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Season-High Vault and Floor Efforts Power No. 3 Utes To Beat No. 16 Sun Devils

Feb 6, 2021

Final Results

TEMPE, Ariz. - Propelled by season-highs on vault and floor, the No. 3 Utah gymnasts remained undefeated in Pac-12 competition following a 197.450-197.150 win over No. 16 Arizona State on Saturday afternoon at the Desert Financial Arena in Tempe, Ariz. Utah is now 6-1 overall on the season and 3-0 in conference action.

"The interior of the meet was by far our strongest," said head coach Tom Farden on today's efforts. "Vault and floor were incredible. Abby started us off incredible on bars and then Alani had that uncharacteristic fall on bars. We felt things tightened up after that, but really showed some fight coming back. You could just see the momentum was building. On balance beam, we got dinged up a little bit, but not too bad at the end."

Utah struggled to find its landings on bars to start the meet and quickly trailed Arizona State 49.350-49.225 after the first rotation. Abby Paulson began the set with a terrific 9.85 and a stuck dismount, but an uncharacteristic fall from Alani Sabado in the second spot put the pressure on. Utah saw three straight 9.825s from Alexia Burch, Maile O'Keefe and Emilie LeBlanc. Cristal Isa gave the rotation its first 9.90 to close out the set.

The Red Rocks exploded on vault after five-of-six gymnasts earned or matched a season-high mark. Isa kicked off the rotation with a season-best 9.85 and was followed by O'Keefe's career-high 9.90. Lucy Stanhope dropped in a season-high 9.875 as the third gymnast before Cammy Hall posted a 9.85.

Coming off a previous season-best last week, Burch exploded off the table and from there it was near perfection. Burch posted a career-high 9.975 on her Yurchenko 1.5 to win her third-straight vault title. Not done yet, Jaedyn Rucker added a season-tying 9.875 to push Utah to a season-high 49.475 on vault.

Even with a season-best vault outing, Utah still had to compete from behind after trailing 98.725-98.700 at the halfway point. It didn't take the Red Rocks long to pull ahead in Tempe after Utah's floor lineup rattled off another season-high event score, this time posting a 49.425 on floor.

Paulson stepped out of bounds in the leadoff spot, but Adrienne Randall posted a 9.825 to get things back on track for the Utes. Building from there, Stanhope continued her solid night with a season-high 9.875, along with Rucker posting another season high of 9.90. O'Keefe collected her second career high of the night after working her way to a 9.925 on floor, while the rotation ended with Sydney Soloski earning a 9.90.

Utah moved to beam to close out the competition leading 148.125-147.750. The Utes adjusted the lineup and brought Burch back to the leadoff spot where it payed dividends and saw a solid 9.85 to set the tone. In her Ute beam debut, Stanhope had an excellent first routine under pressure on the road and scored a 9.825. Randall followed with a 9.80, while Isa added a 9.825. O'Keefe capped off her night in the all-around with a 9.875 on beam, while Paulson improved the final score by posting her second-straight 9.95 on beam.

O'Keefe won her third all-around title of the season after scoring her second-straight 39.525 and earned a share of the floor title. Burch collected the vault title from her career-high outing, while Paulson took home the beam victory.

Utah will have a bye week before hosting the UCLA Bruins on Friday, Feb. 19. The Utes and Bruins will clash on ESPNU at 7 p.m. MT at the Jon M. Huntsman Center.