Gym Wraps Up Three Meets in Eight Days at Auburn
Assistant Communications Director
AUBURN, Ala. – The second-ranked LSU gymnastics team continues its quest for the first Southeastern Conference regular season championship against No. 14 Auburn (0-8, 0-5 SEC) in a nationally-televised meet at 7:30 p.m. CT Friday inside Auburn Arena.
With a win on Friday, the Tigers (10-1, 5-0) would hold at least a share of the regular season championship with the chance to win it outright in the final conference meet on March 5 against Florida. The meet marks the 10th ranked opponent LSU has faced this season.
The top-25 showdown will be televised live on the SEC Network. Bart Conner, Kathy Johnson Clarke and Laura Rutledge will have the call in what will be LSU’s fourth meet on live television. The Tigers are looking to remain undefeated in 2017 and continue a streak of meet with a team score of 197 or better.
DD Previews the Meet
“The team grew a lot last weekend and we saw a lot of strong performances,” head coach D-D Breaux said. “Auburn is traditionally a difficult environment with the student practically on the floor. We know anytime we face an opponent, especially on the road, that they are going to bring their best performance out.”
Last Time Out
The LSU gymnastics team improved to 10-1 on the 2017 season after wins over No. 20 George Washington and No. 22 Iowa Sunday afternoon. The squad posted a season-high score of 197.975 for the fifth-highest team score in school history. With the victories, LSU moved to 26-0 inside the PMAC since 2014. In the meet, 10 gymnasts tied or set new career highs.
Freshman Kennedi Edney captured the vault title with a 9.95. Lexie Priessman won her fourth career bars tittle with a 9.95. Sarah Finnegan earned a 9.95 on beam and McKenna Kelley closed out the afternoon with a 9.975 on floor.
Tigers in the National Rankings
LSU owns the No. 2 spot in the initial Regional Qualifying Score (RQS) released Monday. The vault, bars, beam and floor teams also rank No. 2 in the nation on the events. Individual Rankings: Ashleigh Gnat: 2nd VT, 2nd FX, 6th BB; Kennedi Edney: 6th VT, 6th UB; Sydney Ewing: 14th FX, 20th VT; Lexie Priessman 6th UB, 21st VT; Myia Hambrick: 10th BB, 18th UB; Sarah Finnegan: 21st BB; Erin Macadaeg: 15th BB; Shae Zamardi: 14th FX; McKenna Kelley: 14th FX
A Look at Auburn
Despite being winless overall, Auburn owns the second-toughest schedule in the country and ranks No. 14 overall in the RQS with a high score of 197.450. The Tigers rank in the top-25 nationally on all four events. MJ Rott and Gracie Day rank No. 33 and No. 38 respectively on vault. On bars, Emma Engler ranks No. 33 and Day ranks No. 40.
Series Record Between LSU and Auburn
LSU owns an all-time record of 74-15 over Auburn in a series that dates back to 1978. The Tigers have only competed at Auburn 17 times over the years and own a record of 11-6 on the road. The third-highest score in school history saw LSU post a score of 197.825 in a win over Auburn. The two teams also met at the SEC Championship and NCAA Championships where LSU took a pair of wins.
Edney, Gnat Earn SEC Weekly Honors after Double Weekend
Edney was named the SEC Freshman of the Weekend and Gnat earned SEC Specialist of the Week honors after their performance against the nation’s best. The duo combined to post 11 of 12 routines with scores of 9.90 or better over the weekend against five ranked teams
Fans can follow the Tigers on the team’s social media channels: @LSUgym on Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat, www.Facebook.com/lsugym and at YouTube.com/lsugymnastics.