The No. 4 University of Utah Red Rocks Gymnastics team is headed into a loaded weekend of competition. The team will compete in one quad meet and one dual meet in a matter of four days. To kick things off, the team will compete in the GymQuarters Invitational in St. Charles, Missouri, on Friday, Feb. 15. The team will face some of the strongest teams in the country at this meet, including No. 5 Louisiana State University (LSU) (3-3, 1-3 SEC), No. 15 Missouri (4-6, 1-4 SEC) and Stanford (5-4, 0-4 Pac-12). After competing in Missouri, the team will head back across the country to Palo Alto, California, to take on Stanford in a dual meet on Monday, Feb. 18.
Scouting the Utes:
The Red Rocks are coming off of an impressive win against California, 197.150-196.225, to stay unbeaten on the season. With last week’s win, the team made it into uncharted territory, this year’s team has scored 197 points or more in each of their first six meets, which is a school record.
The team is also nationally ranked on certain events. The team is holding strong at No. 2 and No. 4 on the vault and the floor events, respectively.
At the individual level, even though she has not competed in the All Around category in the last two weeks, MyKayla Skinner is ranked fourth in the nation. Joining her in the rankings is MaKenna Merrell-Giles, who is ranked 12th.
Skinner and Merrell-Giles are also ranked on the vault at second and sixth on the list. Macey Roberts is also ranked 20th on the event. Rounding out the rankings on this event is Kari Lee, who is tied for 22nd in the nation.
Skinner is the lone Ute ranked on the bars this week, coming in at ninth place.
Skinner and Merrell-Giles are ranked on the floor as well, tied for ninth and 12th on the apparatus.
The Red Rocks are hoping to snap their streak against LSU this week. The Red Rocks have lost the last two meetings against the Tigers, most recently last season at the NCAA National Championship, 196.9000-197.8375. Utah leads the series between the two schools (32-4).
LSU is coming off a loss against No. 13 Kentucky, 197.150-196.025. Other notable losses include No. 2 Florida and No. 11 Auburn. The Tigers have had some big wins this season, however, including No. 14 Cal and No. 9 Alabama.
Just like Utah, this is LSU’s first and only quad meet of the regular season.
The Tigers are coming off a loss against No. 7 Georgia last week, 196.300-195.900. They started the season strong taking down nationally ranked opponents Arizona State and Minnesota in the Arizona State Quad the first week of the season. Since then, it has been a bumpy road for the Tigers as they have dropped four meets to No. 2 Florida, No. 11 Auburn, No. 1 Oklahoma and No. 6 Denver.
The Red Rocks are 4-0 against Missouri with their last victory coming at the 2011 NCAA Regional competition 196.475-194.175.
The Cardinal fell out of the Top 25 heading into this week and are currently suffering from a four-meet losing streak with the most recent loss coming against Arizona State 196.375-195.000.
The Cardinal has yet to win a meet in the Pac-12.
The Red Rocks are 33-6 against Stanford. The last loss the Red Rocks had at the hands of Stanford was February 2014 in Palo Alto. In the most recent meeting, the Red Rocks defeated Stanford in the NCAA Regional Competition last season scoring 197.475-195.600.
Quick turn around:
In a matter of nine days, the Red Rocks will have competed in 12 rotations of gymnastics. After coming home from Palo Alto, the team will have four days to prepare to take on the defending National Champions UCLA in a meet for the ages on Feb. 23.
Where to watch:
There will be no televised broadcast of the meet on Friday, but the dual meet against Stanford will be televised on the Pac-12 Network. There will be live scores available for both meets on utahutes.com