By the end of the first rotation Friday night, about the only thing in doubt was which Utah gymnast would win the all-around.
Kristina Baskett threw a 9.975 vault, followed by Ashley Postell's perfect 10. The two were so far ahead of their opponents, the only mystery was which one would sustain her scores throughout the meet.
After both were awarded 9.875s for their bar routines, the break came on the beam, with Baskett's 9.775 not counting on the Utes' team score while Postell posted a 9.95 to take command heading into the fiinal rotation on floor.
" I thought our fans were awesome tonight," a bubbly Baskett said afterward. "They were really into the meet right from the start, and I thought they gave us a real lift."
Added Postell, "I think we built our momentum off our first routine, and our fans really helped out. I thought they really took it up a notch tonight."
Coach Greg Marsden agreed.
"When you follow up a 9.975 with a perfect 10," he said, "the crowd can sense something special is happening, and they were into the meet the whole night."
Baskett"s floor routine was a solid 9.9.
"I was going after my landings tonight, and I think that helped us overall," she said.
Postell began her floor with her signature double Arabian (two somersaults and a half twist) and landed it easily. She followed that with a solid performance, landing each of her passes and finishing with a double twist. Her 9.925 was the highest awarded on the night and sealed her all-around award with a 39.75 score. Baskett was second in the all-around with 39.525.
It was not that Utah State and Southern Utah weren't competing they were just too far behind right out of the gates. Southern Utah's Kelly Dangerfield finished fourth in the all-around, fully a half point behind Utah's Daria Bijak, who finished third with 39.225. Utah State's Nicki Feeley was tied for sixth overall with SUU's Elise Wheeler with 37.875.
The USU and SUU scores were some of their lowest of the year, while Utah's 197.2 was among its highest.
Marsden said, "I think we"re gaining confidence each week. I like where we're heading. We're 85-90 percent where we want to be with just a few upgrades left in some of our routines."
Postell added, "As a senior, I think I've finally figured things out about what's required to move to the next level. I think (my teammates) all help each other out."
On her second perfect 10 on vault an event she sheepishly says is not her best she said, "I think I'm more aware of where I need to be."NOTES: The meet featured six gymnasts from the state of Utah. SUU led the contingent with three: Kellie Dangerfield and Erin Morgan from SLC and Tehani Douglas from Spanish Fork. Utah's local is Jessica Duke of Sandy, and USU featured freshman Maegan Snodgrass of South Jordan, who did not compete in the meet.
Friday's all-around scores
Ashley Postell, Utah, 39.75
Kristina Baskett, Utah 39.525
Daria Bijak, Utah 39.225
Kelly Dangerfield, SUU, 38.7
Jenna Vogt, SUU, 38.5
Nicki Feeley, USU, 37.875
E-mail: [email protected]