The Arizona State Sun Devils faced the Utah Utes at home in Tempe, Arizona, where the Red Rocks won with a 197.375 to the Sun Devils’ 195.825. Both teams performed well, with Arizona State improving their consistency and Utah winning every title except for the floor exercise. Makenna Merrell-Giles and MyKayla Skinner continued to be all-around standouts for the Utes, while Cairo Leonard-Baker won the floor title and placed third in the all-around for the Gym Devils.
Starting off on vault, Arizona State competed six Yurchenko fulls for a total of 49.050. Though some vaults lacked amplitude, they were able to count four scores of 9.800 or above, with Leonard-Baker’s 9.875 placing second on the event. On the uneven bars, Utah put up a big score of 49.500, with Skinner and Missy Reinstadtler scoring 9.950s to tie for first on the event. With stuck dismounts and big releases, this bars lineup will help Utah score big numbers this season.
Utah kept going strong on vault, scoring a 49.275. They began with solid Yurchenko fulls, and Merrell-Giles’ Yurchenko one-and-a-half won the event with a 9.900. Skinner’s Yurchenko double full wasn’t as clean as it has been in previous weeks, but still scored well for a 9.875. The Sun Devils competed well on bars for a total of 49.100. This score could be difficult to repeat on the road, as Arizona State had minor form issues and short handstands. However, this week’s lineup was much improved, with six hit routines and counting two scores of 9.875.
On the balance beam, the Sun Devils fought through wobbly beam routines which kept the scores to 9.600s and 9.700s. Leonard-Baker posted the highest score for Arizona with a 9.750, competing a solid back handspring layout series and a one-and-a-half twist dismount. Meanwhile, Utah increased their lead on the floor exercise, scoring a 49.325. Sydney Soloski scored a 9.925, placing second on the event with a powerful double layout. Merrell-Giles placed third with a 9.900, showing clean execution as always. Skinner unfortunately landed short on a few passes, limiting her score to a 9.850.
The Utes clinched the win on the balance beam with a total score of 49.275. Skinner came back with a beautiful routine for a 9.925, winning the event and anchoring the Utah lineup. Merrell-Giles capped off her strong all-around performance with a 9.875 on the balance beam, tying for second on the event with teammate Kari Lee. Arizona State also finished their competition strong on floor, scoring a 49.225. Leonard-Baker anchored their lineup, posting a 9.950 to win the event. The Sun Devils counted four more scores of at least 9.800 thanks to clean execution and great landings to close the competition.Tags: Arizona State, Arizona State Sun Devils, Cairo Leonard-Baker, Kari Lee, MaKenna Merrell-Giles, Missy Reinstadtler, MyKayla Skinner, NCAA Gymnastics, Sydney Soloski, Utah, Utah Utes