This evening, UCLA gymnastics opens the 2019 season in Pauley Pavilion against the 11th-ranked Nebraska Cornhuskers, who also appeared in the 2018 NCAA Super Six. Obviously, we know that UCLA won the national championship. Nebraska, on the other hand, placed sixth.
UCLA and Nebraska have met a total of 19 times in program history during the regular season. The Bruins lead the regular season series, 13-6. The teams met three times last season and UCLA won each time. The first meeting was at the Masters Classic which the Bruins won with a score of 197.500 while the Huskers took second with a score of 197.175. They met again in the NCAA semifinals where UCLA placed first again, scoring 197.5625. Nebraska was third with a score of 197.0125. Then, in the NCAA Super Six, the Bruins won the NCAA title with a score of 198.075 while Nebraska scored 196.8000.
The Huskers are led by seniors Sienna Crouse and Megan Schweihofer and junior Taylor Houchin, all of whom are All-Americans. Crouse was named to the Big Ten Gymnasts to Watch list. Schweihofer led the Huskers in the All-Around at the NCAA Championships, coming in 14th overall with her highest score of a 9.925 on Floor. All three gymnasts scored 9.88+ on Vault, but Crouse and Houchin had uncharacteristic low scores on the Bars. Crouse and Schweihofer scored 9.9+ with solid performances on Floor, which was the event where Nebraska scored the highest overall.
With each of the four events scored out of 50 points total (six gymnasts compete and the low score is dropped), UCLA has scored 49 points or higher in 59 straight rotations. The last time the Bruins scored under 49 points was in their season opener last year. UCLA dropped only two contests last season, one to Oklahoma by 0.1 and another to Utah by 0.125.
Probably the most anticipated event of the day will be the debut of the 2019 Katelyn Ohashi Floor routine, which will be a follow-up to her 2018 championship-winning Michael Jackson mash-up. Her routine garnered rave reviews online around the world, with estimates of over 100 million views.
Additionally, the 2018 championship banner will be raised in Pauley Pavilion at 5:40 pm before the meet begins.
This is your UCLA gymnastics vs. Nebraska open thread.