMurtry – BB – kickover front, good – bhs loso, secure, as usual not the most extended but secure – switch to shushunova hip circle, rushed the switch – 2/1, just a bounce in place. One of her good ones.

196.700 for Florida. Better than the road score that will be dropped, but not, you know, great. Missouri will win.

Harris – FX – Missouri – double pike, a little short with a lunge forward – switch side to popa, short of 180 on the popa – front lay to front full, some bent knees in there – double tuck, controlled step back. 9.900. Fun fact: I had 9.750.

Guerrero – BB – Alabama – bhs loso loso, almost perfect, just a little lean but covered it – switch to straddle jump, no trouble – side aerial, quite strong – 1.5, stuck. Another strong one from Guerrero.

FINAL: Missouri 196.925, Florida 196.700

Hislop – FX – UNC – front lay to rudi, a little bouncy, lovely in the air as always – excellent 180s in split leaps and jumps – bounce back on her huge double tuck. Just two landing control issues, nothing built in.

Alabama en route to a season high by many many tenths.

Hedelund – BB – UNC – fall on loso series – which is not respectful of the stylish waist-wrap – 1.5 hop forward.

Guerra – FX – double tuck, chest up – solid straddle positions – “eventually” they’re going to make that a DLO, apparently. Um, it is eventually. 1.5 to layout, better than in the past, nice layout position – double pike, good control, her best floor of the season.

Dewhurst – BB – bhs loso, nice toe point, check – switch to straddle 1/4, a couple small corrections here – aerial and falls. Falls in first two routines.

UNC you will be the death of me.

Armbrecht – FX – double pike small slide. Commentator also upgraded her first pass. Again, when it that going to happen, because unless it’s literally tomorrow? 1.5 to front layout, flattish layout – rudi to double stag.

Gordon – BB – aerial to bhs, a little hesitation in between – split jump to back tuck – good individual skill execution – switch to stag ring, not the most extended – gainer pike. It’s a hit.

Mahoney – FX – Double pike, slide back – she “got famous” for winning her division of JO nationals on floor – front full to layout, hop forward, a little off line – solid leaps – double tuck, comes in short with a bounce forward

Allen – BB – split 1/2 is hit, not quite extended – bhs loso, secure – hitch kick to side aerial, also controlled – gainer full, hop.

Desch – FX – double arabian…really stiff landing but she looks fine, continuing the routine, just gave up a lunge forward – switch ring to split 1/1, nice 180 on split full – double tuck, just a hair forward. 9.850. Nothing matters.

Hislop – BB – aerial to back tuck, kinnnnd of keeps it going with an arm wave in between – switch to sissone, good – switch to split – full turn – lovely punch rudi dismount, small slide

Graber – FX – really strong full in, lands staggered but chest up – wolf jump 1.5 – front lay to front full with some legs – crazy legs on her rudi to a stag jump –

Lane – BB – mount to loso loso with a small check but also too pretty to exist – switch side, good – full turn, small lean – nice correction on side aerial to turn it into a side aerial to side position, it’s own skill. 1.5, stuck.

Guerrero – FX – double pike, solid – switch side and popa, well 180ed – 1,5 to front full with a slide out – rudi, low with another little slide.

FINAL: Alabama 197.575, UNC 194.875


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