The Balance Beam Situation

Because gymnastics is a comedy, not a drama

Saturday Live Blog – February 2, 2019

Saturday, February 2 Scores Stream
12:00 ET/9:00 PT – Iowa @ [15] Ohio State LINK BTN+
12:00 ET/9:00 PT – Bridgeport, So Connecticut, Springfield @ Yale ESPN+
1:00 ET/10:00 PT – Ithaca, Rhode Island @ Brockport FREE
2:30 ET/11:30 PT – [3] UCLA @ [20] Oregon State LINK P12N
3:00 ET/12:00 PT – Maryland @ Rutgers LINK
5:00 ET/2:00 PT – [22] Penn State @ Illinois LINK BTN+
5:00 ET/2:00 PT – Michigan State @ [21] Minnesota LINK BTN+
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – [7] Denver, Iowa St @ West Virginia LINK FREE
8:00 ET/5:00 PT – [14] BYU, [19] Arizona State @ [18] Cal LINK FREE

Remember last night, you guys? I know. Me too. I’m barely over it. And how Oklahoma got 49.825 on floor for being like…fine? The best. And that was only one day. UCLA hasn’t even competed yet.

That’s about to change.

No Ohashi on floor today for UCLA. Poston allegedly back in on vault instead of Frazier.

I hope we get to a point in college gymnastics coverage where our pre-meet storylines can be a little more analytical or deep than “what a great personality this freshman has.”

Rotation 1 – Oregon State on vault, UCLA on bars

Oregon State Vault
1: Mack – full, medium-sized bounce back, solid direction, some feet, a useful score addition I think. 9.750
2: Force – full, a bit larger bounce back on hers and has to pike down a bit more, but another option. 9.775. A bit of scoring the lineup order
3: L Dagen – solid full for her, one smaller step back, other foot planted, pretty good body position and distance, just a little chest down. 9.800
4: M Dagen – full, nearly able to stick, just a smalllll hop forward, chest too far down but good shape in the air. 9.875. Uh…Carol I didn’t see you there?
5: Yanish – full, best of the bunch in the power and distance and dynamics, not too large on the hop back. 9.875
6: Jacobsen – Tsuk 1/1, strong showing for her, just a bit of a bounce in place, still pike in the air but not as extreme as it has been sometimes. Nice one. 9.950 MY GOD YOU GUYS WHAT IS HAPPENING. I mean, I would have been fine with 9.850, but…

1: Frazier – a bit short first hs – Shap to Pal, nice and high – toe shap, legs together – DLO, stuck. Nice. A few hip angle handstands early on, but nothing much there. Solid start. 9.875 (not 9.9 as the broadcast reported.)
2: Hano – very short first hs and then falls on her Ray. Well, she got in the lineup? Gets her Ray to overshoot on second attempt, better final hs on high – quite late giant full into double tuck, step back. Still need to figure out this spot. 9.200 is pretty high.
3: A Glenn – godo first hs – 1/2 turn to jaeger, clean – little bit of legs on pak but not much, crisp handstand positions, last one a little late – giant full into double tuck, some loose back and a little hesitation in giant full but saves – with a small adjustment. 9.850
4: Flatley – short first hs – higgins to jaeger, a little late finish on the higgins and some elbows catching jaeger – bail super clean, great vertical, strong final hs, that’s improving – DLO, nice position in the air and stuck, a little legs apart landing. Some clear improvements there. 9.950. Dear.
5: Kocian – Stalder Shap to pak, her normal – good finish position on 1/2 turn on low – one borderline hs – FTDT with a smalllll slide adjustment on landing. 9.975. Cool, didn’t she…not stick though? Close? Maybe?
6: Ross –  Shap to bail, perfect – toe shoot, very high, hitting handstands – DLO, stuck. Better than Kocian, so let’s see. 10.000. Not as much of a problem with that one, but the overscores in this rotation meant they had to give it.

After 1: UCLA 49.650, Oregon State 49.275


I mean, fine rotations for both. Like to see some of those new vaults for Oregon State at the beginning because they look like they can be a step up over previous scores. Both rotations scoring insanely high. UCLA was good on bars, nice and clean and lovely on the last two, which apparently means automatic 49.6 now.

Rotation 2 – Oregon State on bars, UCLA on vault

Oregon State Bars
1: Yamaoka – toe on to toe shap, small leg break – short first hs on high – bail, a bit short of vertical, some hs to take – giant full to double tuck, short with a hop. 9.700
2: Jacobsen – tkatchev to overshoot, hit – some feet, pretty good – first hs position was short – double front, stuck, nice finish there – she’s having a good day. 9.875
3: Lowery – short first hs – toe on to Toe Shap, some legs – to Pak, nice and high, some legs breaks in both – DLO, good hold on that stick. 9.900.
4: MCP – some hip angle on first hs – hits jaeger this week with some elbows – bail, clean – a couple vertical issues – DLO, perfect DLO and stick. 9.875
5: Briscoe – 1/2 turn into jaeger, lovely toes – hit hs – bail, a little bit of leg break- solid hs vertical positions – overdoes her DLO a hair, hop back.
6: Greene – clear hip to tkatchev, nice and high but some legs – bail, collapses in body position on her bail and comes off, potentially hurt, like she caught her thumb Sam says – yeah no reason for her to continue because they have five hits before that.

UCLA Vault
1: Tratz – “not on bars today” I mean yeah. Better control landing her full this week, just a small slide back, a little chest position. 9.825
2: Dennis – full – gigantic and nearly stuck – a little adjustment on landing but it was just a small slide – great height of course, good layout position. 9.925. HI GUYS SHE DIDN’T STICK THO
3: Wright – Y1.5 – not as strong as the previous weeks, which you could see from the start with more knee bend, large lunge forward on landing. 9.750
4: Hano – 1.5 – her best of the season, one of her best ever, stuck that one, just some knees to take there, slides heels together but that’s more of a stick than Dennis’s. 9.950.
5: Ross – let’s see what happens here – 1.5, landed this time, but a large lunge forward this time, similar to Wright’s, though will score higher because of body position in the air. 9.850. So, hey guys, that was more than a .1 lunge.
6: Poston – hs front pike 1/2 – uncontrolled landing with two steps back, good position in the air, just some feet, but not there yet with those landings in her competition showings. 9.725

After 2: UCLA 98.950, Oregon State 98.500

UCLA OK on vault, didn’t get the landings from Poston, Ross, or Wright that they needed, but Hano did one of her best ever. The 9.950s that have been given on vault are why there is outrage over Natalie Wojcik’s scores, because her vaults are better than that and not getting 10s. Oregon State got through with five stronger bars routines than they’ve had in a few recent meets to get on pace for a season high by a million tenths.

Kind of interested in how Lena Greene got 8.050 if she stopped her routine after like 4 skills.

Rotation 3 – Oregon State on beam, UCLA on floor

Oregon State Beam
1: Lowery – bhs loso series with a little “dog peeing on fire hydrant” leg-up wobble, nice save – switch to straddle 1/4, hit – cat leap to side aerial, some feet but super secure – front full dismount, stuck. Nice second 1/2 there. 9.800
2: M Dagen – bhs loso series, super smooth – switch to switch 1/2 to beat, a little short in positions but secure – nice dance out of it – side aerial to full, stuck, probably her best beam of the season. 9.925. Beam is getting ready to give UCLA an entire lineup of 10s.
3: Davis – into the lineup this week – aerial with a large leg-up wobble, had opportunity to Risa it in scale but did not – bhs loso more secure, some feet – switch to straddle 1/4 – gainer front full off the end, stuck. Got it together as it went. 9.600
4: Gill – nice to see her back out there – split jump to double stag, some little wobbles on both, a little uncertain in that combination – aerial to bhs, more solid – switch 1/2 to beat, finding her way as the routine goes – gainer full, a bit short with a hop. Getting there. 9.850.
5: L Dagen – switch to switch side with an arm wave correction – aerial to split, smoothly done – bhs loso, solid, just a little arm lean but not even a check – gainer pike, stuck. Good one. 9.875
6: Lazaro – bhs loso series, pretty as always, good toes – switch to straddle 3/4, a little arm lean, but great straddle position – check on full turn – side aerial to full, stuck. Very pretty routine. 9.900

UCLA Floor
1: Kramer – front 2/1 to front pike, a little short this week with a step back – 1.5 to layout with a step, keeps it in bounds well, but a little less clean in that layout position than usual. Excellent straddle positions today – rudi to stretch jump is nice. Not her best landings today but fine. 9.825
2: Ross – whip to double tuck, her best chest position on landing that pass, actually slid back this time – 1.5 to layout, overcooked that 1.5 and had to shoot horizontal on that layout to get it – double pike, nice and secure. 9.900. One judge went 9.950, which is fun
3: Tratz – full-in, not one of her good ones this week with a step OOB – 1.5 to front full, controls the step, just a bit of knees – switch ring to split leap full is nice – double tuck, solidly done. 9.750
4: Dennis – nails the pike full in this week, strong – front full to front layout, nice and straight in that layout, sort of sells the landing? – straight jump fulls works as a third element out of her dance series because it’s actually also real and around and not an afterthought – double tuck, perfect, stuck. Strong. 9.925
5: Frazier  – full in, camera angle way too close to determine landings, but it looked controlled – whip through to double tuck, bounce back on this one – double pike, also bounces back, a bit larger on the bounces on those last two passes, which will take down the sco….ahahahaha. 9.825.
6: Hano – DLO, pretty nice control, good chest up – front full to 1/2 to running fish – I’m with Val on this little fish worm swim – double pike, does well to hold the control despite looking a little short coming in. 9.900

After 3: UCLA 148.325, OSU 147.850

UCLA through floor with a solid score, 49.375. Not its strongest showing in the landings (besides Dennis) with a few too many bounces and steps and not having the Ohashi 9.975 machine also showed in the scores, but fine. Oregon State’s beam was the team’s strongest rotation of the meet so far, some checks but really pretty work overall.

So UCLA needs 49.675 on beam to get a 198. Judges view it as a dare? OSU should get 197 here with a normal floor.

Rotation 4 – Oregon State on floor, UCLA on beam

Oregon State Floor
1: Jacobsen – double pike, keeps front foot down – 1.5 to layout, not the highest pass, but secure – split leap 1/1 to split jump 1/1, hitting her 180s, close enough in terms of being around – rudi, some legs, also controlled pass. Good day. 9.875
2: Mack – front lay to rudi, nice height and position, slide back – good amplitude in those dance elements as well – double pike, controlled, a little chest forward – front lay to front full, a bit deep in that landing with a dance out, good hit though. 9.800
3: M Dagen – double tuck, solid but a slide back – switch 1/2 to popa, a but short of switch 1/2 position – double pike, bounce back, larger this time, front lay to front full with step out, not her most controlled landings but will be a solid number. 9.925 THIS MEET YOU GUYS.
4: Force – double pike, very clean, nice toes and controlled – switch side to popa, completed well – front layout front full with an uncontrolled lunge out, near the line but stays in – double tuck, a little chest forward but doesn’t show too much on the landing. 9.875
5: Lowery – front 2/1, just does get it around and controls the step forward out of it – 1.5 to layout, a little bit of knees but once again solid – nice lift in straddle – rudi very strong, not ragged like most final rudis we see, actual height and straight position. 9.950
6: Yanish – DLO, huge, but a bounce back this time – front full to front layout, a little horizontal but fine, well completed – double tuck, also chest up with a bounce back, like on the DLO. 9.975. Remember that time she bounced back out of 2 of her passes, and like an idiot, I though she would score 9.850? Fun fun.

1: Nguyen – aerial to loso series with a lean in between so borderline connection there, but you know this meet – switch to split to beat, hit – split jump 1/2 from side, hit also – front layout full off the end, stuck. Good ending. Some rhythm issues. 9.875
2: Kocian – bhs loso series, smooth and solid – aerial to split, a little slow in combo, some knees in aerial – switch to split, well done – long pause before dismount, 2/1 with .1 hop back. 9.825
3: Flatley – aerial to loso, good speed in that combo actually – side aerial with a check correction and fake 1/4 turn – lovely L turn – switch to split, lovely – bhs 1.5 with a little slide back. 9.875
4: Dennis – aerial to loso combination of her own, that was sort of in between the other two in terms of speed – switch to split, good – 2/1, stuck. One of her strong ones. 9.975. OK SO HERE WE ARE.
5: Ross – bhs loso, super strong, smooth – aerial to sissone, no trouble – full turn and a lovely dance out instead of pausing – switch to split with a balance check – side aerial to full, not stuck with a lean arm wavy step. 9.900
6: Ohashi – bhs bhs layout, smalllll little lean on it but mostly solid, a bigger leg form issue this time – switch to split, very strong – aerial to bhs loso full dismount, stuck. Dismount quite crisp as always. 9.950. Why not.

FINAL: UCLA 197.900, Oregon State 197.450

The judging is wildly out of control. This isn’t even a try anymore. UCLA still looking on track. Not the best day, but Dennis was a real highlight. Strong performance from her on all three events. Thought hers was the best floor routine of the day from either team. Oregon State definitely made progress, more solid on bars and beam and got some new vaults in there, but will also know the final score is a wild fiction.



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