No. 1 Gym Takes Down Alabama in Front of Record Crowd
Assistant Communications Director
BATON ROUGE- In front of a sold-out, school record 13,729 fans, the No. 1 LSU gymnastics defeated No. 9 Alabama with a season-best score of 197.450 Friday night inside of the Maravich Center.
LSU extended its streak of a meet with a score of 197 to 26 straight, and the Tigers moved to 30-0 inside of the Maravich Center dating back to the start of the 2014 season. With the win, LSU improved to 3-0 overall and 3-0 in the Southeastern Conference. Alabama posted a 196.725 in the meet and falls to 1-2 overall and 1-1 in the conference.
“Everybody played a part in tonight,” head coach D-D Breaux said. “Our village owns what they do and they do it with so much passion. You can’t help but have success when you’re surrounded by that many people. The crowd tonight was incredible and they were so appreciative of every routine from start to finish.”
“The crowd tonight was amazing,” Hambrick said. “I’ve been a part of some of the largest crowds in school history and this crowd was just different. They were incredible. I landed every pass on my floor routine and I felt like I was in Tiger Stadium when it gets loud. It was amazing.”
Sarah Finnegan Wins First Vault Title
Junior Finnegan competed in the second spot of the vault lineup where she notched a season-best 9.90 to win her first career vault title. Julianna Cannamela posted a 9.850 to lead off the meet for the Tigers, and Hambrick also scored a 9.85. Sarah Edwards and Lexie Priessman finished off the first rotation with scores of 9.75 and 9.80, respectively.
Tigers Post Second-Highest Bars Score in School History
The bars squad finished with a 49.625 in the second rotation to set the second-highest score in school history, surpassing the 49.600 that had happened three times in school history: two weeks ago at home against Arkansas, versus Iowa in 2015 and at the Metroplex Challenge in 2014.
Each of the Tigers on bars scored a 9.90 or higher. Five of the six Tigers tied or set season highs and four set or matched career highs. Freshman Sami Durante started things off tying by setting a new career high with a 9.90, and Hambrick followed with a career-best 9.925. Edney posted a 9.90, and Priessman scored a season-best 9.90. Finnegan set a new career-mark with a 9.975 in the anchor spot of bars.
Christina Desiderio and Kennedy Edney Record Team-Best 9.875s on Beam
Edney set a new season high in the third spot with a 9.875, and freshman Desiderio followed with a career-best 9.875. The Tigers also counted a 9.875 from Hambrick, a 9.825 from Erin Macadaeg and a 9.750 from Finnegan on the event.
Floor Closes the Meet with Season-Best 49.475
The Tigers wrapped up the fourth and final rotation with a season-best 49.475 on floor. Freshman Ashlyn Kirby led off floor with a solid 9.85, and Edwards recorded a career-high 9.875. Finnegan set a season-best with a 9.925 in the four spot. Hambrick then followed by tying her career-high score of 9.95. Competing for the first time in the anchor spot, Cannamela shattered her career-high with a 9.875 to secure the win for the Tigers.
LSU travels for the second time this season when the squad goes to Fort Worth, Texas, for the Metroplex Challenge. The Tigers will square off against NC State, Washington and UCLA in the Fort Worth Convention Center Saturday, Jan. 27 at 6:45 p.m. The meet will be available online through FloGymnastics.
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.