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(Press Release)Utah gymnastics coach Greg Marsden wanted to get some different gymnasts into the lineup on Monday in Logan, Utah, but gave his seniors the option to choose their events. Kristina Baskett asked to go all-around. Good choice. She won or shared every individual title and the all-around to lead Utah past Utah State 196.950-193.500.
With three meets in seven days, Marsden tried to give some of his regulars a breather. First, Baskett nixed the idea, then senior Nina Kim ended up a last-minute replacement in the floor lineup when Stephanie McAllister rushed off the floor ill after two events.
Still, his plan worked for the most part, with Jacquelyn Johnson competing to count for the first time and scoring a 9.775 on floor, and sophomore Gael Mackie getting her first crack at the all-around. Mackie placed third with a 39.125, trailing only teammates Baskett (39.675) and Jamie Deetscreek (career-high 39.50).
Getting a break was Annie DiLuzio, a three-event starter, who competed only to count on vault at USU, scoring a 9.875. DiLuzio also tried an exhibition bar routine—the first try on that apparatus of her college career—but she fell. Daria Bijak was another who begged off of tumbling, sticking with bars (9.875) and beam (9.85).
Baskett was in prime form, despite a long wait to compete. The Utes arrived at the arena nearly four hours before the start of the meet after leaving Salt Lake City early when heavy snows were predicted. She tied a career-high on the beam (9.90), tying for first with Kim, and setting season highs on vault (9.95) and bars (9.95). She tied for first on floor (9.875) with Deetscreek.
Deetscreek shattered her career marks, hitting new all-around (39.50), bars (9.925) and floor (9.875) highs, while tying her career best on vault (9.875) and beam (9.875).
Utah showed why it is the No. 1 ranked bar team in the nation on the first rotation. While Stephanie McAllister stumbled as the first competitor and Kim lost tenths on a step on her dismount, the other four looked nearly flawless. From the number three post, Deetscreek floated a career-best 9.925. Impressive routines by Gael Mackie and Daria Bijak received identical 9.875 scores and then Baskett stepped up with a 9.95. After one rotation, Utah led 49.375-48.200.
The Utes were nearly as good on the vault, posting a 49.300 and taking a big 98.675-97.025 two-event lead. Again, Baskett was all but perfect at the end of the lineup, scoring another 9.95. She got some nice lead-ins again from her three predecessors. In her first vault to count of the year, 2008 vault All-American Kyndal Robarts produced a 9.875. Deetscreek went 9.825 and DiLuzio landed a 9.875.
Utah had a little dip midway through floor when Kim flew out of bounds and Robarts had a fall and a big error in her first floor routine of the season. Everyone else looked sharp. Jac Johnson, in the first scoring routine of her career, started things off with a 9.775. Mackie went 9.80, Deetscreek was rock solid for a 9.875 and Baskett wrapped things up with a 9.875. Utah totaled a 48.925 and led 147.600-144.575 after three.
The Utes concluded with their best beam set of the year—a 49.350. Deetscreek (9.875), Baskett (9.90) and Kim (9.90) were the big scorers, but Robarts (9.825) and Bijak (9.85) also had fine routines.
(Courtesy University of Utah Athletic Department)