ASU gymnastics looks to build on second-place finish

After a second-place finish in its first meet of the season, the ASU gymnastics team is looking to build upon that as it heads to Seattle for a quad-meet against Washington, UC Davis and San Jose State.

The Sun Devils performed well in their first two events Saturday, scoring a 49.05 on vault a feat they only accomplished once in the 2013 season and a 48.8 on uneven bars. However, falls on the balance beam and sloppy steps on floor routines hurt the Sun Devils as they fell to second overall.

Those mistakes won’t help ASU if it wants to take first on Saturday night. Washington came into the season ranked No. 10 in the nation and scored an impressive 195.025 in its first meet of the season. San Jose State took first place in the tri-meet in Tempe, and UC Davis scored a 193.45 in its first meet of the season.

Still, junior Natasha Sundby and the Sun Devils are doing their best to not worry about the other teams in the meet.

“We just have to focus on our own team. It’s not necessarily trying to beat our competition, but we just want to beat ourselves from last year,” Sundby said.

The team has benefited from strong performances from freshmen Beka Conrad and Gilly Hogue, as Conrad scored a 9.825 on bars and Hogue a 9.85 on vault. Assistant coach Tom Ward called Conrad the “MVP” of the tri-meet. The Sun Devils will look to them for strong outings in Seattle.

Senior Samantha Seaman has also shown progress in practice, and performed well in ASU’s first meet. Seaman suffered a torn ligament last season and wasn’t able to return until regionals in Corvallis, Ore. This year, she’s fully healed and has shown it, scoring a 9.775 on vault and a 9.675 on floor.

“Sammie’s doing a great job leading the team,” Ward said. “We’re just trying to send her out on the best year of her career.”

The meet starts at 6 p.m. MST.

 

Reach the reporter at stheodor@asu.edu or follow him on Twitter @shane_writes