Roberts Finds her Footing with Red Rocks

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Sophomore Macey Roberts during her floor routine vs California at the Jon M. Huntsman Center on Saturday, Feb 4, 2017. Chris Ayers Daily Utah Chronicle.

Sophomore Macey Roberts grew up on a farm in McDonald, Tenn. One of her favorite things about life on the farm was having all of that space to roam around and have fun. Owning four-wheelers and rangers, Roberts would invite her friends over, designating her house as the hangout spot.

Aside from the space, Robert’s family owns 23 horses, nine dogs and six cats. With that many horses, Roberts picked up riding as a hobby and her family found a passion in showing horses.

“I have a lot of animals,” Roberts said. “My mom calls it our mini-zoo. I had a pony growing up and I would ride it sometimes, but most of our horses are Arabian so they are show horses, and my mom and dad handle all of that.”

When Roberts left home to go to college, she began her career at Maryland. Since transferring over to the University of Utah, Roberts wouldn’t want to be anywhere else, and co-head coach Megan Marsden is glad she is at the U.

Marsden mentioned that since Roberts has transferred to Utah she has been performing well. Marsden feels like Roberts is happy to be a part of a program that is all working towards a common goal.

“We work hard here and we don’t work any longer than other teams — there are rules on how long you get to work — but we work smart,” Marsden said. “I think in the first few weeks, [Roberts] wondered if she would ever have legs that weren’t sore on a given day, but I don’t think she ever looked back.”

Now on the Utah roster, Roberts loves the family-aspect of the team and she takes comfort in the fact that she could approach any gymnast on the team and she could even approach any of the coaches for that matter and they would be there for her. More than that, Roberts loves the opportunity Marsden and co-head coach Tom Farden have given her to be in the starting lineup.

“I mean that was the goal, just to make lineups somewhere, and to be in the lineup in two events, it is just amazing,” Roberts said.

Marsden and Farden weren’t exactly sure what they were going to get from Roberts when she first joined the program, because she first needed to adjust to the different culture. Now, Marsden says the team has been fortunate enough to have Roberts join the program.

Marsden thinks Roberts has provided what the Red Rocks needed most following the 2016 season — legs on vault and floor.

“We needed a person that can help us on those two events with some depth, and boy are we glad she came on the scene,” Marsden said. “She has been an incredible addition to the team in terms of a teammate, a team player, a competitor and a positive, light, fun personality.”

In her first meet as a Red Rock against Washington this season, Roberts hit the vault and floor, scoring a 9.8 on both events. While she felt that the next meet wasn’t as exciting as her first, Roberts continued to see improvement.

Since making lineups, Marsden feels that Roberts has risen to the challenge and exceeded expectations. She has put up consistent numbers for the team and she has also made it so the Red Rocks don’t have a weak-link. Roberts hopes she can continue doing just that in the postseason.

“I’m excited to see where we go,” Roberts said. “At Maryland we didn’t get as high ranking, so being able to go to Nationals and compete for one of the top spots, I think that is what I am looking forward to the most for the rest of the season.”

e.white@dailyutahchronicle.com

@emileewhiteee

Emilee White

Emilee White has been at The Daily Utah Chronicle for over a year, and she is currently the the assistant sports editor. She started her sports writing career with SwimSwam, and she has done an internship with the Deseret News.

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