Kentucky Finishes SEC Slate at No. 5 Auburn
Feb. 19, 2009
LEXINGTON, Ky. - Ending the conference portion of the schedule for Kentucky is a road meet in Auburn, Ala. The Kentucky gymnastics team (2-5 overall, 0-5 Southeastern Conference) will be hosted by the No. 5 Auburn Tigers (4-3, 2-3 SEC) Friday, Feb. 20 in Beard-Eaves-Memorial Coliseum at 8 p.m. ET.
The Wildcats are coming off a win against Centenary, 195.150-187.350, despite being outscored by the No. 3 Georgia Bulldogs' (8-0, 4-0 SEC) 196.975, in Memorial Coliseum.
UK had begun the night on vault, its best event this season ranking 11th in the nation. Sophomore Jasmine Minion led the Cats on vault for the second consecutive meet with a 9.825. Minion averages a 9.842 on the apparatus, never scoring below a 9.800 this season. Senior Natalie Rubinstein led the Wildcats for the fifth time this season on the uneven bars with a 9.825. The Hollywood, Fla., native holds an average of 9.830 and is top-25 on the event.
The third rotation held an event the Blue and White have struggled with all season, the balance beam. But on Friday the 13th, Kentucky found no bad luck and grabbed a season-high 48.575 on the event. Anchored by Hite's team-leading 9.800, the Wildcats hit six-for-six on the beam. The Wildcats finished the night strong in their typical fashion. Junior Hillary Ferguson nailed her routine, securing a season high-tying 9.900, good for the event's title.
The No. 5 Tigers are coming off a home win over the Arkansas Razorbacks. Auburn's record-setting night on bars and a strong finish on floor lifted the Tigers over seventh-ranked Arkansas 196.175-195.400.
Kentucky and Auburn last met during the SEC Championship meet. The Tigers placed fifth over Arkansas and Kentucky with a 196.100. During last season's Excite Night, UK took the win over the Tigers, 193.450-191.950. The Cats maintains the overall series with a 38-27 advantage.
Due to the use of Regional Qualifying Scores (RQS) for rankings, which started Feb. 16, Kentucky is not included in the rankings. Qualification for regional competition is based on a team's and an all-around competitor's six best regular-season-meet scores, of which three must be away. As of Feb. 16, the Wildcats only competed in two away meets (Alabama and Florida), but will resurface into the rankings next week on Mon., Feb. 23, after they travel to Auburn, Ala., this week.
Kentucky's next meet is scheduled for Fri., Feb. 27 when the Cats welcome four teams, Ball State, Illinois, UNC and William & Mary. The Wildcats continue to hold an undefeated record, 10-0, against non-conference teams in the regular season.