Utah Utes, USU gymnastics: Lineup for USU meet up in air for Red Rocks
LOGAN Greg Marsden, whose Utah gymnastics team remains No. 1, had planned to make some lineup changes tonight at 7 when the Utes meet No. 46 Utah State in the Smith Spectrum.
Marsden has been planning to rest a couple of people during this three-meets-in-eight-days stretch.
But on Sunday, Gael Mackie and Cortni Beers, two youngsters he'd planned to insert into the lineups tonight, came in for treatments when Marsden opened the gym, and both felt like they were getting sick.
That left Marsden wondering what his lineup will, indeed, look like tonight as the 6-1 Utes meet the 0-4
Aggies for the first time under new USU coach Jeff Richards.
The Aggies are coming off a strong showing Friday in which they swept all four individual event titles and took two team event titles in a 192.575-192.225 loss at home to Cal State Fullerton.
Utah is coming off a home quad meet win over BYU, Southern Utah and Texas Woman's University, the Utes scoring 196.85, tying their second-best score of the season.
With a meet at No. 12 Nebraska this Friday, Marsden had planned to rest Daria Bijak, Annie DiLuzio and Nina Kim in an event or two and use Mackie, a sophomore, in her first career all-around appearance tonight. He planned to use Beers on bars, or possibly sophomore Jacq Johnson, and he wanted to use Johnson and Kyndal Robarts on floor.
That was still his tentative lineup Sunday evening, but he wasn't sure how illness might affect things and was hoping it would work like Kim's did last week. She didn't practice Thursday because she was ill, but Friday she turned in one of her best nights yet, scoring 39.50 in the all-around, just .05 off her career-high.
Kim was even able to do her upgrade on bars, doing a giant full before her Tkachev, and scored 9.90 on it, .25 off her career-high. Making that change and working toward a Yurchenko 1 1/2 vault, Kim said, keeps her senior year interesting.
"It's nice to be comfortable but kind of pushing yourself. It's my last year, so why not? Right?" she said.
Because Kim has had a sore knee, Marsden had hoped to rest her tonight on vault and floor, along with Bijak, who competed in the 2008 Summer Olympics for Germany. DiLuzio, with a sore ankle, will just do vault tonight, if Marsden can to stick to his game plan.
Marsden said Mackie, the 2004 Canadian Olympian, was really looking forward to doing her first all-around, and if she can't, it will be "a big disappointment."
The Utes already had to switch up their plans on Saturday. They came in for the usual conditioning day only to find a university-wide power outage. So Marsden drove his car up to the door and turned the speakers on loud, and the team did its spinning and weight-lifting to car audio.
The Aggies posted season-bests of 48.90 on both bars and floor and a season-second-best 48.225 on vault Friday, and Heather Heinrich and Nicole Simoneau each won two events. Heinrich's 9.85 on floor tied her career-high, and she won her third straight vaulting title. Simoneau posted her second straight beam win and also took bars at 9.85.
After tonight, the Aggies are off until Feb. 20 when they join Boise State and San Jose State at BYU.
Utah, USU gymnastics
No. 1 Utah at Utah State
Dee Glen Smith Spectrum, Logan
Tonight, 6:30 p.m.
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