The University of Utah Red Rocks gymnastics team placed second in the NCAA National Semifinals afternoon session, allowing them to advance to the final round of competition over Alabama and LSU.
Sophomore Maile O’Keefe shined on the bars, notching an event-high 9.950, a score that helped the Red Rocks clinch a spot in the final four by edging out third-place Alabama by a mere .025 points.
Utah will be joined by Oklahoma, who took first place in the afternoon session with a dominating 198,0875, edging out Utah’s 197.6000, along with the top two teams from the morning session, Michigan (197.8625) and Florida (197.4375).
If the first-day scores are anything to go off, Utah will need to have their best numbers of the season if they hope to dethrone Oklahoma, which means improving upon their vault rotation. Despite each of the six gymnasts hitting their routine, the Red Rocks failed to break the 9.900+ threshold, with junior Cammy Hall leading the squad with a 9.8750. By comparison, Oklahoma’s roster averaged a 9.885 on the vault, easily besting a Utah team that has struggled mightily in the event as of late.
Coverage for the NCAA Finals will be aired nationally on ABC starting at 1:30 PM MT.