The No. 6 Utah Red Rocks gymnastics started off the season strong with a 196.900-193.350 win over rival BYU at the Marriott Center in Provo. 196.900 is the highest score in the first meet of the season for the Red Rocks since 2005.
Tory Wilson won all of her events, including the all-around (39.450) and floor (9.90), and tied Georgia Dabritz (9.925) for first on vault. Dabritz (9.90) won bars as well. Sophomore Baely Rowe won her first event with a 9.90 on beam. The beam, an event that has proved problematic for the Red Rocks the last few seasons, was much stronger tonight. Utah scored a 49.200.
"Beam spoke for itself tonight," said co-head coach Greg Marsden. "For the last two to three years, it has been tough event for us and cost us moving into the Super Six for the past two. We're better this year because our returning people have improved and we're better because of recruiting."
Wilson and Kailah Delaney started off the beam with back-to-back 9.80s, reducing the pressure on Rowe, helping her to achieve a career-high 9.90 effort. Two freshmen, Kari Lee (9.85) and Maddy Stover (9.775), were strong as expected in their Utah beam debuts. Senior anchor Corrie Lothrop (9.85) finished the event and night strong.
Utah's strongest event on the night was vault, where the Red Rocks scored a 49.30. Dabritz and Wilson both posted 9.925s on the vault (the highest individual event scores on the night) with Lee and Kailah Delaney both posting 9.85s.
On the strong beam and overall performance, Dabritz said, "It was definitely a promising start." "It wasn't unexpected [about the beam and final score]," said Kassandra Lopez. Lopez saw her first action last night after missing last season due to an Achilles tear.
"It was a perfect opening meet from a coach's perspective. We had a lot of good things, but there were lots of areas where we've been doing better in the gym and can improve for our next meet. We had some first-meet jitters, but we didn't give away anything big and it was a great opening meet on the road," said Marsden.
The Red Rocks will host their first meet of the season when No. 19 Boise State, Southern Utah, and UC Davis come to the Huntsman Center on Friday, Jan. 16 at 7 p.m. MT.