UCLA Gymnastics at NCAA Regionals Preview

Danusia Francis

The #6 UCLA Gymnastics team travels to Columbus to compete for a spot in NCAA Championship weekend.

The UCLA Gymnastics team begins the Quest for #109 this Saturday in Columbus, Ohio at NCAA Regionals. The meet will begin at 3pm UCLA time.

There will be six teams competing - #6 UCLA, #7 LSU, #18 Arizona, host #20 OSU, #24 Central Michigan, and #31 North Carolina State (that is also the seeding of the teams, 1-6.) Live video with a feed for each event (yesssssss) will be available courtesy of Ohio State. You can also follow @uclagymnastics on twitter for live scoring and updates. UCLA will have the Olympic Rotation, meaning the start on vault, moving to the bars, then beam, then finishing on the floor.

At Regionals, the objective for the Bruins is simple: place in the top 2, and you return home to Westwood to compete for the National Championship in your home gym. UCLA has won 20 Regionals title, including three in a row. NCAA Championship weekend is April 19-21. (It runs three days, Semi-Finals are the first day, the actual Championship (for the team title) is on the second, and individual event titles (excluding all-around) on the third day.

Teams are assigned to the regions in a "snake" for the top three teams, which is why #6 UCLA and #7 UCLA are paired together in Ohio. (so for example, the #1 team is paired with the #12 and #13 team) The remaining three teams are "podded" together by region whenever possible.

#7 LSU (#2 seed in the Columbus region)
LSU is currently ranked #7 in the country, just 0.020 behind UCLA with a RQS of 197.180. They are the fourth ranked team out of the SEC, and always behind Georgia and Alabama. They are ranked #1 in the country on the vault with an average score of 49.495 (insane. That's practically a 9.9 average per gymnast.) (in contrast, UCLA is 9th with a 49.375. That's 1 hop on a landing.) They are 11th on the uneven bars (UCLA is 9th), 12 on the beam, and fifth on the floor. Their top individual gymnast is Rhegan Courville, who is ranked #7 in the country with a RQS of 39.55, with her best event being the floor.

#18 Arizona (#3 seed in the region)
UCLA did not compete against Arizona this year, and they did not directly compete against each other at Pac-12s, as Arizona was in the first session, and UCLA in the second. Arizona has a RQS of 196.090, and then rank in the 16-21 range on the four apparatuses. Aubree Cristello is their top individual gymnast, ranked 17th in the country with a 39.405 RQS, and 24th overall on the vault.

#20 Ohio State (#4 in the region)
tOSU is currently ranked #20 in the country with a RQS of 196.005. They are ranked 24th overall on the vault, with a 49.075, 25th on the floor with a 49.110, 18th on the beam with a 49.050, and 23rd on the bars with a 49.015. They came in fifth at the Big-10 Championships. Their top individual gymnast is Sarah Miller, who is unranked in the all-around but is in the top 25 on the vault and beam.

#24 Central Michigan (#5 in the region)
CMU is ranked #24, tied with Maryland, out of the MAC, and the co-MAC champion this year, with a RQS of 195.810. They are in the top 25 in the bars and on the floor. Their top individual gymnast is Brittany Petzold, who averages around a 39.2-39.30 in the all-around.

#31 North Carolina State (#6 in the region)
North Carolina State comes in at #31 in the country, with an elusive RQS score, but it looks like they average in the 195's. The Wolf Pack are ranked #24 on the balance beam and won the EAGL. Their two top gymnasts are Stephanie Oulette and Diahanna Ham, both averaging around a 39.2ish in the all-around.

If everything holds to form, and UCLA goes 24 for 24, the Bruins should take one of the top two spots. Ideally the Bruins want to score as high as possible to secure a better spot in the Semi-Finals. Twelve teams will travel to Westwood, and one of them should be UCLA.

Go Bruins.

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