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BACK-TO-BACK CHAMPS: Red Rocks Claim PAC-12 Championship, Topple Cal by Over Half a Point

2021 NCAA Division I Women’s Gymnastics Championship Photo by C. Morgan Engel/NCAA Photos via Getty Images

Claiming a portion of the regular season title wasn’t enough for Utah gymnastics as the team claimed the title outright after a dominating win in the PAC-12 championship where freshman Grace McCallum shined particularly bright en route to Utah’s second consecutive conference title.

Cammy Hall’s early 9.150 on the vault put the Red Rocks in a tough spot in the first rotation, however, Alexia Burch and McCallum were clutch, claiming an event-high of 9.925 followed by 9.875 respectively, helping Utah claim a 49.275 in their opening routine.

With momentum on their side following a strong finish on the vault, Amelie Morgan opened up the second rotation with an impressive 9.900 on the bars, but it was McCallum’s perfect 10.000 in the second spot that brought the Maverick Center crowd to their feet, her second of the season. Utah’s lowest counted score in the second rotation belonged to Mailie O’Keefe with a 9.825 as the Red Rocks came roaring back to life with a 49.550 on the bars, giving them a .025 overall lead before moving to beam.

A slight balance check cost McCallum from breaking 9.900 as she notched a 9.850, her lowest score of the event, but the Red Rocks roster made up for her miscue with an electrifying rotation that featured a 9.925 from Morgan, a pair of 9.950s out of Mailie O’Keefe and Cristal Isa, and 9.975 in the anchor spot held by Abby Paulson, giving Utah a cumulative 49.650 on the beam and a .275 lead over second-place Cal.

After opening with a string of sub 9.900 scores, McCallum again played hero, notching a 9.950 in the four spot, followed by a 9.925 by O’Keefe, clinching victory for the Red Rocks before anchor Sidney Soloski had a chance to hit the floor, though her 9.925 was good enough to give Utah a final 198.00, toppling second-place Cal by a dominating .575 differential.

Utah now awaits their seeding in the NCAA regional round where they will compete for their 46th consecutive trip to the national championship finals.