Utes look good in defeating Cal; USU squeaks past SUU

Published: Friday, Jan. 17 2014 10:56 p.m. MST

BERKELY, Calif. — Three spectacular events gave the Utah gymnasts a big enough cushion to beat Cal 196.875-196.275 on the 39th-anniversary of the first Utah gymnastics meet back on January 17, 1976.

The Utes looked in postseason form on bars (49.325), vault (49.500) and floor (49.475) in building up a 148.300-147.150 lead against the Bears. They gave back several of those tenths on their final event, when Baely Rowe and Mary Beth Lofgren both fell off beam.

"It was a great night, but we have to get better at finishing on beam," said Utah coach Greg Marsden. "The other three events, they (the Utes) relaxed and let it come to them. We need to approach beam that way. Mary Beth (Lofgren) is at the end of the lineup because she is dependable, so I am not overly concerned"

Tory Wilson won the all-around for the second straight week, scoring a 39.400 and picked up her first vault win of the season with a 9.975. Georgia Dabritz was a double winner for the second week, scoring a 9.95 on floor and tying for first on bars with Corrie Lothrop (9.90). "We're in a great place for this time of year," said Wilson. "We started strong on bars, which was a problem for us early last season."

Wilson was right about a bar set highlighted by 9.90s from Lothrop and Dabritz. Lothrop, who fell last week in her return from last year's season-ending injury, looked back her 2012 form, when she earned All-America honors on the event. She and Dabritz tied for first on the event-the second bar win in two weeks for Dabritz, the 2013 NCAA runner-up. Utah led 49.325-49.025 after one rotation.

As good as the Utes were on bars, they were even better on vault, where they scored a 49.500 behind Wilson's 9.975, a 9.95 came by Kailah Delaney and Dabritz's 9.90 to close the set. After two events, Utah led 98.875-97.950.

While Cal was turning in a solid beam set, the Utes more than matched them on the floor to take a 148.300-147.150 three-event lead. Dabritz again led the way, this time with a 9.95, while Nansy Damianova and Del Priore performed 9.875 routines.

Utah returns home next week to meet UCLA on Jan. 25 in a meet televised on the Pac-12 Networks.

BYU: At Boise, BYU gymnastics improved from last week to record a 194.675 and finish third in a tri-meet at Taco Bell Arena.

Boise State scored a 195.150, and Denver narrowly edged BYU with a 194.825 to end the meet.

We struggled a little on bars and vault which are typically two of our stronger events, BYU head coach Brad Cattermole said. We werent terrible, but we just werent on. The team was considerably better on the balance beam and did really well on the floor. The Cougars were very consistent all night long as they recorded scores of 48.625, 48.475, 48.800 and 48.775 in the four events.

BYU started on the floor as sophomore Eliane Kulczyk tied her career high with a 9.800 on her routine. Up next, four gymnasts scored almost identical scores on the vault as two gymnasts scored a 9.750 and two others finished with a 9.725.

Megan Bain scored a team-high 9.850 on the balance beam, BYU's best event of the night. Bain's score was the best by any gymnast in the meet. Sophomore Makenzie Johnson, last weeks gymnast of the week, added a 9.800 to the teams beam score of 48.8000. On the bars, senior Haylee Rollins led the team with a 9.800, while Kulczyk added a 9.775.

"We're moving in the right direction," Cattermole said. "We'll keep working and keep improving. We're hoping for big things as the season goes."

BYU travels to Logan, Utah, Friday for its next meet against Utah State

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