No. 5 Ute Gymnasts Close Out Regular Season Against No. 20 Utah State
Fresh off its Pac-12 Regular Season Championship, No. 5 Utah gymnastics (9-1, 6-0 Pac-12) will host No. 20 Utah State in the regular season finale this Friday, March 12 inside the Jon M. Huntsman Center. Celebrating senior night, the Utes and Aggies will send off the seniors prior to getting action underway at 7 p.m. MT. The meet will be live streamed, as well as broadcast on Utah's flagship radio station ESPN 700. Mike Lageschulte will call the play-by-play for the stream and radio, while Kyndal (Robarts) Pond will serve as the color analyst.
IN THE RANKINGS
Utah slid a spot to No. 5 in the nation after last week's competition. The beam team continues to pace Utah in the event rankings, coming in as No. 3 in the nation. Floor and vault are ranked No. 6, while uneven bars ranks No. 15 for the Utes. Maile O'Keefe held her spot at No. 1 in the nation on beam, while the Ute sophomore is now No. 9 in the all-around and is tied for No. 23 on bars. Abby Paulson is ranked tied for No. 4 in the nation on beam, Alexia Burch is No. 8 on vault, Sydney Soloski is tied for No. 13 on floor, and Cristal Isa is tied for No. 17 on beam and No. 23 on bars to round out the Red Rocks ranked in the top-25.
• Utah changed three of four event lineups for the second-straight week and produced a season-high 197.575.
• Utah finished the 2021 Pac-12 slate undefeated for the second year in a row and just third time overall since joining the conference.
• Utah has claimed the only two Pac-12 Regular Season Championships to date, as well as holding three Pac-12 Championships.
• Utah's season-high 197.575 is the highest score Utah has recorded in Corvallis, Ore. in school history. The Utes previously held a high score of 197.150 in Corvallis, which was recorded in 2019.
• Utah has hit 183-192 routines this season. Gymnasts who have hit every routine are O'Keefe (31-31), Cristal Isa (27-27), Adrienne Randall (11-11) and Sydney Soloski (8-8).
• Individual event winners this season are O'Keefe (17), Burch (4), Isa (3), Soloski (3), Hall (2), Paulson (2) and Jaedyn Rucker (2).
• Pac-12 award winners this season for Utah are O'Keefe as Gymnast of the Week (Jan. 21, Feb. 2, Feb. 9); Soloski (Jan. 21, Feb. 23), Paulson (Feb. 2), Burch (Feb. 9) and Rucker (Mar. 2) as Specialists of the Week; and Rucker (Jan. 21, Feb. 9) and Burch (Feb. 2, Feb. 23) as the Coaches' Choice winners.
LEADING THE PAC
• Utah is No. 1 in the Pac-12 on vault, beam and floor. Alexia Burch is ranked No. 1 in the conference on vault, Maile O'Keefe is No. 1 on beam and in the all-around, while Sydney Soloski is No. 1 on floor in the Pac-12.
• Utah has the No. 1 and No. 2 gymnasts on beam in the Pac-12 in O'Keefe and Abby Paulson, while Cristal Isa is tied for No. 3 on beam.
• Utah holds the highest event scores in the conference this season on vault (49.475) and beam (49.600), along with the highest individual scores on vault (Burch, 9.975), beam (O'Keefe, 10.0) and floor (Soloski, 9.975).
Utah leads the all-time series with Utah State 91-3 and are 39-0 in Salt Lake City. The Utes have won the last 89 matchups, including earlier this season at the Rio Tinto Best of Utah quad meet. Utah downed Utah State in the 2021 season opener in West Valley City, topping the Aggies 196.900-194.350 at the Maverik Center. Cristal Isa won the all-around, while O'Keefe won shares of the floor and beam titles. Abby Paulson also took a share of the beam win with O'Keefe, while Cammy Hall earned her first career victory on vault.
SCOUTING UTAH STATE
Head Coach: Amy Smith (4th year)
2020 NCAA Finish: N/A
National Ranking: No. 20
Record: 2-9, 2-7 MRGC
Notes: Utah State is coming off a season-high 196.775, which marked the third-best road score in school history, in a tri-meet with Denver and Southern Utah … Utah State ranks No. 14 on beam and No. 19 on vault as the top two events for the team … Utah State is led by all-arounder Leighton Varnadore, who is coming off a season-best 39.325 … Autumn DeHarde ranks No. 17 in the nation on beam with an NQS of 9.919 to lead individual event rankings for the Aggies.
Utah gymnastics will be in action next at the Pac-12 Championships at the Maverik Center in West Valley City, Utah on Saturday, March 20. The first session of the conference event will be at 12 p.m. MT, while the night session is slated to begin at 7 p.m. MT.