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USU falls to SJSU on road

staff writer

Published: Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Updated: Tuesday, February 19, 2013 13:02


FRESHMAN DESTINY EZELL competes on the vault during the Aggies’ home meet against Air Force on Feb. 8. DELAYNE LOCKE photo


USU’s gymnastics team finished second with a score of 193.225 in a tri-meet against San Jose State and Brown University over the weekend.

“Well, we started off good,” said head coach Jeff Richards. “Our next two events were not so great. We finished really strong on vault.”

The Aggies scored a 48.625 on bars for their first event and stumbled a bit for the next two events, scoring 47.700 in floor exercise and 48.075 on beam. The girls wrapped up the meet with a strong finishing vaulting score of 48.825.

“We started out really well on the first two events,” said freshman Stefanie Daley. “Actually, we did really well on bars and ended well on vault and then beam and floor were pretty shaky. That’s where we had our falls. That’s where most of our mistakes were.”

Two gymnasts from USU competed in the all-around. Junior Paige Jones grabbed third place and sophomore Sarah Landes placed fourth.

Landes had her career-high vault score of 9.875. Freshman Kinzey Martinez tied for second with a score of 9.825 and took home her fourth event title.

Martinez scored a 9.725 on beam with Michelle Yasukochi matching her score.

Martinez said beam was a little shaky for the team, but she and some other girls competed in this event for the first time.

“Beam has somewhat been our nemesis,” Richards said. “Our beam team is a good beam team. We added Kenzie Martinez back to our beam lineup and that really helped us out this weekend. We’re gonna run some lineups and see if we can hit all in a row.”

The floor exercise routines also posed a bit of a problem for the gymnasts. Hayley Sanzotti took a hard fall and injured both of her knees, bringing her score down to a 8.925.

“Hayley missed her second pass and hyperextended both of her knees,” Richards said. “She’ll be out, but we’ve got two kids that could step in and do that for us.”

Richards thinks the reason the floor exercise had some bumps is because of injuries.

“Floor we’re quite good at, but we’ve been nursing a few injuries so it’s been touch and go,” Richards said.

Friday posed a problem for other gymnasts with injuries as well.

In addition to Sanzotti’s new injury with her knees, Martinez has been dealing with a herniated disk in her back.

“They told me as long as I do gymnastics, my back isn’t going to heal,” Martinez said. “So it’s just a matter of competing and dealing with the pain. They told me something I can do is work through the pain.”

Despite the pain, Martinez still performed well with her career-best and top score for the Aggies on bars with a 9.875. She tied for second on vault and scored a 9.725 on beam.

Richards said he hopes to run Martinez in three events for their next meet and add the fourth event in two weeks, putting her back in the all-around competition.

Though she isn’t nursing a painful injury, Daley felt out of her element during the tri-meet.

“I wasn’t feeling too good before the meet.” Daley said. “I was sick, so I was a little worried. I knew that my team needed me and I wanted to perform well for them. I had to put all of my energy into that one beam routine and that’s what I did and it turned out well.”

Daley finished with the top USU beam score of 9.850.

The Aggies will travel to Denver on Feb. 23 to compete against Rutgers and Denver University at 7 p.m.



twitter: @daniellekmanley

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