With a final score of 197.5625, UCLA gymnastics took the top spot in the first NCAA semfinal and punched their ticket to tomorrow’s Super Six final.
After the first rotation on the vault, UCLA scored a 49.1875, which was good enough to hold on to second place for two rotations. Scoring was conservative, due to the fact that there are six judges with the high and low scores being dropped, but Anna Glenn, Pauline Tratz, and Kyla Ross all earned a score of 9.85 on their vault.
After a bye on the second rotation, the Bruins moved onto the bars for the third rotation. Kyla Ross hit a near-perfect routine and earned a 9.95 (still can’t figure out where they found an error to take off the .05!). Peng-Peng Lee also had a good routine and earned a 9.875 for her performance, as did JaNay Honest, who brought home a 9.8625. Halfway through their events, UCLA was sitting in second place with a 98.5625 behind LSU, who was in first place with a 98.625.
The fourth rotation was on the “four-inch stage”, as Miss Val calls it. The first three competitors, Grace Glenn, Madison Kocian, and Brielle Nguyen, all put up solid performances and identical scores of 9.8375. In the fourth spot, Katelyn Ohashi had another amazing performance on beam, and earned a 9.925. Ross was once again near perfect and brought home another 9.95. Lee was up next with her incredibly unique mount on the beam and was just shy of another Perfect 10 at a 9.9875. To earn this, she received a 10 from four of the six judges. This rotation was enough to move the Bruins into first place.
After the Bruins had their second by rotation, they closed the meet on floor. UCLA only needed to average an approximately 9.72 in this rotation and, according to announcer John Roethlisberger, this floor lineup “could do this before they have their Cheerios in the morning.” Kocian started off the rotation with a 9.875 and Gracie Kramer, who had to wait all day to perform, added another 9.875 with her energetic floor exercise. Ross followed in the third spot with a 9.8875. Tratz earned the Bruins a 9.8625, and Felicia Hano had a great routine until her last tumbling pass when she stepped out of bounds, earning a 9.7625. Katelyn Ohashi rounded out the floor team, and with, as I’ve said before, the best routine in collegiate gymnastics, and added a near perfect 9.9625.
Besides qualifying for the Super Six, UCLA is in the running for THREE event titles! Ross’s 9.95 on bars, Lee’s 9.9875 on beam, and Ohashi’s 9.9625 on floor are good enough so far to keep them in first place. It may take Perfect 10s to take those titles away and the use of six judges make a Perfect 10 nearly impossible.
Finally, as if that wasn’t enough, Ross is also in the running for the All-Around title, sitting at a 39.6375 after session one.
All of the final scores for the first semifinal are available in case you want to check them out.
Tomorrow’s Super Six final begins at 4:00 pm PT and will be broadcast on ESPNU.
Go Bruins! Bring Home NC #115!!!