Ashley Postell scored a perfect 10.0 on the vault.
Feb. 22, 2008
SALT LAKE CITY -
Any fears of Utah looking ahead to Sunday's meet at UCLA were put to rest quickly in the Huntsman Center Friday. Utah scored a 197.20 and manhandled out-matched Southern Utah (193.100) and Utah State (189.650). The drubbing began immediately, sparked by Kristina Baskett and Ashley Postell scoring a 9.975 and 10.0 on the vault. The crowd of 12,963 went wild with delight after the two routines and never settled down.
Postell - all but unbeatable in Utah's first seven meets - won every event and the all-around (tying for first on bars with Baskett). Postell's winning all-around score of 39.75 is her second best this year and tied for the sixth best in school history. She improved to 6-0 in the all-around this year and has won her last seven all-arounds dating back to last April's Super Six competition. She also moved her season win streak to 7-0 on the beam and to 8-0 including last year's NCAA beam title. Of course, Postell's 10.0 on the vault was good for first, and she concluded Utah's routines with a winning 9.925 on the floor.
Postell increased her school record all-around win total to 25 and now has 98 career victories to put her within site of school record-holder Theresa Kulikowski (112 from 1999-2003). She has done 26 routines without a fall this season and has 44 straight made routines dating back to last year. The school record for routines without a fall is 64 by Suzanne Metz (1994-95).
Postell needed every tenth she could get to beat teammates Baskett (39.525) and Daria Bijak (39.225). Every Ute got into the act, led by Bijak's career-best 9.925 on beam, and Baskett's 9.975 on vault and 9.90 on floor. Utah "hit" all 24 routines to count, as well as all four of its exhibition routines.
On the first rotation, Utah's first four gymnasts contributed good vaults, marred only by a step on the landing. The steps stopped with vaulter No. 5, when Baskett soared high and landed with a stick. Her career-tying 9.975 score had the big crowd rumbling in anticipation of Postell's turn. And Postell didn't disappoint, scoring her second 10.0 on vault of the season. In the last four meets (two home, two on the road), she has scored two 10.0's a 9.975 and a 9.925. Baskett has certainly been a great lead-in for Postell in the last four meets, scoring a 9.925, 9.85, 9.925 and 9.975.
Next up, leadoff beamer Jamie Deetscreek snapped out of the funk that caused her to fall in the two previous meets and posted a 9.825. Deetscreek getting back in the groove made for a loose, confident set by the five who followed, with only Baskett (9.775) scoring lower than a 9.80. Bijak set a career-high with a 9.925 from the No. 5 spot and Postell's routine earned the nation's No. 1 ranked beam worker a 9.95. A season-tying 49.325 on the event brought Utah's three event score to a 147.975. Far behind were SUU (145.225) and USU (141.300).
The Utes stayed loose, but the scoring was tight on their final rotation. Bijak's unique tumbling and sky high leaps made for an eye-popping opener, but received only a 9.775. Katie Kivisto followed with an identical 9.775, before Beth Rizzo impressed her way to a 9.85. Kyndal Robarts went next with a routine featuring a big double Arabian on the first pass and double pike last element. It, too received a 9.775. Baskett upped the ante, nailing her full-in start and double pike finish, and her beautiful set earned a 9.90. Postell opened with a good looking double Arabian and finished Utah's night with a 9.925.
The 8-0 Utes fly to UCLA tomorrow for a Sunday meet with 11-0 and No. 9 ranked UCLA.