The Balance Beam Situation

Because gymnastics is a comedy, not a drama

Monday Live Blog – January 16, 2023

Monday, January 16SCORESSTREAM
2:00pm ET/
11:00am PT
[10] Ohio State, Rutgers, Fisk @ [17] GeorgiaLINKSEC+
3:00pm ET/
12:00pm PT
[1] Oklahoma @ [13] LSULINKESPN2
4:00pm ET/
1:00pm PT
San Jose State @ Air ForceFREE

Georgia has perhaps exceeded expectations for its start, already notching a 196.4 this weekend and not ranking last in the SEC after the first two weeks. I’m not saying the expectations were high, but Georgia is clearing the bar so far. But can Georgia beat an Ohio State team that already went 196.7? Or will that shift in hierarchy be solidified?

And then we get to Oklahoma’s visit to a wounded LSU team that has been sub 197 in both of its first two meets and lost Kiya Johnson to an Achilles on Friday. LSU won’t really expect to beat this Oklahoma team right now, one that will look right at Michigan’s 198.125 as the goal here, but they’ll be aiming for a rebound performance that they can rally around and point to in saying that they’re still a competitive team even without a top-2 all-arounder. 

Rotation 1

Pritchard – UB – OSU – toe on to gienger to overshoot, keeps legs together on gienger – giant full, late into double tuck, holds landing.

De Jong – VT – Georgia – good amplitude on yfull, medium hop back, some direction and piked hip position

Large break at the hips for Battavio on beam for Rutgers. Muhammad finishing up on floor leading off for Fisk, double tuck, finds the landing, some leg separation and chest position.

Harris – UB – OSU – Ray, solid turnover – arch in cast hs – toe on to bail, small leg break – short cast hs on high – giant full, good finish position into a clean and stuck double tuck.

No scores……?

King – VT – UGA – enormous bounce back on yfull landing, good height

Another break at the hips for Rutgers on beam from Pagliaro. McDonald on FX for Fisk – solid double tuck landing to finish.

Edwards finishes bars for OSU with a slide back on her double tuck.

Elsadek – VT – Georgia – shorter landing on yfull, chest forward and hop ahead

Vetter – OSU – giant full to a high tkatchev, some feet – solid cast hs – bail, legs together – FTDT, chest down and a bounce forward

Cashman hits her yfull for Georgia with a medium slide back.

Riccardi – UB – OSU – nice toes in first hs – toe on to Ray, a blit close – pak is pretty – 1/2 turn on low, perhaps a little late – short cast hs – stalder to double tuck, nice finish.

Coleman on floor for Fisk gets her switch side and straddle up to 180 – double tuck, landed, chest down and a slide.

Howard – VT – Georgia – nice position on yfull, small step back.
Miller – UB – OSU – toe on to maloney, legs together into bail, solid – borderline final hs – DLO, stuck. Nice.

Ortiz has a leg-up to horizontal on her bhs bhs loso series for Rutgers – gainer full dismount, slide back.

Hawthorne – VT – Georgia – yfull today and some of her best full control, small hop back

One thing I love is that we have no idea what anything has scored.

Richmon on floor for Fisk, solid 1.5 to layout – split leap full to wolf full, pulls it around, will get some position deductions there – double tuck, hit

Joyner – BB – Rutgers – bhs loso series, right on – switch to switch 1/2, good split there, some foot flexing – 2/1, some leg separation, hop back.

Mora – FX – Fisk – front lay to front full to front tuck, around, some deductions for leg separation and height – split jump full to wolf jump full, pulls it around – some lack of control – solid switch ring work – double pike, chest down, lunge, a git.

We’re into exhibitions on the remaining events, with one more Fisk floor routine and no scores for anyone.

Price – FX – Fisk – double pike, controls step back, some chest position – front lay to front full, slide forward – switch 1/2 to wolf full to split jump full, nice, around, showing positions – 2.5, mostly controls the step. Good one.

We’re starting to get scores. Ohio State 49.225 on bars. Georgia’s score is still listed as 39.100 so that’s fun. But probably not.

Big 48.350 for Fisk on floor, a best for them on any event and less than 2 tenths behind Rutgers’ beam. Allegedly. We’ll see if these scores are anything.

Now we have have Fisk on 48.675 on floor, which is the same as Georgia’s 48.675 on vault. Rutgers on 48.525 on beam (!!!)

A fun look at Corinne’s floor from back in the day. Kathy’s like, “where ISSSSS the toe point.”

After 1:
Ohio State – 49.225
Georgia – 48.675
Fisk – 48.675
Rutgers – 48.525

Rotation 2

Cashman – UB – Georgia – tkatchev, hit – toe on, arch, pulled it back to bail, small leg separation – DLO, nearly sticks, leans forward, ends up stepping. 9.700

Oliveros on beam for OSU – solid aerial to bhs series – short of split position on switch 1/2 – side aerial, hit – gainer pike, some feet, holds onto the stick with a little lean. 9.775

Zanella with solid height on a whip 2/1 on floor, little rebound – switch ring to ring 1/2 –

Angeny – UB – Georgia – misses her hand on her overshoot in combination but does well to continue her routine rhythm – DLO, small hop, good form. 9.475

Hankins – BB – OSU – bhs loso, lean, chest forward – kickover, small chest – switch to split jump 1/4, good split positions – 2/1, dismount, some legs, bounce back. 9.725

Pagliaro with a very comfortable double pike on floor for Rutgers, good amplitude and control – front lay to front full, slide forward –

Howard on bars for Georgia catches close on her piked tkatchev. 9.750

Harris – BB – OSU – opens with a nice Valdez – switch to straddle 1/4, secure – hits full turn – aerail, keeps moving into back tuck, solid – strong 2/1 dismount.

JaFree Scott has a clean maloney to pak on bars, sticks DLO. That’s better. 9.850

Reed-Hammon steps Fisk up to the yfulls on vault, bounce back.

Nice high Ray on bars from Finnegan – toe on to pak, leg break – 1/2 turn on low, some soft back – FTDT, slightly deep, slides forward. 9.800

De Jong – UB – Georgia – good first hs on low – toe on to maloney to bail, solid combination – DLO, small hop back.

Price nearly sticks her yfull on vault for Fisk, small step.

Pritchard – BB – OSU – hitch kick to side aerial, solid, just a bit of knees – full turn, nice – bhs loso series, secure – swtich,s hort back leg into straddle 1/4 with a check – 1.5 dismount, hop forward.

Georgia got 9.925 from De Jong on bars to get up to 49.025 there.

Joyner – FX – Rutgers – is her music a test of the emergency alert system? – double pike, chest up, good, small rebound – nice switch full, clear position – front full to front lay, low on the layout – switch side to popa is very good – back 1.5 to front lay, controls the step.

Hodges on beam for Ohio State has a small check on her straddle 3/4 out of a switch split jump. Holds the stick on 1.5 dismount with a lean.

9.900 for Hodges to get them up to 98.275.

Rutgers sitting on 48.825 on floor with Joyner’s 9.825. Leese with a secure landing on her front tuck through to double back to finish the rotation on floor.

After 2:
Ohio State 98.275
Georgia 97.700
Rutgers 97.350
Fisk 96.350

Meanwhile, LSU and Oklahoma to get started shortly. LSU will have Brock come in for Johnson on vault and floor, Tatum on bars, and Ballard and Arenas on beam (for Johnson and Wilson).

LSU-Oklahoma Rotation 1

Arenas – VT – LSU – solid distance on her yfull, a bit larger bounce back than her usual. 9.775

Sievers – UB – OU – maloney to pak, nice form – solid cast hs on high – FTDT, pinged a little – step forward. 9.850

Shchennikova – VT – LSU – still slightly deep on her Y1.5 but pulls it out, just a little down with a slide back. 9.875

Torrez – UB – maloney to pak, good height, small leg breaks – maybe rushes that final hs – DLO, some adjustment steps. 9.850

Brock – VT – LSU – she brings out her y1.5, lands a bit short, step back – solid option with her form in the air. 9.800

Fletcher – UB – OU – piked jaeger, good – toe on to pak, good legs – hits vertical on 1/2 turn on low – a bit short on some casts hs – FTDT, good stick. 9.850

KJ Johnson – VT – LSU – nice position and distance on her yfull, step back. 9.875 even though a step has to be .1

Smith – UB – OU – Ray, hit – solid cast hs – toe on to pak, good height – DLO, whips in a pike, finds the stick well. 9.950 is a lotttt.

Finnegan – VT – LSU – Omelianchik, nice distance, one pace forward. 9.850

Bowers – UB – OU – good first hs – blind to jaeger, a bit close today – good hs – pak, legs right together – 1/2 turn on low, good position – borderline final cast hs – FTDT, stuck with a little leg hesitation but no movement. 9.900

Bryant – VT – LSU – handspring pike 1/2, big as usual, bounce back

Davis – UB – OU – higgins to piked jaeger, excellent – good hs – pak, legs together – 1/2 turn on low is strong – yes to final cast hs – higgins to front giant to double front 1/2 out, low chest today with a crossover step. 9.850

After 1:
Oklahoma 49.400
LSU 49.325

It’s a solid score on bars. I don’t think Oklahoma will be that happy with some of the cast handstand positions early in the lineup, not quite their usual precision, and some of the dismount steps, but they will have the lead. LSU will take 49.325 for a non-Johnson vault lineup. Brock looks like a viable addition.

Meanwhile, Georgia is hitting beam, but not with scores that will close the gap on Ohio State. But 196 is still in the picture if they have a good big floor. Edwards on floor for Ohio State now with great open on her double pike.

De Jong finishes beam for Georgia with 9.800, taking them to 49.075 there and a 146.775 after 3, so they’ll be close to a point behind Ohio State with one left.

Rotation 2

Stern – VT – OU – good Y1.5 – medium hop forward and some knees. 9.850

Jeffrey – UB – LSU – good frist hs – maloney to pak, small leg break – solid 1/2 turn on low – some back position on straight leg cast – FTDT, bounce back. 9.800

Torrez – VT – OU – finds a good stick on her Y1.5 – some things to take like distance, amplitude, maybe some legs, but nice. 9.875. Glad they kept it together on that score despite seeing STUCK YURCHENKO 1.5.

Arenas – UB – LSU – good first hs – nice height on tkatchev, into pak, leg break – solid 1/2 turn position on low – shortish final cast hs – DLO, leg break, small hop back. 9.875

Sievers – VT – OU – another hit Y1.5 – small step forward but a clear step – again not the most distance. 9.900. That one feels high becasue that was a .1 step and also the distance.

Tatum – UB – LSU – short first hs – Ray to pak, hit, leg break on pak – 1/2 turn on low is hit – short hs on high – FTDT, small step. We’ll see what they do with the handstands because they were pretty short. 9.875. So apparently they didn’t care and handstands aren’t real.

Bowers – VT – OU – beautiful in the air on her Y1.5, more distance than the last two, bounce forward. 9.875

Finnegan – UB – LSU – hecht mount – good first hs – piked deltchev is nice – solid hs – toe on to bail, good vertical, some loose back – short cast hs on high – double arabian, nearly finds stick, step salute. 9.925

Levasseur – VT – OU – beautiful y1.5 in the air, good distance, nearly has the stick but steps out of it into salute. 9.925

Shchennikova – UB – LSU – short first hs – Ray, close catch, works into pretty pak – good hs on high bar – DLO, usual piking, chest down step salute. 9.875

Davis – VT – OU – lands short on her Y1.5 with a step back and some leg break on the table, so that will be the drop score. It is at 9.800 but that’s very high for that vault.

Bryant – UB – LSU – blind to jaeger, hit – big arches hs on high but puills it back – bail, hit, slight hip angle – good cast hs on high – blind to double front 1/2 out, stuck. Nice except that handstand. 9.900

So LSU 49.450 on bars, Oklahoma 49.425 on vault. Scoring at this point is excessive crazy pills.

Sam asks KJ who has gotten a quarter tenth better today. She’s like, literally nobody.

After 2:
Oklahoma 98.825
LSU 98.775

I don’t think we got an answer about LSU’s bars lineup because the scoring was in fancy land, but we did see six hits. There’s room for someone else to break into that group though. Oklahoma needed a few more landings on vault, but Levasseur’s was quite nice. LSU will be pleased with how close this is so far. Oklahoma hasn’t done enough to pull away in a road context.

Rotation 3

Rivers – BB – LSU – bhs loso is secure – switch 1/2, small check – swtich to straddle 1/4, good straddle position, some back leg in switch – 2/1 dismount, chest forward, lunge forward and to the side. 9.800

Johnson – FX – OU – front lay to rudi, some legs, controls step – switch 1/2 to wolf full, nice – double tuck, chest up, controls step. 9.875

Ballard – BB – LSU – bhs loso, hit, knees on bhs – sissone, short back leg into swtich 1/2, short but not bad – kickover, small lean – 1.5 dismount, short, step back. We’ll see what they do. Like Tatum’s bars, there’s a lot of room to nickle and dime that down to 9.7s, but will they? No. 9.825

Sievers – FX – OU – FTDT, small slide back – front tuck through to double tuck, chest forward and a step – switch side to popa, hit. 9.875. I’d have more off with that second pass chest position and step forward.

KJ Johnson – BB – LSU – reverse planche mount – switch to straddle 1/4, short back leg on switch, good straddle – bhs loso, check – side aerial, shoulder dip before sissone so possible connection break – bhs 1.5 dismount, hop forward. 9.750

Fletcher – FX – OU – 3/1, mostly around, hops it around with a jump to the side – front lay to front full, crossover step, shows some lack of control – switch 1/2 to popa – 2.5 final pass is well controlled, good twisting position. 9.850

Arenas – BB – LSU – swtich to split, better switch than some of the earlier in the lineup – bhs loso, some knees in bhs, secure landing – kickover, good save, was deep but didn’t give up too much of a check – full turn, hit – switch 1/2, hit – 1.5 dismount, finds the stick, thought she would be short because she didn’t get much off the beam but found the landing. She seems like she has secured a spot on beam. 9.875

Smith – FX – OU – double tuck, bounce back, keeps it in bounds – 1.5 to front lay, good layout – oh look the phone is ringing – switch side to wolf full, lovely positions – double pike, chest forward, little step. Again kind of steppy, as Oklahoma has been all day today. But also 9.925 so there’s that.

Bryant – BB – LSU – aerial, connects to bhs, lovely aerial position – switch to straddle 1/4 is hit – standing front tuck, great – good split jump – punch rudi dismount, little slide. Great one. 9.950

Torrez – FX – OU – DLO, controls her landing to present, nice legs together – split leap full to popa, good positions – front tuck through to double tuck, huge bounce back and OOB. 9.750

Finnegan – BB – LSU – candle 1/2 mount – bhs loso loso, right on – switch to split jump, huge and unexpected break, bend over to the side and a lean – aerial, hit – gainer full, chest forward, step. 9.775

Bowers – FX – OU – double pike, great form, looks like she controlled that front foot – switch, excellent – front 2/1 to front tuck, finds the secure landing – switch 1/2 to wolf full is perfect. 9.925

So Oklahoma will expand its lead with a 49.450 on floor to LSU’s 49.225 on beam. But LSU staying close enough to force Oklahoma to be Oklahoma on beam.

After 3:
Oklahoma 148.275
LSU 148.000

That early beam lineup for LSU is going to continue being a question because they have a couple people in there who are closer to the 9.7s than the 9.9s just with built-in stuff.

Rotation 4

Dunn – BB – OU – bhs bhs loso, confident – split jump to straddle 1/2, also solid – gainer full, basically holds the stick? Kind of a step salute. 9.875

Ballard – FX – LSU – DLO, controls the step back – back 1.5 to front lay to stag, comfortable positions, front lay somewhat lower than the 1.5 – switch ring to switch 1/2, more comfortable than the beam leaps – double pike, controls front foot. 9.900

Siegfeldt – BB – OU – bhs loso, large break, leg up to horizontal – cat leap is nice into aerial – beat to split ring jump, secure – gainer full dismount, holds the stick with a lean forward. 9.750

Shchennikova – FX – LSU – front 2/1, a bit sideward on the step, a bit out of control – back 1.5 to front lay, good display of the second element rising, crisp layout position – switch to switch ring 1/2, under – rudi to split jump, travel back.

9.925.

And we’ve lost our minds.

Bowers – BB – OU – bhs loso series, controlled landing – split leap to switch 1/2, shows good 180 position on the switch 1/2 – 2/1 dismount, finds the stick. Nice one. 9.950

Brock – FX – LSU – double pike step back, possible OOB, right toward the line – double tuck, nice shape in the air but lands a tad forward and it causes a hop – switch side to popa is solid – back 1.5, mis-punches on her combination, tries to do a front tuck full out of it but can’t get it around. 9.150

Davis – BB – OU – bhs loso series, check adjustment – aerial – another check, larger this time – beat to split ring jump, smooth – 2/1, nearly shows the stick but doesn’t, steps back. 9.800

KJ Johnson – FX – LSU – FTDT, takes it too far, step back OOB, possible second foot OOB as she’s stepping back in – back 1.5 to front lay, also a strong and clean middle pass – switch side to popa is hit – double tuck, good position, rebound on landing. 9.775

Torrez – BB – OU – great wolf jump – check on choreography – side aerial to loso is right on though – swtich to switch 1/2, holds it – double tuck dismount, step back. 9.850

Finnegan – FX – LSU – double arabian to excellent stag jump, very nice – back 2.5 to front tuck, nice height, does take a step back to control – switch ring to split full shows good 180s – back 1.5 to front lay, tries to hold long enough before showing her crossover step. Pretty. And it goes 9.950

Smith – BB – OU – bhs loso, secure, – aerial, holds it – straddle 1/2 to korbut is excellent – gainer full, near stick, small step. A couple tentative squeezes in this routine early, but will get the score they need. 9.850. Oh, a reasonable and realistic number.

Bryant – FX – LSU – double front, slide forward today, showing some lack of control – front lay to rudi, good control – switch ring to switch 1/2 are hit – front 2/1, slide forward, tries to cover with dance but should be a control deduction. 9.900

FINAL:
Oklahoma – 197.600
LSU – 197.450

LSU will of course take that score after those opening 196s, and while it was fanciful in a way that doesn’t reflect the performance, I think they’ll be pleased with the hit competition. I still have questions about who the best replacement for Johnson is in pretty much every lineup.

Oklahoma takes the win with a good score, but will know that there are several teams in the NCAA that would have defeated them today with that performance, which was just OK on the Oklahoma spectrum. Lots of steps and uncharacteristic landings that made it much closer than they would have intended.

Also, Ohio State did just hang on to beat Georgia after a weak vault rotation, Ohio State finishing on 196.250 to Georgia on 196.125. Rutgers goes 194.675, and Fisk breaks 190 for the first time with 190.100.

 

 

 

 

 

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