Alabama gymnastics is undefeated. They’ll need to step it up to win the conference

With only the cream of the crop left to face this season, Alabama needs to level up and be consistent to preserve a perfect record.


Courtesy of Alabama Athletics.

If the Alabama gymnastics strategy is to take this season one week at a time, it’s working. The team managed its fourth win in four weeks on Friday night, maintaining an undefeated record. The win on the road against Kentucky was, head coach Dana Duckworth said, yet another chance for Alabama to put its best foot forward.

“Overall, tonight was a very intense team effort,” head coach Dana Duckworth said. “We talk about it all the time, the love of the journey is what is going to make our team strong at the end.”

The brightest spot of the meet for Alabama came in its first rotation, the uneven bars, as the team scored a season-high on the event, 49.425. Sophomore anchor Makarri Doggette’s score of 9.950 was top of the heap for the Crimson Tide, which counted scores no lower than a 9.850 on the rotation. Doggette’s score matches her career best, which came in 2020.

“We created momentum on the uneven bars and I was very proud of that performance,” Duckworth said.

The rest of the meet proved to be low-energy for the Crimson Tide. None of the following three rotations accumulated a score of 49.30 or better, and the team saw a season-low score of 48.925 on the vault. The vault did, however, feature a bounce-back performance from junior Kaylee Quinn, who fell on the apparatus last week.

“I can’t speak enough about Kaylee Quinn going out there and hitting that vault after missing it in the last meet,” Duckworth said.

Alabama looks to have found staples at the lead-off and anchor position on the balance beam with senior Alonza Klopfer and sophomore Luisa Blanco. Klopfer scored her second straight score of 9.90 on the event and Blanco scored a 9.875 for the second time this season.

But the trouble comes when looking for consistency in the lineup’s mid-range slots. Against Auburn last week, Alabama scored a season-high of 49.425 on the beam, but this week the team struggled to stomach a score of 9.425 from Doggette and had to include a 9.70 from freshman Shania Adams.

“I was proud of Luisa Blanco for once again wrapping it up and doing her job after a few mistakes ahead of her,” Duckworth said.

With the conclusion of its match against the Kentucky Wildcats, Alabama is officially halfway through its regular season. But fans are still on the lookout for one thing: a score of 197 from the Tide.

The four opponents Alabama will face in the second half of the season are all ranked in the top 10. Alabama will go on the road against No. 10 Georgia, then No. 2 LSU, No. 6 Arkansas and No. 1 Florida. Of the four upcoming opponents for Alabama, Georgia is the only team that has not scored a 197. If Alabama hopes to win the conference, it will have to break 197 and develop consistency as the team faces more formidable foes.

The Alabama-Georgia meet will air live from Athens on SEC Network Friday night at 5 p.m.