No. 13 ASU gymnastics stunned by No. 25 Minnesota in nail-biting finish

The Sun Devils led through three rotations before a remarkable performance by the Golden Gophers cost ASU the win

The No. 13 ASU women’s gymnastics team traveled up to the frigid city of Minneapolis, Minn. to take on the No. 25 Golden Gophers on Saturday. 

The Sun Devils came into the weekend ranked No. 13 after a monumental win over in-state rival Arizona, however would not be able sustain that winning streak, falling to the Golden Gophers 196.675-196.525.

The afternoon began on bars for the Sun Devils. Sophomore Ashley Szafranski led the way for the Devils firing off a powerful double layout dismount earning her a career high 9.900. She was followed close behind by junior Anne Kuhm and freshman Cairo Leonard-Baker, both of whom scored 9.875. 

Following an excellent first rotation, the Sun Devils moved to the vault. This rotation marked a career high for sophomore Jessica Ginn, who led the way for the Sun Devils with a 9.825. She was followed close behind by Leonard-Baker who earned a 9.800 with her yurchenko full. A powerful vault by junior Morgan Wilson earned her a 9.775 and pushed the Sun Devils to a close lead over the Gophers 98.200-98.175.

Next for the Sun Devils was the floor rotation. They began the rotation with an exciting performance by junior Justine Callis. Callis’ upbeat performance earned her a season-high 9.800. Two Sun Devils led the way with Kuhm and junior Kaitlyn Szafranski, each earning a 9.875 score. Szafranski’s score being a career high. 

As the moved to the final rotation, the Golden Gophers and the Sun Devils were neck and neck. The Devils who have struggled some on beam throughout the season had a solid performance with Callis leading the way with a 9.850. She was followed close behind by Leonard-Baker, Wilson and Ashley Szafranski all who earned 9.825. Their performances however would not be enough to stop the Golden Gophers from staging a remarkable comeback.

While on floor, the Golden Gophers had a remarkable performance. Senior Ciara Gardner, freshman Lexy Ramler and sophomore Paige Williams earned 9.900’s with their exceptional performances on their team's senior night. Their efforts and willingness to push forward against tough competition like the Sun Devils, earned them a 196.675-196.525 victory.

The Sun Devils hope to get back on track as they travel to Norman, Okla. for a quad-meet against Oklahoma, Denver and Arkansas on Friday at 5:45 MST.


Reach the reporter at klbroder@asu.edu or follow @KellyBSays on Twitter. 

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