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Gymnastics to Face Tough Competition at Metroplex
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Published: January 25, 2013, 01:57 PM (CT)
by Jake Terry (@LSUjake), Associate SID

FORT WORTH, Texas - The LSU gymnastics team begins the second leg of a four-meet road swing when the Tigers compete at the Metroplex Challenge at 7 p.m. CT Saturday in the Fort Worth Convention Center.

The seventh-ranked Tigers will square off against No. 2 Oklahoma, No. 9 Georgia, No. 16 Oregon State and Washington, and live audio will be available free of charge inside the Geaux Zone at www.LSUsports.net/live starting at 6:55 p.m. Fans can listen to Mike Smith call all the action alongside Shelby Prunty.

The meet will be held on a podium with the apparatuses raised several feet off the ground on platforms like the set up at the SEC Championship and NCAA Championships.

"This will be a fantastic meet with a lot of great competitors on the floor at the same time," LSU head coach D-D Breaux said. "To have a competition like the Metroplex Challenge as our fourth meet of the season where we face such high quality opponents on a podium in front of a great crowd at a neutral site is a pivotal opportunity for us to solidify our lineups and show our toughness."

LSU (2-1) will open the meet on bars and rotate to beam, floor, and vault before finishing the contest on a bye. Oklahoma will start on vault while Georgia will begin on beam, Oregon State will open on floor and Washington will start on a bye.

LSU enters the meet looking for a solid road score after the Tigers posted a 195.525 last week at No. 5 Alabama, and the team is hoping to use a great week of practice as a spring board into Saturday's meet.

"We trained hard this week and demanded excellence at practice, and the kids really responded well," Breaux said. "We saw a fierce, competitive nature from them, and we need to carry that toughness to the meet against some great opponents."

The Tigers will bring in the No. 3 ranked vault and floor lineups with averages above 49.300 on both events, and LSU also ranks ninth on beam with a 48.917 average.

Three LSU gymnasts are ranked as Rheagan Courville is No. 7 on floor, No. 15 on vault and No. 18 in both the beam and all-around standings. Sarie Morrison is No. 8 on bars and No. 15 on vault, and Lloimincia Hall is the highest-ranked Tiger at No. 3 on floor.

Oklahoma (3-0) enters the meet coming off a season-best 197.325 score in a win against No. 11 Denver last Friday. Three Sooners rank among the top 15 nationally in the all-around with junior Taylor Spears at No. 8, sophomore Erica Brewer at No. 9 and senior Brie Olson at No. 12.

Georgia (3-1) is fresh off a 197.000 score in a win at home against No. 10 Stanford on Monday. The GymDogs have a gymnast ranked in the top 25 on vault, bars and beam with sophomore Chelsea Davis leading the way at No. 4 on bars with a 9.892 average.

Oregon State (3-3) enters the meet after scoring a season-high 195.950 last Friday at No. 8 Utah, and the Beavers are led by senior Makayla Stambaugh who posted a season-best 39.425 in the all-around against the Utes.

Washington (3-1) ranks No. 24 on vault and beam entering the competition. Senior Lauren Rogers leads the squad with a 9.875 average to rank 18th on vault.

Live stats should be available at www.metroplexchallenge.com/results, and fans can also receive score updates by following LSU gymnastics on www.Facebook.com/lsugym and on Twitter @LSUgym. 

 

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