(Photo: Nicholas Badders/WCSN)
On Sunday, the Arizona State Gym Devils will take their No. 14 ranking to Morgantown, West Virginia to face the No. 16 Mountaineers.
Both squads performed well in their first meet posting scores of 194.675 and 194.425, respectively. While the Gym Devils utilized that score to grasp victories over two top-25 teams, the Mountaineers fell short to the feet of the Florida Gators who currently are ranked No. 7.
In the opening quad-meet, ASU showed promise. Newcomers Anne Kuhm and Cairo Leonard-Baker provided a spark with a second place finish on bars for Kuhm and a fourth place finish in the all-around for Leonard-Baker. This type of production will be crucial in the effort to push the team to a victory in West Virginia.
While the two squads are close in the overall rankings, their individual events are closely intertwined as well. On the uneven bars it will be a matchup of strength on strength, as it was both teams best event in their first performance. The Gym Devils finished with a 48.850 on bars while the Mountaineers earned a 48.750, good enough for 12th and 13th in the national rankings.
While the battle on bars looks to be even, ASU scored higher than WVU on vault by a decent margin. Vault clocked in as West Virginia’s worst event as they scored a 48.425 while the Gym Devils earned their second best rank on any apparatus, scoring a 48.725.
For the floor exercise, the squads rank 19th and 25th, respectively, with the Gym Devils hosting a slight advantage. Sophomore Jessica Ginn had a lot to do with their success as she earned a career-high 9.825 on the apparatus last meet.
The only event in which West Virginia can claim a higher national ranking than Arizona State going into the meet is balance beam. The Mountaineers scored three-tenths higher than the Gym Devils. ASU will look to improve on beam after having to record a fall in its event total last time out.
From each apparatus to the total score, these two squads are equally matched and should be involved in a competitive meet. The meet is slated to start at 11 a.m.on Sunday, January 14 in Morgantown.