ASU gymnastics defeats Pittsburgh on senior day

ASU gymnastics scored above a 49.000 on vault for the seventh consecutive meet

The Sun Devils extended their win streak to three meets as they defeated Pittsburgh 196.825-196.200 on senior day.

ASU(7-6-1, 3-2-1 Pac-12) got out to a quick lead fueled by freshman Gracie Reeves and her career-high 9.925 on vault. Reeves’ 9.925 is the highest vault score from an ASU gymnast since 2009. 

The Sun Devils also scored a 49.075 and extended their streak of scoring above a 49.000 on vault to seven consecutive meets.

But Pitt (7-7) was not far behind as they scored a 48.975 on bars, their highest team score on bars this season. Senior Rachel Dugan and junior Haley Brechwald both set season-high 9.800s while freshman Ciara Ward tied her career-high 9.825.

In the second rotation, ASU did not slow down as they scored a season-best 49.400 on bars. Freshman Juliette Boyer, freshman Isabel Redmond, graduate student Morgan Wilson and Reeves al set or tied career-highs in the event. 

Junior Cairo Leonard-Baker scored a 9.900, her fifth score of a 9.900 or better on bars for the 2019-20 season. 

Once again, the Panthers would not go down without a fight as they scored a school record 49.325 on vault. Junior Jordan Ceccarini tied her career-high with a 9.800 and senior Alecia Petrikis and senior Deven Herbine both notched 9.925 career-highs.

In the third rotation Wilson continued her stunning senior day performance with a 9.850 on beam. 

Wilson believes the key to her and her team's performance in tonight's victory was having fun. She said, when they have fun, they do their best.

"We've trusted ourselves up to this point and we were just rolling," Wilson said. "We knew we could do it so we didn't have to worry or stress about hitting our routines. We were able to have fun."

Redmond also continued her breakout day with a 9.850 on beam for her second career-high of the day. 

The Sun Devils wrapped up the third rotation with a 49.075 on beam, their second meet in a row scoring above a 49.000 on beam.

Despite two Panther gymnasts earning career-highs on beam, ASU was able to hold on for the victory. ASU was led in the fourth and final rotation by Boyer who scored a new career-high 9.900 on floor.

Wilson and her teammates were visibly emotional after the meet and, according to Wilson, it all hit her after the meet ended. 

"I think it was kind of crazy to me that I did get so emotional," Wilson said. "It kind of all hit me at once like dang, this is the last time I'm going to be in front of an ASU crowd here in Desert Financial. It's just crazy to think I've spent five years here."

ASU head coach Jay Santos said tonight's win was a storybook ending for his seniors and that he's thrilled that the team's confidence has been building as the season's gone on.

"It's great. Obviously that's how script it," Santos said. "But to go out and have a performance like this at the end of the week after three meets just shows the resilience and how much hard work they've put in all year."

The Sun Devils will travel to Baton Rouge, Louisiana on Friday where they will take on No. 5 LSU at 5:15 p.m. MST.


Reach the reporter at cfahrend@asu.edu and follow @chris_drop_ on Twitter.

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