Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

No. 9 Alabama gymnastics loses to No. 2 LSU

Courtesy of UA Athletics
Courtesy of UA Athletics Alabama gymnast Ella Burgess performs her floor routine against LSU on Mar. 1 in Baton Rouge, LA.

On Friday, the No. 9 Alabama gymnasts took on the No. 2 LSU gymnasts in Baton Rouge. The Crimson Tide was searching for a statement win in another top-10 SEC matchup, but LSU won the meet 198.325-197.325.   

“I felt like our team came in ready to start strong. They got a little bit fazed there in the start on bars, and had a couple mistakes that we had to recover from,” head coach Ashley Johnston said. “I was proud of them for how they responded on beam. That was a clutch moment that they could’ve decided to truly go after it or they could’ve been distracted. And they went after it.” 

At last week’s Power of Pink meet, graduate student Makarri Doggette suffered an injury that has put her out for the rest of the season. With Doggette competing in the uneven bars lineup for every meet this season, as well as the vault lineup for a few meets, the Crimson Tide will need to replace her.  

“I think the team, they’ve experienced a lot of emotion from last week’s meet and really rallying around Makarri having to go through a tough disappointment,” Johnston said. “They have really stuck together and connected. Makarri was here, just leading, being a vocal presence, being all invested with anything that she could do tonight for the team.”  

The meet started with the Crimson Tide on the uneven bars. The Crimson Tide posted a 49.2, and the Tigers posted a 49.45 on the vault. 

For Alabama, graduate student Mati Waligora suffered two falls during her bar routine, and posted an 8.4. The highest scores for the Crimson Tide came from freshman Chloe LaCoursiere and senior Cameron Machado. They both posted a 9.875. The uneven bars title went to LSU’s Haleigh Bryant, who posted a 9.975.  

After the second rotation, the Tigers were in the lead 99.1-98.425. On the uneven bars, LSU scored a 49.65, and Alabama scored a 49.225 on the vault. 

For the Crimson Tide, graduate student Luisa Blanco posted the highest score on the vault, a 9.9. The vault title went to Bryant, though, who posted a 9.95.  

Junior Corinne Bunagan, a candidate to replace Doggette in the event, had her competition debut, on the vault, for this season. Bunagan has completed exhibition vaults at the last two meets against Georgia and at Texas Woman’s, and in her first competitive vault, she posted a 9.775.  

“Corinne’s been working really hard to get that Yurchenko one-and-a-half on vault. She’s been working hard in the gym,” Johnston said. “We put Corinne in, and I thought she did a good job kind of settling in, not letting the nerves get the best of her, and being able to have a good vault.” 

For the third rotation, LSU was on the balance beam and Alabama was on the floor. LSU posted a total of 49.45 on the beam to bring its total to 148.55. On the floor, Alabama posted a score of 49.4 to bring its total to 147.825.  

For the Crimson Tide, sophomore Gabby Gladieux posted the highest score on the floor, a 9.95. Once again, though, the event title went to Bryant, who scored a perfect 10.   

For the fourth rotation, Alabama posted a 49.5 on the balance beam and LSU posted a 49.775 on the floor. For the Crimson Tide, graduate student Ella Burgess won the event title with a 9.95.  

“I thought that was a really big moment for Ella, coming off of a little mistake on floor that was pretty uncharacteristic for her,” Johnston said, “and really having a strong dominant performance, to have a 10.0 and a 9.9 split on beam. She was so close to that perfect mark, but it was still an amazing moment to celebrate.” 

The all-around title went to Bryant, who posted a 39.85. Gladieux and Blanco also competed in the all-around and earned a 39.45 and 39.55, respectively.  

The Crimson Tide will be back in action next Friday for the last home meet of the season in Coleman Coliseum for Eras Night. The gymnasts will compete in a quad meet against Illinois, Minnesota and Talladega College. The meet is set to start at 7 p.m. 

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