Kentucky Gymnastics Set For SEC Championship
By Jacob Most
March 22, 2013 -
Friday Practice Photos |
Championship Central | Live Scoring
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. - The No. 19 Kentucky gymnastics team enters Saturday's SEC Championship riding a school-record streak of four-straight scores more than 196.
Kentucky is coming off a program-record performance 196.775 at then-No. 16 Penn State last Saturday as UK set the school record for the second time in the last three weeks.
The meet, which will feature all eight SEC teams, will begin inside Verizon Arena at approximately 3:05 p.m. ET. Live scoring will be available at UKathletics.com.
Alexis Gross enters the nation's most competitive conference meet as the reigning SEC Specialist of the Week. The sophomore enjoyed perhaps the best meet of her career when she won her first two collegiate event titles with career high scores on uneven bars and balance beam.
The Pasadena, Md., native earned a Kentucky season-high balance beam score of 9.95, garnering a 10.0 from judge two in the process. She claimed the BB title leading UK to a school-record beam score of 49.475.
Her beam score was third-highest in school history behind two-time NCAA Balance Beam Champion Jenny Hansen and Heather Hite.
Earlier against Penn State, Gross claimed her first career 9.9 in any event to win uneven bars, the first event title of her career. She is the first Wildcat to garner scores of 9.9 or higher in multiple events at the same meet this season.
Gross is the first Wildcat to claim a SEC weekly award since Andrea Mitchell claimed Gymnast of the Week in March 2011.
Audrey Harrison also enters the meet with a league leading six all-around titles from seven 2013 conference meets. Her seven total AAs this season ranks second in the nation.
Kentucky is the SEC No. 7 seed and will compete in session I at the Championship on Saturday.
As the No. 7 seed, Kentucky will begin on balance beam, and rotate to floor exercise, vault and then uneven bars to end the competition.
SEC Championship seeding was determined by regional qualifying score (RQS) rankings released Monday by GymInfo.
The SEC champion will be determined by the team with the highest score regardless of session.
Seven of the eight SEC Championship participants are currently ranked in the national top-25.
Kentucky is ranked No. 19 nationally with a new school-record 196.060 RQS. Saturday's Championship is Kentucky's final competition before the NCAA Regional Championship field is announced Monday, March 25 at 3 p.m.
The Wildcats tied the school-record SEC Championship finish (fifth) last season.
Kentucky is ranked No. 25 on vault, No. 21 on uneven bars and No. 15 on beam.
Tickets for the SEC Championships are available at www.SECDigitalNetwork.com or by calling Ticketmaster at (800) 745-3000.
The 2013 SEC Gymnastics Championship will be aired March 28 at 5:30 p.m. ET on ESPNU and again on March 30 at 7:00 p.m. ET on ESPN.