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Gymnastics downs Iowa in surprise ending

staff writer

Published: Saturday, January 11, 2014

Updated: Tuesday, January 14, 2014 00:01

Sarah Landes

Delayne Ripplinger

Junior Sarah Landes celebrates with coaches and teammates during a home meet last season at the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum

The Utah State gymnastics team defeated the Iowa Hawkeyes on Saturday 191.750-191.650 in Iowa City.

The Hawkeyes were up on the Aggies with 191.950 points when they asked for a video review. When the review did not go in their favor, Iowa was forced to take a .300 deduction, giving USU the win.

The victory marks the first season-opening win for the Aggies since 2007. With an overall score of 191.750, USU also notched its highest overall score in a first meet since it scored 191.925 in a loss to Utah in 2012.

Freshman Bailey McIntire made an impression in her first ever collegiate meet, taking second place in the all-around with a score of 38.750. She took home the only event win for the Aggies with her first place floor score of 9.850.

McIntire tied for second place with sophomore teammate Miranda Kerr on vault, both notching scores of 9.775. Junior Page Jones took third place on beam with a score of 9.700 and sophomore McKinzey Martinez tied for second in floor with 9.725.

"I am so proud of the girls. They never gave up. We had our share of struggles, but it's nothing we can't fix," said first-year head coach Nadalie Walsh. "The thing that made me very happy was that they were happy, enjoying themselves and having a good time. They just need to learn how to compete well while having fun. We can only get better from here."

USU notched overall scores of 48.700 on vault, 47.750 on bars, 47.275 on beam and 48.025 on floor. Iowa ended the meet with overall scores of 48.275 on vault, 47.950 on bars, 47.975 on beam and 47.750 on floor.

USU started the meet on the bars and Iowa on vault. Even with strong performances from Jones and McIntire, the Aggies trailed the Hawkeyes 47.700-48.275 after the first rotation.

In the second rotation, USU moved to vault. Led by McIntire and Kerr’s tied second place scores, none of the Aggies scored below a 9.600 on their vaults. This gave USU a score of 48.700, enough to take the lead from Iowa, who had scored a 47.950 on the bars.

The Aggies moved to the floor next, where they notched a 48.025 overall score led by McIntire’s first place score of 9.850. USU continued to hold the lead over Iowa, which scored 47.975 on its beam performance.

Finishing out the meet on the beam, the Aggies had a hard time holding their lead, notching a 47.275 overall punctuated by Landes 9.600 performance.

At the end of regulation, Iowa held the lead with its 47.750 performance on the floor in the fourth rotation, but after the video deduction, the Aggies came away with the win.

USU’s next meet will take place in Cedar City on Jan. 17 when the Aggies will take on in-state rival SUU. The Aggies will return to Logan to host BYU at 7 p.m. Friday, Jan. 24 in the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum.

Twitter: @emily_seamqueen 

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