Go Utes!
Go Utes!
McAllister, Seniors Lead Ute Gymnasts Past Utah State

Stephanie McAllister won the all-around and two events in win over USU.

Stephanie McAllister won the all-around and two events in win over USU.

Feb. 25, 2011

Final Stats

LOGAN, Utah -
The Utah gymnasts brushed aside injuries to beat Utah State 196.550-193.150 and improve to 7-1 on the season. With star all-arounder Corrie Lothrop sidelined with an ankle injury, and vaulter Victoria Shanley scratching in warm-ups with back spasms, the rest of the Utes responded with their best road score of the season.

"This is just a gutty little team," marveled coach Greg Marsden. "They don't give up. Corrie and Victoria were out and other people stepped right in and did a nice job. It wasn't a perfect meet, but I can't be disappointed when I see the amount of heart this group has."

Stephanie McAllister won the all-around with a career-tying 39.475 and also tied for first on vault (9.875) and floor (9.90). The junior, who increased her team-best victory total to nine, got help from some unusual sources.

Competing in the all-around for the first time of her career, senior Jacquelyn Johnson scored a 39.225, while senior Gael Mackie, in her first all-around since 2009, scored a 39.025. The duo was most impressive on the balance beam, where Johnson performed the first beam routine of her career immediately after leadoff "beamer" Fumina Kobayashi fell. Johnson's 9.75 routine set the stage for solid routines from McAllister (9.80), Cortni Beers (9.825) and Mary Beth Lofgren (9.775). The best came last, when Mackie, who fell in three of her previous six beam routines this season (including the last two), popped for a career-best 9.875.



While Johnson and Mackie were making the most of their all-around opportunities, Nansy Damianova also tossed her hat in the ring. The three-event freshman, who earned her first collegiate victories by tying for first with McAllister on vault (9.875) and floor (9.90), also shined in exhibition on beam. Her 9.825 on that event would have given her a 39.425 all-around tally had the score been to count.

The latest show in depth was encouraging to a team that already lost All-America senior Kyndal Robarts to a knee injury five weeks ago. Marsden hopes to have Lothrop and Shanley available next Friday when the Utes host top-ranked Florida in the final home meet of the season. In the meantime, his revised lineup did plenty well on a snowy night in Logan, Utah.

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