Atkinson Shines As Gym Devils Fall to Arizona

Jan. 24, 2010

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Despite a career-night from junior Mary Atkinson, the Arizona State women's gymnastics team suffered a 195.675-194.9 loss to Arizona. The score is the Sun Devils' highest of the season. Atkinson led the team with personal best scores on vault, bars, beam and in the all-around. She tied for first in the all-around with Arizona's Sarah Tomczyk.

The Sun Devils started out strong as they attacked the vault full force. Atkinson led the charge as she placed second with a career-best 9.9. Sophomore Callie Price notched her own career-high on the event as she tallied a 9.85. Bormann tied her personal-best of 9.8 set the previous week and freshman Amelia Rew earned a career-best 9.725. Nickie Johnson earned a 9.625 to set the Sun Devils at a 48.875. The Wildcats earned a 48.975 on bars in the first rotation.

Bars proved to be one of the most exciting events of the night as the Gym Devils garnered three career-highs to score 49.2. Atkinson again led the Sun Devils as she earned an all-time best 9.95 after a near perfect routine to place first on bars. Sophomore Kahoku Palafox nailed her landing to record her own personal best of a 9.9 while freshman Johnson was given a 9.825. Francesca Mercurio tallied a 9.775 while Stephanie Hangartner was given a 9.75. The Wildcats earned 49.125 on vault, bringing the meet to a close 98.075-98.1.

Balance beam determined the winner of the meet. The Sun Devils suffered two falls and were also forced to count Mercurio's 9.475 after she did not receive her full start value due to a missed connection in her jump series. Atkinson, Palafox and freshman Christina Salavec each tallied career-bests 9.775 to lead the team. The Sun Devils earned 48.05 points in the process to go into the final rotation nearly a full tenth behind Arizona.

The Gym Devils finished strong on floor, earning 48.775 to end the meet with a total of 194.9. Atkinson was again the Sun Devils' event-leader as she was given a 9.825 to place second. Junior Brittany Schuett scored her second 9.8 of the season to place third overall. Mercurio performed on floor for the first time this season, earning a 9.725. Salavec tied her career-best with a 9.725. Johnson scored a solid 9.7 to round out the Sun Devils.

Top-ranked UCLA awaits, as the Gym Devils will head to Westwood, Calif., next weekend. The meet begins at 2 p.m. PT.

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