Jan. 25, 2018
DENVER - The No. 13-ranked University of Denver women's gymnastics team will host its annual Porter Hospital Pink Night meet on Saturday, January 27, at 6 p.m. in Hamilton Gymnasium. Joining Denver will be Utah State.
PIONEERS' PINK NIGHT
Saturday's meet is Denver's annual Porter Hospital Pink Night. To raise breast cancer awareness, DU's student-athletes and coaches will wear pink during the meet, and fans are invited to do the same.
HOME SWEET HAMILTON
After opening the 2018 home slate in front of a record crowd in Magness Arena, Denver will host its upcoming meets in Hamilton Gymnasium. DU is home for the next three weekends and will host all three meets on Saturdays at 6 p.m. in Hamilton.
In 2017, three Pioneer home meets were hosted in Hamilton Gymnasium. The last meet DU hosted in Hamilton was in front of a sold-out crowd on January 18, 2017, where Denver tied the sixth-best score in program history (197.150) and then-freshman Maddie Karr (Stillwater, Minn.) earned a perfect 10.0 on vault. The Pioneers swept the event titles in that meet.
JANUARY RECORDS SET
With one meet to go, Denver has tallied some of the program's top scores for the month of January. In the home opener on January 14, DU posted the second-highest January team score in program history (196.800), less than one tenth off the top score (196.875 earned on January 20, 2017).
Also during the January 14 meet, the Pioneers set a new school record for the highest beam score earned in January with a 49.325--which also ties the fifth-best mark all-time on the event. DU's 49.450 on floor on January 14 is the third-highest January floor score as well.
WHAT TO WATCH FOR
Vault: DU continues to compete with just five competitors on vault, led by 10.0 start values from Karr and freshman Lynnzee Brown (Kansas City, Mo.). Senior Nikole Addison (Fort Myers, Fla.) scored a 9.900--from a 9.950 start value--last weekend to win the first vault title of her career. Junior Diana Chesnok (Charlotte, N.C.) and freshman Mia Sundstrom (Boulder, Colo.) have been consistent in their vaults all season long.
Bars: Three Pioneers have had DU's top bars score in each of the team's first three meets this season. Karr won her first-ever bars title against Boise State with a career high-tying 9.900. Chesnok, too, tied her career high on bars (9.925) on January 14 to win the title. Brown and Karr earned matching scores to lead the team in the season opener. Junior Claire Kern (Charlotte, N.C.) and Sundstrom have both competed in every meet on bars this year, Kern hitting all three routines and Sundstrom setting a personal best last weekend.
Beam: As is the case on bars, three Pioneers have claimed the team's top beam score in each meet this season. Karr took the win with a 9.900 in the season opener while junior Kaitlyn Schou (Orlando, Fla.) tied the fifth-best score in program history with a 9.950 on January 14. Sundstrom had DU's top mark last Friday. Addison, Chesnok and Brown have completed DU's beam line-up in each meet this year.
Floor: Denver again competed five-up, five-count on floor against Boise State. For the second time this season, Brown led the Pioneers in scoring and won the event title with a 9.900 performance. Karr and Schou had DU's next-highest scores last meet and completed a sweep of the podium. Four Pioneers have score of at least 9.900 on floor so far this season: Addison, Brown, Karr and Sundstrom.
EYE ON THE RANKINGS
Denver holds the No. 13 spot in this week's national rankings and retains top-15 rankings on three events. DU is No. 5 in the nation on vault with a 49.117 average despite only competing with five gymnasts all season. On beam, Denver is tied for No. 6 (49.142) and is tied for No. 13 on floor (49.042).
Two Pioneers are ranked in the all-around: Brown at No. 14 (39.333) and Karr tied for No. 25 (39.208). Brown is also tied for No. 20 on vault (9.867) while Karr is tied for No. 14 on beam (9.875).
Schou continues to hold a national ranking on beam, coming in tied for No. 12 (9.883) this week.
LAST TIME OUT
DU finished second in the quad meet at Boise State on January 19 with a team score of 195.050. Denver gymnasts claimed four of the five individual titles with Brown winning the all-around for the second consecutive meet. She also took home the floor title.
Two Denver student-athletes also claimed the first titles of their career on an event: Addison on vault and Karr on bars. Both did so by either setting or tying their personal bests on their respective event.
ABOUT UTAH STATE
The Aggies hosted their season opener on January 19, finishing in first with a 195.450 against San Jose State and Sacramento State. Keri Peel and Madison Ward tied for the bars title, and Autumn DeHarde and Faith Leary shared the floor title.
Four different athletes lead USU's average scoring on each of the four events this season. Ward is the team's top scorer on vault; Jazmyn Estrella leads on bars; Emily Briones leads on beam; and Elle Golison leads on floor.
Denver and Utah State have met 47 times previously including in back-to-back weeks in 2016. Their last meeting was February 12, 2016, at the Perfect 10 Challenge in Oklahoma City where DU topped USU 196.000-195.100.
Utah State last traveled to Denver the week prior to the Perfect 10 Challenge, visiting on January 6, 2016. DU also won that match-up 196.675-195.000.
The teams spent four years together in the same conference. In 2012 and 2013, both were members of the Western Athletic Conference (WAC), and in 2014 and 2015, they were both in the Mountain Rim Gymnastics Conference (MRGC). Denver became an affiliate member of the Big 12 Conference in 2016 while Utah State remains in the MRGC.
PIONEER MOVEMENT: Fans interested in making a donation to the gymnastics program can do so by clicking here. Your contribution will make a direct impact on the success of YOUR Pioneers. Thank you in advance for your unwavering support of our student-athletes and their quest for excellence.
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