U of U gymnastics team prepares for new season

Posted at 9:22 PM, Jan 08, 2013
and last updated 2013-01-08 23:22:17-05

SALT LAKE CITY - The University of Utah gymnastics team will start off their new season ranked fifth in the nation.

Their new season begins on Saturday against UCLA, which is ranked second.

"We always just get thrown right into it and, you know, that can be a good thing or a bad thing. And we're a team that likes to treat it like it's a good thing and it's a challenge," said Carrie Lothrop, Utah junior gymnast.

Head coach Greg Marsden told FOX 13  the absence of seniors on the team this year changes their dynamics.

"The thing that is different is many of them have not played the roles that they're going to have to play this year. We had three outstanding seniors, so we've got people that are going to have to step into those roles and get comfortable very fast," Marsden said.

The team is expected to compete for a national title on a yearly basis, so they're already familiar with dealing with pressure.

"I put a lot of pressure on myself. I know the coaches don't expect us to really do that, but I think we all do," said Georgia Dabritz, Utah sophomore gymnast. "Even with just one year, I still get nervous and I'll be nervous even 'til my senior year, but it's just something you have to learn to handle."

Red Rocks fans will have to wait until Saturday, January 19 to see them compete in Salt Lake City. That will be a four-team meet that includes Oregon State, West Virginia and Southern Utah.