Low scores taint Red Rocks’ 196.050 – 194.850 victory over Michigan

Posted at 6:21 PM, Feb 17, 2012
and last updated 2012-02-28 12:45:26-05

Low scores throughout the night kept the top-ranked University of Utah gymnastics team to a disappointing 196.050 in their victory over number 21 Michigan.

The Red Rocks were in Ann Arbor in their second straight away meet. Stumbles throughout the night and falls on floor in their 196.150 meet against Arizona State last Sunday kept the Utes number one this week by a narrow margin over Florida, but the Red Rocks saw low scores on most routines Friday, holding them to their lowest score of the season since their 196.025 home opener against UCLA in January.

Utah Coach Greg Marsden lamented the famously low-scoring Michigan judges after the meet, saying that those scores were the only negative in an otherwise great meet Friday.

“The score does not reflect what a good meet we had. For instance, we had our best bar set of the season and received our lowest score,” Marsden said. “I’m not saying these judges are doing it wrong and other judges in the country are doing it right. It could be the other way around. The problem is there needs to be consistency nationwide. I feel bad for Michigan because scores count toward seeding into the postseason and it’s not fair to either team.”

No gymnast scored above a 9.80, despite strong routines and stuck landings. Both Stephanie McAllister and Corrie Lothrop scored a 9.80, followed by 9.775s by Kassandra Lopez and Georgia Dabritz. Utah finished with a 48.850, their lowest score of the season since a 48.450 in their season opener against UCLA, in which Utah had to count two mediocre routines after a fall from Dabritz.

Utah saw its highest score of the night with a 49.20 on the vault, highlighted by 9.90s from Dabritz and Kailah Delaney. Steps on landings kept the rest of the scores in the 9.70s and low 9.80s from the rest of the Red Rocks.

Utah, who sits atop the rankings on floor, overcame some messy landings on tumbling passes to finish with a 49.10. Kyndal Robarts pulled herself out of the lineup, allowing Tory Wilson her first shot at floor, though Wilson’s 9.625 was the lowest score for the Utes and dropped her mark. Utah got 9.85s from leadoff performer Becky Tutka, Corrie Lothrop and Stephanie McAllister.

Wobbles early in the beam rotation for the Red Rocks had their standing as top-ranked in the nation at risk, but solid routines from the last four gymnasts, including a 9.850 from Cortni Beers, allowed Utah to finish witha  48.90.

Utah (4-1) handed Michigan (6-2) their first home loss of the season with the 196.050 – 194.850 final score. Joanna Sampson topped the all-around scores with a 39.250. Lothrop, who had won the all-around in her last three meets, came in second with a 39.175. McAllister finished with a 39.050.

The Utes welcome Stanford next Friday in the Huntsman Center in their first-ever Pac-12 home meet.

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