If you like uneven bars, the No. 6 Gym Dogs‚Äô 197.650-195.675 win over Arkansas on Saturday was the meet for you.
Georgia received scores of 9.9 or higher from all six of its competitors in the event, leading the Gym Dogs in their defeat of conference foe Arkansas. A score of 49.675 on bars gave Georgia its highest score in the event since 1999 and tied for the seventh highest bars score in school history. The performance left Georgia head coach Danna Durante searching for words.
‚ÄúI don‚Äôt know what to say,‚Äù she said. ‚ÄúI mean, they just keep getting better and I didn‚Äôt think that was really possible.‚Äù
Georgia started off Saturday‚Äôs meet with a 49.375 on vault, thanks in part to the Gym Dogs‚Äô top performer in the opening event, Lindsey Cheek. Cheek notched a 9.975 on vault, the highest vault score of the day, to help her team to its 49.375-49.225 lead over Arkansas following the first rotation.
As Arkansas and Georgia traded places, Brandie Jay set the tone for the Gym Dogs on bars. A boisterous Stegeman crowd erupted as the sophomore from Fort Collins, Colo. opened the event with a 9.9.
Hires kept Georgia‚Äôs momentum going with a 9.925 to up the ante.
The Gym Dogs couldn‚Äôt seem to falter on the bars as Kiera Brown added a 9.9 of her own, followed by 9.5s from Cheek, Brittany Rogers and Chelsea Davis.
‚ÄúI‚Äôm excited that week in and week out we can put that on the competition floor and do exactly what we do in practice,‚Äù Cheek said.
Georgia held a 99.050-98.175 lead over the visiting Gym‚ÄôBacks at the halfway point.
Sophomore Mary Beth Box started Georgia out with a 9.85 on the balance beam, while a stumble in Sarah Persinger‚Äôs routine left her with an 8.975. Rogers, a sophomore from Vancouver, British Columbia, however, picked the Gym Dogs up with a 9.775 to follow.
Cheek finished strong in her final event, scoring a 9.95 with her coveted balance beam routine ‚Äî always a fan favorite. Kaylan Earls may have gotten the largest applause after her balance beam routine earned her a 9.95.
‚ÄúI was just very confident and ready to go out there and have fun,‚Äù Earls said. ‚ÄúI had to go out there and bring some noise.‚Äù
Georgia scored a 49.35 on beam to hold a 148.400-147.225 lead heading into its final event, the floor routine.
‚ÄúIt feels amazing for me and Cheek to go out there and show that leadership and finish on beam strong,‚Äù Earls said. ‚ÄúWe just go out there and have a good time and instill confidence in our teammates.‚Äù
Freshman and Athens Christian alumna Morgan Reynolds set the tone for Georgia in the floor routine with a 9.8 to open the event, while Box and Earls both led the Gym Dogs in the event with scores of 9.9 a piece.
Georgia‚Äôs score of 197.650 on Saturday marked its highest of the season.
Georgia will be back in action next Saturday against Denver at 4 p.m. at Stegeman Coliseum.