No. 5 Red Rocks Set for Senior Day versus No. 20 Utah State


University of Utah juinor Crystal Isa in a Gymnastics meet vs. the University of California at the Jon M. Huntsman Center in Salt Lake City, Utah on Friday, Feb. 26, 2021. (Photo by Kevin Cody | The Daily Utah Chronicle)

By Sammy Mora, Sports Editor


After posting an impressive road score last week, the No. 5 University of Utah Red Rocks gymnastics team is back home to close out the regular season as they host No. 20 Utah State. This will be the second meeting between these two teams this season. It will also be senior night for the Red Rocks.

Scouting the No. 5 Red Rocks 

Record: 9-1, 6-0 Pac-12 

Last meet: W vs Oregon State, 197.575-196.425

National Qualifying Score: 197.469

The Red Rocks will be finishing off their regular season on their home floor after posting a season-high score at Oregon State last week. The performance comes on the back of one of the best beam rotations of the season for the Red Rocks where they posted a season-high score of 49.600 to clinch the win for the team. They were just 0.025 of a point away from tying their season-high on the floor in the victory as well.

Maile O’Keefe had one of her best nights as a Red Rock last Friday, scoring a 9.900 or above on every single event on the night. She set a new career-high in the all-around in Corvallis with a 39.725. Her 9.900 on vault tied her career-best while the 9.950 she put up on bars was enough to set a new career-best.

O’Keefe wasn’t the lone Red Rock to set a new career-best in the win. Jaedyn Rucker’s 9.90 on vault set a new career-best for the sophomore.

In the rankings, the Red Rocks fell to No. 5 this week due to the rest of the scores posted by teams across the country. O’Keefe maintained her spot as the No. 1 beam worker in the country. She is now No. 9 in the country in the all-around and is tied for No. 23 on the bars with teammate Cristal Isa. Abby Paulson is tied No. 4 in the country on the beam. Alexia Burch is ranked No. 8 on the vault while Sydney Soloski is tied for No. 13 on the floor. Along with being ranked on the bars, Isa is tied for No. 17 on the beam.

At the event level, all events rank in the top 15. Beam holds strong at No. 3, floor and vault are both ranked No. 6 and bars is ranked No. 15.

Scouting the No. 20 Aggies

Record: 2-9, 2-7 MRGC

Last meet: L vs Denver 196.775-197.650, W vs Southern Utah 196.775-195.125

National Qualifying Score: 196.463

The Aggies are coming off a split at the tri-meet versus Denver and Southern Utah last week and scoring a season-high score in the process. Leighton Varnadore led the team in the meet with a season-high score of 39.325 in the all-around.

The Aggies rank No. 19 on the vault, No. 28 on the bars, No. 14 on the beam and No. 27 on the floor. Autumn DeHarde ranks No. 17 on the beam and is the highest-ranked Aggie on all events.

How to Support the Red Rocks

This senior day meet is set for Friday, March 12 at 7 p.m. MST at the Jon M. Huntsman Center. The meet will be streamed on a Utah-produced live stream and will be broadcast on the Home of the Utes ESPN 700 with Mike Lageschulte and Kyndal Pond on the call. 

After this week the Red Rocks will turn their focus to the postseason. Things will kick off with the Pac-12 Championship which is set for Saturday, March 21 and will be split into two sessions.


[email protected]