ST. CHARLES, Mo. – The second-ranked LSU gymnastics team (6-0, 5-0 SEC) faces its toughest test this season against the country’s best teams at the GymQuarters Mardi Gras Invitational at 6:30 p.m. CT Friday at the St. Charles Arena.
The meet, which features No. 1 Oklahoma, No. 10 Georgia and No. 15 Missouri marks the first part of the weekend’s full schedule. The Tigers will then return to Baton Rouge to take on No. 20 George Washington and No. 22 Iowa at 2:30 p.m. CT Sunday inside the Maravich Center.
Friday’s meet will be streamed live on FloGymnastics.com. Fans must subscribe to the site to gain access to the video. There will also be a live stats for all four teams at LSUsports.net/livestats.
The four-team met will be just like a home meet for the Tigers. The squad will begin on vault, followed by bars and beam, and then close the night on floor. The Sooners will use the rotation of floor, vault, bars and beam.
D-D Breaux Previews the Meet
“We are excited about Oklahoma, Georgia and Missouri all on the floor at the same time,” head coach D-D Breaux said. “Our training cycle has stayed the same and we want to be rested for the meet so we haven’t put any more emphasis on it. We want the kids to be really sharp for tomorrow. Everyone’s spirits are really high, and we are all anxious to go out there and compete against the best teams in the country.”
Last Time Out
The Tigers took down No. 23 Arkansas, 197.700-196.275, Friday night in Fayetteville. The win over the Razorbacks pushed the Tigers to 6-0 and 5-0 in conference. Freshman Kennedi Edney captured her third-straight all-around title with a 39.500.
Edney split the vault title with senior Ashleigh Gnat after scores of 9.90. Sophomore Lexie Priessman won her fourth career bars title with a 9.90 in the anchor spot. The Tigers caught fire on floor and beam with scores of 49.550 and 49.525 respectively.
Gnat won the floor title with a 9.95 to push her career individual title number to 48. Senior Myia Hambrick closed out the evening with a 9.95 in the second spot on beam for a new career high and her first beam title of the season.
Squad Ties Record for Consecutive Meets with 197
LSU has hit a team score of 197 or 14-straight meets dating back to the 2016 season. The Tigers earned a score of 197.700 on Friday night against the Razorbacks to tie the school record, which was originally set between the 2014 and 2015 seasons. LSU opened with a 197.825 against No. 9 Georgia. The Tigers followed that with a 197.525 at No. 4 Alabama. LSU then hit a 197.475 at home against TWU and on the road at No. 6 Kentucky. LSU totaled a 197.425 at home against No. 11 Missouri and then against on the road at No. 23 Arkansas with a 197.700
Tigers in the National Rankings
LSU is No. 2 in the Road To Nationals rankings. LSU owns the No. 2 spot on both floor and beam with averages of 49.483 and 49.400 respectively. The Tigers also rank No. 4 on bars and No. 3 on vault.
Individual Rankings: Kennedi Edney: 5th AA, 14th FX, 16th VT, 18th UB, 19th BB; Ashleigh Gnat: 1st VT, 3rd FX, 5th AA, 20th BB; Lexie Priessman: 10th UB, 23rd VT; Sarah Finnegan: 11th AA, 16th UB; Myia Hambrick: 5th BB; Ruby Harrold: 22nd UB; McKenna Kelley: 20th FX; Lauren Li: 25th BB
A Look at the Opponents
Oklahoma is the top-ranked team in the country with an average score of 197.813. The Sooners own two scores of 198 or better and have not scored lower than 197.425. In the rankings, OU is No. 1 on bars, beam and floor and No. 2 on vault. Freshman Maggie Nichols owns the top spot individually in the all-around as well as on bars, beam and floor.
Georgia opened the season with its lowest score of the season against LSU. The Bulldogs have responded nicely and own a 4-1 record since. Missouri suffered a loss at the hands of LSU in Baton Rouge two weeks ago. Mizzou owns event rankings in the top-25 on vault, beam and floor.
Fans can follow the Tigers on the team’s social media channels: @LSUgym on Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat, www.Facebook.com/lsugym and at YouTube.com/lsugymnastics.